Urad Dal Kachori
Updated: Nov 25, 2021
Crisp, flaky flour shells (kachoris) filled with a spiced, mildly sweet urad dal mix - Northern India’s second favourite snack / street food, after samosas of course!
A quick potato curry recipe to go with, turns these urad dal kachoris in to a complete breakfast, within minutes.
You know your homemade urad dal kachori has turned out well when the shell or the covering is flaky and has a few layers, not like puff pastry though. The trick to getting this right is in the frying of the urad dal kachori. Add the kachoris to medium hot oil and fry them on medium low heat.
This will allow your urad dal kachoris enough time to cook through right to the centre, making them crisp and flaky. If your urad dal kachoris are even slightly undercooked from the middle, they will turn out soft.
Don't worry, the urad dal kachoris will not soak in any extra oil because of the low heat frying.
Urad dal kachoris are the perfect tea time snack. As are all of these breakfast / chai time recipes that I do recommend you try.
You could even serve urad dal kachori as finger food / party snacks. Simply make smaller, bite size, mini kachoris and you're all set.
Urad Dal Kachori freezes well, uncooked. Once done with the rolling and filling stage, place the urad dal kachoris on a plate and freeze. After a few hours, pack them in zip lock bags and store in your freezer for a couple of months at least. When the craving strikes, get the frozen kachoris out and fry!
Another finger food recipe that freezes well is this one of homemade, preservative-free Corn Cheese Balls. Yes, why buy store bought nuggets when you could just as easily and effortlessly make them at home.
Connect with me on social media for (errrmmmm) not-so-regular updates! Yes, I’m not going to be on your screen all day every day!
This recipe makes approx. 15 urad dal kachoris
Prep: 25 – 30 minutes
Cooking: 35 – 40 minutes
Ingredients to make Urad Dal Kachori
For the dough
1 ½ cups whole wheat flour (atta)
½ cup all-purpose flour (maida)
½ tsp salt
½ cup ghee
Water – enough to knead a hard dough
For the dal filling
1 cup urad dal, soaked for 2 - 3 hours
2 tbsp cooking oil
½ tsp hing (asafoetida)
½ tsp haldi (turmeric powder)
1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
1 tsp red chilli powder
½ tsp jeera powder (cumin seeds powder)
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp amchur (dry mango powder)
1 tsp saunth (dry ginger powder)
2 tsp saunf (fennel seeds), crushed
1 tsp sugar
Salt to taste
Cooking oil for frying
Method of making Urad Dal Kachori
Mix salt and flour. Add ghee to the flour mix and combine well. At this point, the consistency of the flour mix should be similar to bread crumbs – add more ghee in case required. Add enough water to form a hard dough.
Cover with a wet muslin / kitchen cloth and keep aside for an hour.
I prefer using ghee for my kachori covering dough, for a flakier crisper texture. You could use your regular cooking oil too to make these urad dal kachoris vegan.
Urad Dal filling
Drain the soaked urad dal and grind to a coarse paste.
Add cooking oil to a pan on medium low heat and add all the spice powders. Add the ground urad dal to this spice mix and continue to cook on low heat for a few minutes, till the dal is cooked (should take about 5 – 6 minutes).
Ideally, you will not need to add water for cooking as the dal has been soaked for a few hours. If required, add water by the tablespoon in order to avoid a runny urad dal mix. If you do happen to add more water than is required, cook it down till the mix reaches a dry-ish, almost grainy, powdery consistency again.
Taste and adjust seasoning to your preference. The urad dal mix should be spicy, tangy, with a hint of sweetness and a somewhat pronounced flavour of hing / asafoetida. If you don't like the flavour of hing, reduce the quantity.
Remember to keep the urad dal mix mildly spicier than required. Once it is stuffed in the dough shell and fried, the overall flavours of your urad dal kachori will mellow down.
Urad Dal Kachori - bringing it together
Heat enough cooking oil in a frying pan or kadhai to fry the kachoris.
Portion the dough in to lemon size balls and roll to form thick rotis – thinner at the edges.
Place a generous amount of urad dal mixture in the centre and bring the edges together. Seal and flatten the kachori by hand or lightly roll the stuffed dough ball, only enough to flatten it ever so slightly.
Sealing the kachori nicely is important here because the dough will puff up when frying. If your kachori is not sealed properly, the urad dal mix may splutter out of the shells in to the oil.
Fry the urad dal kachoris patiently on medium low heat. Why medium low heat? Read the notes section for a detailed explanation.
Serve urad dal kachori HOT with coriander or mint chutney and tamarind chutney. Goes well with a Northern India style simple potato curry as well. Urad dal kachori is also used to make the popular Northern Indian street food - Raj Kachori or Kachori Chaat
Note: If your roti (covering / shell) is too thick, the kachori will be undercooked and if the dough is too thin, the texture may not be as flaky.
The temperature of the oil is very important in this recipe – medium low heat will cook the urad dal kachori through and give the outer covering a flaky texture.
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