Matar kachori

Matar kachori (peas stuffed fried dumplings) is a much loved Indian snack that can make almost anyone’s mouth salivate. Small balls of dough are stuffed with pickled spicy fresh peas and fried till they reach crispy flaky perfection. Served with some coriander mint chutney and date tamarind sweet chutney, this matar kachori is a must make for special occasions.

matar kachori

Things that forever have my silly stupid little heart:

1. Snow cones during summers
2. Bedtime stories of my nani (grandma)
3. Antakshari (singing out loud) with my family on our rooftop in summer evenings
4. Puchkas or Gol gappa
5. Dance dance and dance some more!
6. My lil niece Sia 😘
7. Kachori – matar, daal + kachi aam, sattu + onion in that order.
matar kachori


Usually I give in and make matar kachori every year around this time for Holi. It’s a tradition. It’s a ritual. It’s something I plan my whole year around coz heck there isn’t anything better than a super crispy, perfectly flaky piece of deep fried dumpling / kachori stuffed with all kinds of spicy tangy achaari peas goodness.

I spent all of yesterday doing what I love best. Not cooking for a change. Rather reading. I had forgotten what a powerful thing writing is. In the quest to churn out posts for you guys in time for Holi, I had put aside my voice and started rambling on, concentrating more on the recipe than the story that usually I love to share. But after spending a good couple of hours reading my favorites like David Lebowitz, Orangette and The year in food I remembered what had made me start a blog in the first place.

matar kachori

Right off the start I knew it wouldn’t be a place for me to just share cut and dry recipes. Heck, if that’s what you are after (and no judgement here), you might find another website giving you loads of recipes. But me? This space here will always be filled with a chatty me. This space here will always be filled with food that is unabashedly fun, fast and fabulous, with stories that are intensely personal and photography  that is forever moody. That doesn’t mean the recipes are not important. Of course they are. I make them many times over before sharing them here which is why you wont see me posting everyday coz its impossible to eat that much! But when I do share a recipe with you guys, its a piece of my soul. Something that I have made my own by tweaking it to suit my modern sensibilities or other classics from my mother and granny’s recipe books.

matar kachori

This matar kachori for instance. There isn’t a snack in the world i would trade these for, except may be these scrumptious Keema samosa. (Sorry but I am a samosa girl for life). These matar kachori are actually my husband’s family recipe, something that his naani used to make for him. As a child he spent a considerable amount of time living with his granny till the age of 11 and till date his love for those delicacies know no bounds. So come Holi, this and Malpua with Rabri are something I absolutely have to make. The dahi bhalla/ vada is optional. As is the mutton curry. But this matar kachori and those malpuas, nope. Not a chance.

Matar kachori

So yes, I know we are all busy trying to get healthier and do the “clean eating” thing. While we are at it, can I just point it out how much that term annoys me! What is clean eating? And where does it say only fruits and vegan things are clean? May be I am old and too set in my ways but for me food will always be more than just a calorie number, so much more than a fad of the season you need to blindly follow, and definitely much more wholesome, hearty and soul-fixing than a bowl of styled to hell smoothie will ever be. So yes, be healthy. Of course take care of what you put in your body but not coz its fashionable or coz you need to lose weight. Do it coz food is so much more than mere sustenance for the body.

In fact foods like this matar kachori are sustenance for the soul. They are the invisible but edible love that every person craves for. They are those indelible memories that make a person. And when it comes to celebrating, how can a special dish like this matar kachori not be a part of the feast? So this Holi, along with whatever you make, give these a try. They are exactly what your party needs to be perfect.

matar kachori

The dough is simple enough with an usual cast ; flour, salt, ghee, chilled water ( a must). Given that fresh peas are soon going to be a thing of past, this is the perfect time to go ahead and make these. We love our filling to be spicy and tangy. So the pre-boiled peas are then cooked with some onions, achaari spices and organic chickpea flour and ground coarsely. This masala is then stuffed into rolled out discs of th dough and deep fried. It seems simple. Easy right? It is but it can be a little tricky too! So please pay attention to the instructions if you wish to achieve a perfectly flaky (karara) matar kachori. I used my diminutive charms and considerable nagging prowess to get these gems on making the perfect dough from my neighborhood mithai wala. Trust me , those tips are pro!

matar kachori

So go ahead make these delicious matar kachori this Holi or just about any time you are in the mood for some good old desi snack. While you are at it and indulging in fried stuff, make some keema samosa and savour them too! After all Holi comes just once a year and if you dont indulge now, you know you wont for the next three months what with the impending Indian summer. But if you are set on a baked savory, these caprese empanadas (cheese + tomato+ basil stuffed gujiya) are sheer perfection!! 

Many a brain storming sessions and discussions, that experience called “adda” would be incomplete without this ubiquitous and humble Indian snack of matar kachori and adrak wali chai.

Invite friends over, get those karahis ready and go make these matar kachoris like there is no tomorrow. I know many sad and deplorable things are going on in the world, food seems trivial at times. But sharing food with someone is much larger than just food. Its about forging friendships that break barriers, its about giving someone comfort, its creating a loving powerful memory for your little one, and I can vouch about the impact of these small memories. They almost always lead to beautiful soulful things like books and poems you cant put down and other times help create smaller but equally honest things like this space here -a little girl still remembering her childhood and recreating it one dish at a time, for you, her new friends. 

Wishing everyone a life of love and joy, 

Xo,

S.

matar kachori

Print Recipe
Matar kachori
Matar kachori (peas stuffed fried dumplings) is a much loved Indian snack that can make almost anyone's mouth salivate. Small balls of dough are stuffed with pickled spicy fresh peas and fried till they reach crispy flaky perfection.
matar kachori
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Servings
Ingredients
For the dough
For the peas (matar) filling:
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Servings
Ingredients
For the dough
For the peas (matar) filling:
matar kachori
Instructions
For the dough:
  1. Start by mixing the flour, baking powder, salt and carom seeds in a large mixing bowl. Add the ghee to it and rub the flour till it resembles coarse sand crumbs. slowly add the chilled water (not all at once) and working quickly knead the dough till soft. Add more water if needed one tablespoon at a time. The dough once done should have come together smoothly and will be soft and pliable to the touch. If poked with a finger it will leave a dent and then spring back. Cover and set aside for 20-30 mins. In this time, make the filling.
  2. Start by boiling the shelled peas in water with salt and 1 spoon sugar for 5 mins. Remove after ten mins and lightly smash with a potato masher. Keep aside.
  3. Now heat a little ghee in a non stick pan and add the cumin, fennel seeds and the hing. Once fragrant, add the ginger, green chillies, onion slices, all the masala and cook for 5mins. Now add the smashed peas , 1 tablespoon sugar, crushed kasuri methi and cook for further 3-4 mins. The stuffing turns brownish. Remove and let it cool.
To make kachori
  1. Now, roll out a small disc of flour to about 3 inch. Place a small sphere of the peas stuffing in the center and bring it to a close by pinching the edges together.
  2. Lightly flatten the sealed edges of the kachori and make sure there are no cracks or visible tears. Press the kachori with your palm gently making sure there are no cracks. Dont flatten them too much. Repeat till all kachoris are ready. Keep them covered with a towel while making new ones to prevent the dough drying out. Now cover with a clingfilm and chill in the refrigerator for 30 mins.
  3. Heat 3 inch oil in a deep heavy Dutch oven or Karahi. When the oil is hot (180C), drop a kachori and reduce the heat to medium low. Fry on medium low heat on both sides till golden brown. You can fry 3-4 at a time depending on the size of your karahi.
  4. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on tissues to drain excess oil. Serve immediately with hari and imli chutney, onion slices in lemon juice and fresh coriander leaves. Enjoy!
Recipe Notes
  • I use chilled water here as opposed to the warm water you will usually find in recipes coz I like my kachori to be really flaky. Since I pretty much make pro level pies, I wanted to use the same technique while making kachori too. 
  • In fact, the chilled water and the chilling of the dough before frying makes the kachoris extremely flaky and light. 
  • At times, I measure out the ghee and chill it too just like I used chilled butter for pies.Works perfectly. 
  • The filling is extremely versatile and can be adjusted as per your own requirements. 
Share this Recipe

6 thoughts

  1. Hi,
    I dont mean to offend your recipe in any way…in fact, i loved it soo much…but somehow, i feel you miss mentioning salt in the stuffing section…sorry for pointing out like this

    1. Oops! Not offended at all. In fact thank you for letting me know 😊 I think it’s such an obvious thing to add, it must have slipped my mind. But yep, definitely add salt to the stuffing 😊

  2. Several of your baked foods recipes look very much like those from the book the Cardamom Trail.

    1. Really? I havent even heard of the book. I am pretty sure most of the blogs would have similar recipes since my bakes are pretty common and regular ones. Thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge