Mom's Ripe Plantain Fritters

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Ripe Plantain Fritters or what we call Pazham Pori is one of the most popular chai kadi or tea time treats of Kerala and like every dish out there, this one too is different in each region. What I am sharing today is my mom's Malabar version and the only way I enjoy this treat.

Mom's Ripe Plantain Fritters

Updated on 1st July 2017 with New images of the fritters with the addition of nigella seeds that I made during Eid holidays. The Nigella seeds flavour gives this snack another dimension tastewise. It can be omitted.

Sucker for plantains, and like mentioned in my Kai Pola post, I can live rest of my life eating plantain that is steamed, fried, sauteed, stuffed, etc. Ripe Plantain Fritters are the easiest snack among all the others that we do with this King of Kerala Fruit! 😜

(This pic was taken back home when she made)

There are so many variations depending on region and personal preference. My mom's way is usually how my aunts also make but there is some magic in what my mom makes which I have never been able to crack. I think it is primarily due to the fact that she does not have a recipe. simple as that...but makes it complicated for me.

Malabar kitchen can churn out a variety of chai kadi (tea time snacks) with just-ripe plantains and these fritters are just one of them. It is one fried snack that I eat without thinking too much. Having had it so many times, I thought I can replicate it in my Yanbu kitchen without much trouble. I was wrong. The first time I made this in Yanbu in 2014 was a disaster. I followed some recipe online which asked for sugar and baking soda etc. I never wanted to waste the plantains that I get so rarely here so I waited until I got back home. Plantains are like an exotic fruit here, hardly available and that too not of a good quality. 

Mom's Ripe Plantain Fritters

When I went back to India, I made it a point to watch my mom make pazham pori...and that is the only way I can get close to her way. What I was doing not correct (there is no wrong way) was adding sugar and baking powder.  You don't need either to make this my mom's way. If you add sugar, the fritters turn darker while deep frying even before the plantain starts to get cooked. The ripe plantain will lend sweetness and gets caramelised while frying so there is no need for sugar in the batter. Secondly, the baking powder or soda too not required as then the batter will separate from the plantain and it will be like a balloon. So let me share our home recipe sans sugar and baking soda/powder! 

Mom's Ripe Plantain Fritters 

INGREDIENTS

For the batter: 
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 to 2 teaspoon rice flour
1 teaspoon nigella seeds (optional, but recommended)
a pinch of cardamom powder
a pinch of turmeric powder (optional)
3/4 to 1 cup water (more or less depending on the flour quality to make thick batter)
Salt as per taste

2 to 3 just-ripe but not too ripe medium-sized plantains
Oil to fry

METHOD: 

  1. Mix all the ingredients of the batter to make a smooth lump-less thick batter. The batter should remain in your finger when dipped. Thick batter and thin enough for easily coating the sliced plantains. 
  2. Trim both ends of the plantains, cut in half, peel skin and start slicing each half lengthwise (not too thin)
  3. Heat the oil in a Kadai 
  4. Test the readiness of the oil by dropping a small drop of batter - if it sizzles and comes on top then it is ready to fry
  5. Pick one slice and dip into the batter ensuring it is evenly coated
  6. Deep fry both sides till done on a medium flame
  7. Serve hot with a hot cup of tea! 
Notes: 
  • You can use wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour or make it 1:1 
  • Avoid overripe bananas, they tend to suck all the oil and get too mushy
Mom's Ripe Plantain Fritters

F is one weird Malabar man who hates Ripe Plantains in any form except for Fritters. So I get to have most of it and over the weekend, I make a big batch of these Ripe Plantain Fritters and we devour it with a hot cup of strong tea.

Just in case you have some more batter left and no more plantains to fry, then use it to make dates fritters. Just pit the dates (remove the seed) and dip in the batter and deep fry while the oil is hot.

Did you notice that I have served two plates of Ripe Plantain Fritters which is so not me? I always serve on one plate and we both share it, but the 30 days of Ramadan taught me that I need a fair share! LOL. So it gets divided equally!

Now, let me know how you make this simple ripe plantain fritters?

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