Kale tales & tempura

The flip side of festive days such as thanksgiving is this terrible sense of withdrawal symptoms that invariably strikes after the festivities are over.. Once the cleaning is done, the nice plates are put away and the last wine cork is located in the far corners of the kitchen counter & tossed out, a feeling of 'now what do I do?' sets in and no dish that the head conjures is ever good enough to beat. and no recipe that has been tried, tested & waiting to be posted seems to fit the bill (Take home message: Its not worth making & banking good recipes way  too ahead of time)
When that happens I regress back to comfort foods that I know I'll regret stuffing my face with.. This time around it was deep fried 'Bhajia',  and a large mug of Masala Chai... at 10.00 am in the morning (doing this ought to rank with hitting the booze at 9.00 am, in terms of socio-culinary blasphemy), but it was delicious while it lasted. Weight watchers just got relegated to the back burner!

I had this gorgeous delicata squash left over from the previous dish that I had incorporated it into, and just could not bring my self to see it languish on the kitchen counter.

Coupled with half a bunch of Kale left over from thanksgiving, came up this sinful indulgence. I opted to use chipotle chile powder to incorporate a smoky flavor that complements the sweetness of the Delicata. Feel free to have fun with your own choice of spice blends such as Garam Masala or pav bhaji masala.
The coating of Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs, that are made by drying out only the centres of the bread) also adds a crunchy texture to the otherwise smooth batter covered squash (experimented with both versions with & without bread crumbs, , the one with the Panko won hands down!)

You need:

1/2 a delicata squash (seeds & stringy membrane removed),

2 cups shredded Kale

For the Batter:

2/3 cup Chickpea Flour (Besan)
1/3 cup rice flour
1 tsp Baking powder
1/2 - 1 tsp Chipotle chile powder (adjust as per your taste)
Salt to taste
~ 1 cup Seltzer water.
2 cups Panko bread crumbs
2 cup Canola Oil for deep frying.

Slice the Delicata squash using the thin setting of a mandolin (~ 2 mm thickness)
Remove the thick central vein of the Kale leaves & cut into a fine shred.

Heat the oil in a cast iron pan. Pour the breadcrumbs onto a large plate.
In a mixing bowl, combine the chickpea & rice flour, the spices, salt and baking powder & mix well to evenly disperse the ingredients. Add just enough Seltzer to make a thick batter that coats well to the surface of the squash.

When the oil gets sufficiently hot, dip 2-3 rings of squash into the batter evenly coating the surface.

Transfer the battered rings to the plate containing the bread crumbs and coat evenly on both sides. Drop gently into the hot oil & fry till both sides are golden brown. Remove onto a plate lined with kitchen paper towls to absorb the extra oil. Repeat until the squash is used up.

Add the shredded kale into the batter.

Mix to ensure that all the remaining batter coats onto the kale leaves. Drop spoonfuls of the battered kale into hot oil & fry till the Kale gets crunchy. Remove onto kitchen towels.

 Serve with your choice of condiments.
Bon appetit!



  1. very different n yummy fritters..looks n sounds gr8

  2. Tell me that....happens always when you wrap the last doll after navrathri, throw away the oil sogged absorbant tissue from the bottom of your bakshanam container...
    And yes, I to will unwind with hot masala chai...and those bhajias. Have never tasted Kale...but your bhajias with them seem to tempt me.
    And how come I have not read this post(dated 19th november) till date...I drop by Panfusine atleast twice a day!

  3. That looks too good and love it to the core.yumm :)

  4. Unusual & interesting!!!
    Prathima Rao
    Prats Corner

  5. I tried oven-baked kale crisps yesterday, and wasnt too impressed. I'm probably going to try kale bhajias, and if that doesnt work for my tastebuds, I may have to accept that I just. dont. like. kale...

    And what is the green dip with the squash?

  6. THe green dip was a mint cilantro pesto experiment that didn't quite look as colorful a day after I made it, (despite the lime juice added to hopefully retain the vivid color).. :-(

  7. Delicious and healthy tempuras on the platter, as you mentioned a cup of hot chai will make it divine. Loved the presentation. Not sure how i missed your beautiful space this long. Happy to follow you.

  8. Hi u have a nice blog.you can visit my blog and give ur valuable comments.
    indu srinivasan


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