Festivals in India are a huge affair. People gather around during festivities, pray and seek blessings from the Lord, and take part in numerous traditions. As exciting as all this can be, let us not forget about the gastronomic experiences. My favourite Indian festival is Diwali- the Festival of Lights. Every Diwali, I try to prepare new kinds of snacks. But one dish never goes out of style. Namak Pare is traditional crispy deep-fried snacks prepared during Diwali. It is savoury strips of pastry delicately seasoned with carom seeds (ajwain) and onion seeds (kalaunji), and deep-fried in clarified butter (ghee). The pastry or dough is prepared using all-purpose flour (maida). Whole wheat flour (atta) or semolina (suji) can also be used and combined together to prepare the dough. The dough should be of proper consistency. After cutting the ribbon-shaped nimkis, it would do good to keep them aside resting for a while, as it turns up the crispiness in them. This is followed by deep-frying them on a medium flame. It attains a perfect golden-brown colour on cooking. Namak Pare can be served as an evening snack with a hot cup of tea, and can also be stored for days in an airtight container. You can never get enough of this classic snack.
How to make Namak Pare
|All purpose flour (maida)||3 cups|
|Clarified butter (ghee)||4 table spoons|
|Carom seeds (ajwain)||½ tea spoon|
|Onion seed (kalunji)||½tea spoon|
|Salt (namak)||to taste|
|Vegetable Oil||to fry|
- 1. Mix clarified butter, salt, carom seeds and onion seeds with the all purpose flour.
- 2. Add little by little water & knead into stiff dough.
- 3. Let it rest for 30 minutes.
- 4. Make small lemon sized balls. Roll them out to the 1” thickness chapati.
- 5. Now cut them into 1/2"strips lengthwise & then into 2" length across (you can change the shape as per your choice).
- 6. Once all “nimkis” are cut, leave them aside for 1 hour.(this really gives good crispiness to it)
- 7. Heat oil in a deep pan.
- 8. Add the strips & fry on medium flame until they become golden in colour.
- 9. Store in air-tight containers.