Indian tapas restaurants are one of the hottest foodie trends to take the world by storm. Here’s how to make your own at home.
The beauty of tapas – a Spanish cuisine consisting of many small starter-size portions – is that you get to savour so many delicious flavours. Somebody brilliant applied the idea to Indian food and it took off like wildfire, with specialty Indian tapas restaurants popping up around the world. We’ve put together some easy recipes, perfect for throwing an Indian tapas-style dinner party. Grab your RCS Card and head to your nearest Pick n Pay, Shoprite, Spar or Checkers for ingredients, then get ready to knock your guests’ socks off – and as a bonus, you’ll get up to 55 days interest free on every RCS Card purchase!
Makes around 20
Sunflower oil, for deep frying
250ml self-raising flour
250ml chickpea flour
10ml baking powder
5ml chilli powder
1 onion, chopped finely
5 leaves of spinach, chopped
Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add the onions and spinach and mix together well. Make a well in the centre of the mixture, add the egg and mix. Add around 200 to 250ml water to form a dough. Mix the dough until the texture has an ‘easy-drop’ consistency.
Fill a pot halfway with oil and heat so it’s medium-hot (not boiling). Use a dessert spoon dipped in oil to scoop up enough dough to make one dhaltjie (a golf-ball size). Drop the dhaltjie into the oil and fry until cooked in the centre (use a skewer stick to poke the centre of the dhaltjie to check if it’s cooked). Drain the dhaltjie on paper towel. You can cook around four or five dhaltjies at once, depending on the size of your pot.
BUTTER CHICKEN TANDOORI SKEWERS
Makes 10 small skewers
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3cm piece ginger, peeled, finely grated
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp chilli powder
600g deboned chicken thighs, cut into 3cm pieces
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, halved, thickly sliced
410g can tomato puree
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup cream
Wooden skewers, soaked overnight
Coriander leaves, to serve
Thread the chicken pieces onto wooden skewers. Place yoghurt, garlic, ginger and spices in a large dish. Add the chicken skewers and coat well – refrigerate for two hours to marinade. Heat the oil and butter in a large saucepan (big enough for the skewers) and sauté the onion until soft. Add the tomato puree and sauté until it turns brown. Add the skewers to the hot pot and seal on all sides until golden, then add the stock. Simmer for 10 minutes then add the cream. Heat a griddle pan until smoking hot then chargrill the skewers until black marks appear. Serve the skewers with fresh coriander and extra sauce on the side for dipping.
CURRIED CAULIFLOWER SAMOOSAS
1 medium cauliflower, cut into florets
1 onion, chopped
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2/3 cup olive oil
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1½ tsp tomato paste
Salt, to taste
2 tsp curry powder
1 tsp turmeric
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 pinch cayenne pepper
40g coriander leaves, chopped
18 samoosa or springroll wrappers
Preheat oven to 220°C. Put cauliflower florets, onion and chickpeas in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, tomato paste, spices, and salt. Pour dressing over vegetables; toss to coat. Spread vegetables in a single layer onto a sheet pan. Roast vegetables until tender and roasty-toasty, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes. Taste vegetables and add salt if needed. Mix in fresh coriander.
Take a strip of pastry (7cm wide and 20cm long) and hold it in your right hand. Make a triangle shape at the bottom by folding a flap of pastry upwards, and fill this triangle pocket with a dessert spoon or two of the filling. Now fold that triangle shape to align with the strip (make sure that the bottom corner is parallel with the strip). Then fold the triangle over again and seal it closed with some paste (make the paste by mixing a half a cup of flour and 30ml water until it has the texture of glue) on your finger.
Fill a pot midway with oil and heat until almost boiling (test with a bit of pastry – drop it in and if it bubbles then the oil is hot enough). Drop in the samoosas one by one (only cook three or four at a time, depending on the size of the pot) and deep fry until golden brown. Drain on some paper towel.
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