For the last day of “deep fried food made healthy by baking” theme, I chose to do spicy peanuts. I contemplated between peanuts & potato fries. Potato fries have been on my to-do list for quite some time but I have seen way too many baked potato fries making rounds in the blogosphere and was a little reluctant to blog that recipe for the marathon. Hence I chose to give spicy peanuts a try. Also, I usually avoid making deep fried food at home, mostly because of the cooking odor after the preparation. I live in an apartment and it does get stuffy inside and it is even worse in winters and on rainy days, when I cannot even open the windows for some fresh air. Those are the days when I really miss pakodas and deep fried food. So I thought this is the right time to experiment with healthier versions of deep fried food and here I am with these spicy peanuts!
Preparation Time: 10- 15 minutes
Baking Time: 12 minutes
- 1/2 cup unroasted Peanuts ~ Groundnuts
- 1/4 cup Gram Flour ~ Besan
- 1 tbsp. Rice Flour
- 1/2 tsp. Salt (adjust to taste)
- 1/2 tsp. Chili Powder (adjust to taste)
- 1/8 tsp. Baking Soda
- 1/8 tsp. Cumin Powder
- 1/8 – 1/4 Garam Masala (I forgot how much I added. I think I used ¼ tsp.)
- 1/8 tsp. Amchur Powder
- Little Turmeric
- 1 tbsp. Oil
- 2 tbsp. Water
- Preheat the oven 400F.
- Line a cookie or baking sheet with aluminum foil and keep it aside.
- Mix all the dry ingredients together. Taste the flour for seasoning and adjust spice & salt, if required.
- Add oil and mix well. Taste the batter for seasoning again, in case you did not do it in the earlier step and adjust the seasoning according to taste.
- Slowly add water and make a batter. Batter show be thick and should coat the peanuts.
- Sprinkle the peanuts or drop the peanuts on to the baking sheet with your fingers. I used my hands to mix the batter and at times, hands work the best.
- Bake on the middle rack for 8 minutes in a preheated oven.
- Remove from the over, shake the tray or turn the peanuts around for even baking. Also, break lumps of peanuts if there are too many peanuts clustered together.
- Put the tray bake in the oven and bake for another 5 minutes or until peanuts are crispy. Do remember that peanuts will continue to roast even after removing from the oven. Also, baked peanuts won’t look golden brown like the deep fried ones.
- Let them a cool and serve or store in an airtight container for later use.
- I made a small batch and I felt it was a waste to heat a big oven to bake just ½ cup of peanuts. Baking in the oven is a good idea if making spiced peanuts in bulk. I think for just ½ cup of peanuts, microwave would be a great option. I have not tried baking these in the microwave but do check this recipe for microwave version.
- I usually do not use amchur very often in my cooking but always have some in the pantry. Today I was in a mood to add it to the peanuts. I do not know if it was the amchur powder or the baking soda, something was a little too much in the peanuts. It was still edible and did not bother me that much.
- Throw in any spices you like to this recipe and you can not go wrong. Substitution of garam masala with chaat masala is a one variation. If using chaat masala, I would skip amchur powder or use only chili powder & salt and skip garam masala & amrchur powder altogether. Another good spice to consider is creole seasoning.
Event Entries: I am sending these falafel to Simona’s My Legume Love Affair, an event started by Susan, to Nalani’s Show Me My Hits: Lentils & Legumes, an event started by Sangeetha and to Pradnya’s Bake Fest, an event started by Vardhini.