Shrimp pakoda is succulent and crispy Indian style fried shrimp. Juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside, it is an addictive snack and an appetizer for any occasion.
Pakoda is an Indian fritter and the batter is usually with gram flour. Onion pakoda, mirchi bajji some of the most common fritters and other varieties include with chicken, spinach, paneer and prawns.
To prepare shrimp pakoda, season shrimp/prawns with Indian spices and herbs, coat it with a thin batter prepared with gram flour and rice flour, and deep fry for a few minutes. The light coating of batter gives prawn pakoda a crispy outer coating.
- Shrimp - use peeled and deveined shrimp. Both fresh and frozen shrimp work well in this recipe and thaw frozen shrimp completely, before using.
- Flours - use equal parts of gram flour and rice flour. Rice flour gives shrimp a crispy texture.
- Seasoning - chili powder, pepper powder, ginger garlic paste, green chilies, turmeric and salt are the key seasoning ingredients.
- Herbs - Cilantro and mint leaves enhance the flavor of the fritters. You can always skip these herbs, if you can not source or do not have it handy. Cilantro is a common herb in Indian Kitchens. Hence, you can always replace mint with cilantro.
- Lime juice for tang and oil for deep frying.
Wash shrimp and squeeze out as much water as you can from it. Or place in a colander or a strainer to drain the water.
Marinate shrimp with spices, herbs, lime juice and keep aside for 15 minutes or for a few hours in the refrigerator.
Just before deep frying, sprinkle chickpeas flour, rice flour on pakoda mixture and toss well to combine. Batter should lightly coat the shrimp. If the mixture is very stiff, add about 1 - 2 tablespoons of water.
Heat oil in a deep pan and fry shrimp on medium high flame until golden brown. Remove from oil and drain on a paper towel. Do not overcrowd the pan and deep fry in 2 - 3 batches, depending on the size of the frying pan.
Store leftover shrimp pakoda in the refrigerator for upto 2-3 days. Reheat leftovers for 30-60 seconds in the microwave, before serving. Mind you, prawns will not retain it's crunch. Alternatively, to retain the crispiness, you can reheat in the oven, toaster oven or air fryer.
- Frozen Shrimp - For crispy pakora, thaw shrimp completely. Unthawed shrimp will release water, which will loosen the batter, resulting in soft fried shrimp.
- Excess Water - After washing the shrimp, squeeze out as much water as you can. If shrimp are watery, batter can become thin and might not coat well to shrimp.
- Deep Frying - For crispy, even and proper cooking of the shrimp, do not overcrowd the pan or wok with shrimp. Try to keep the oil temperature hot at all times.
- Temperature - For crispy and juicy shrimp, and for even cooking, deep fry on medium high flame.
Yes you can. However, make sure to thaw the shrimp completely before using it. Unthawed shrimp will release water and dilute the pakora mixture, resulting in soft fried shrimp.
Take frozen shrimp in a bowl and run it under hot water. Leave it in water for few minutes. To thaw peeled shrimp, leave it in hot water for at least 15-30 minutes to completely thaw. If possible, change the water once in between.
This recipe was part of the month long blogging marathon, I did in 2016 with the theme 26 protein rich recipes. This post is republished with new content and images.
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- 2 bowls
- 1 Knife & Cutting Board
- 1 Pan or Wok for deep frying
- 1 Slotted Spoon
- A Plate & Paper Towels to drain fried shrimp
- 1 pound peeled Shrimp 31-40 count
- ¾ teaspoon Salt adjust to taste
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric
- 1 ½ teaspoon Chili Powder adjust to heat tolerance level
- ½ teaspoon Black Pepper
- 2 teaspoon Ginger Garlic Paste
- 4 small Green Chilies finely chopped (or minced), about 2 teaspoons
- 2 tablespoons chopped Cilantro if you like cilantro, you can add a bit more
- 2 tablespoons chopped Mint
- 1 - 1 ½ tablespoon Lime Juice or ½ small lime, juiced
- 3 tablespoons Gram Flour ~ Besan Flour ~ Chickpeas Flour
- 3 tablespoons Rice Flour
- Oil for deep frying
- Peel and devein shrimp. When using frozen peeled shrimp, place the shrimp in lukewarm water for about ½ hour to completely thaw the shrimp.
- Wash and squeeze out as much water as you can from the shrimp. Or place in a colander or a strainer to drain the water.
- Sprinkle, salt, turmeric, chili powder, black pepper powder, ginger garlic paste, green chilies, cilantro, mint, lime juice and toss well. Keep aside for 15 minutes or for a few hours in the refrigerator.
- When ready to deep fry, sprinkle chickpeas flour, rice flour and toss well to combine. If required add some water, about 1 - 2 tablespoons. If there is some moisture in the shrimp, you may not need any water. Batter should lightly coat the shrimp.
- Heat oil for deep frying, it should be around 375 F. I do not measure the temperature.
- Drop shrimp into hot oil. Don’t overcrowd the pan. If the pan is crowded or if oil is not hot enough, the batter coating could fall off the shrimp. Depending on the size of the pan, fry the shrimp in 2 - 3 batches.
- Deep fry shrimp on medium high flame until golden and crisp, about 2 - 3 minutes per side.
- Remove from oil, drain a paper towel. Fry remaining shrimp.
- Serve with green chutney or as is.
- Remove excess water - After cleaning & washing the shrimp, squeeze out as much water as you can. If shrimp are watery, batter can become thin and might not coat well to shrimp.
- Frozen shrimp - When using frozen shrimp, make sure the shrimp is completely thawed. Otherwise, moisture in the shrimp will loosen the batter and will not coat well to shrimp, resulting in soft fried shrimp.
- Deep frying - Do not overcrowd the pan or wok when deep frying. Try to keep the oil hot at all times and maintain the temperature during deep frying.
- Deep fry on medium flame to ensure prawns are evenly cooked, crisp & crunchy outside and juicy inside.
- Nutrition - values mentioned below are approximate.