Pithau Bhaja is a shallow fried veggies coated with rice […]
Pithau Bhaja is a shallow fried veggies coated with rice batter crispy outside but yet crunchy inside with out deep frying. It would be one of the ideal side dish pairing with steamed rice and some garden fresh salads as well. You can pack these to relish a small picnic with friends or can be enjoyed as starter.
What is Pithau?
Going deep to the odia cuisine is a treasure of peerless authentic dishes. Today where modernisation culinary contrast on ketogenic food, veganism..etc .Our cuisine is gift wrap of more diet food. Pithau is a typical or identity of Odia food. Its a traditional or our local fried wafer which is less oily and healthy too. While preparing food i observed when restaurants are busy exploring new fusion food, Pithau Bhaja could be stand as an interesting option which can be fused with regional and international cuisines.
In traditional it was used sil batta a flat stone grinder to grind the rice and spices. But lack of time and modernisation replaced by high powered blender. Whatever and wherever the taste never be changed still keep the crunchiness and spiciness along with odia flavour.
Pithau is a a rice batter along with some homely available spices. Vegetables are half cooked and dip in batter. These fritters are not only light in batter consumed, but also healthy less oily snacks. In Pithau Bhaja most of the vegetables are half cooked .
Some vegetables are not able to half cooked and can be used less amount of gram flour or corn flour to bind the mixture. Pithau can be prepare of many veggies..
mixed vegetables (pumpkins, potatoes, Raw bananas)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
2 handfuls raw rice/arua chaula
3 to 4 cloves
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
small ginger piece
2 to 3 green chilies
5 to 6 garlic cloves -optional
1/2 tsp sugar
Rinse and soak rice in enough water for at least half an hour. Drain the rice water.
In a blender add all the ingredients for Pithau along with rice. Now add some water and blend to form a fine smooth rice paste. Keep it in a bowl.
Add turmeric, chili powder and garam masala into the rice paste. Add little more water to form a slight thick batter. Batter should be slight thick but not runny.
Rinse and wash thoroughly all the vegetables..
There is no need to remove skin of pumpkins for Bhaja. Slice into thick pieces shown in the picture.
In a pot add 1/2 cup of water along with salt . Pour the pumpkin pieces and boil on high flame for 4 to 5 minutes. Keep remember pumpkin should be semi cooked. Now off gas and remove the pumpkin pieces into plate and allow it to cool.
Remove the skin of banana and cut into thick slices as shown in the picture.
Add salt, turmeric()/1/2 tsp) into half cup of water. Add banana into water and boil for 5 to 6 minutes .It should be half cooked .Take out banana pieces on plate and off flame.
Boil potatoes which should not be over cooked. Cool it and peel out the skins. Slice the potatoes into thick circular pieces.
Heat and sprinkle(3 tsp) oil on tawa/skillet. Now dip vegetables in the Pithau one by one. Coat and shake slices to avoid extra batter. place on hot tawa in bathes. Sprinkle little oil over the vegetables over high flame.
Flip the vegetables and fry on medium flame. Frequently turn over the coated veggies until crunchy and golden brown both the sides around 10 minutes. Do repeat the same for rest of slices.