Cutlets are deep fried appetizer or snack.Perfectly goes along with rice and meat curries too.Cutlets are cuties, no one can eat just one…Veg cutlets have potatoes that hug the vegs and wears a coat of bread crumbs and dive into the hot oil ,ever ready to please u.
Even though I am a sweet lover I have been faithful to cutlet.During my high school years on the way back home there’s this bakery I always talk about ,has a van coming in the evening with a fresh pile of cutlets on a steel tray and I like a programmed robot walked straight to the store taking in whiffs of fried bread and masala .Ah don’t remind me! I am drooling still!!It is like a savory heaven for a weary mind.
Over the years I find that cutlet is such a crowd pleaser that it vanishes even before everyone gets to try it.It is one of the staple items that I take for potluck and I can see the hungry souls prowl on it.So now a days I make two packs.The second pack is for the Sati Savitris (who eat in the end ) never get to try half the good stuff !!!
Ingredients – (makes around 30 small cutlets)
Carrot-1(chopped into tiny pieces)
Peas-1/2 to 3/4 th cup
Onion-1 red,chopped finely Green chili- 1 chopped finely (de seed if u want)
Garam masala powder-1 tsp or (cardamom-1,cloves-3 ,cinnamon -a small piece powdered) Pepper powder- 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder- 1/4 tsp Chili powder- 1/2 to 1 tsp Coriander powder-1 tsp Ginger garlic paste-1 1/2 tsp Salt to taste
All purpose flour -1 tbsp mixed with 1/2 cup water or 1 egg -beaten well adding 2 tsp water Bread crumbs to coat.
1.Pressure cook potatoes till cooked well.Remove from water immediately after the pressure goes down.So it does not absorb water.Peel and coarsely mash when heat is bearable.Keep aside.
2.Cook carrot in boiling water when half done add peas and cook only till 3/4 th done.I like to spread it on two layers of paper towel till all the water is absorbed.
3. In a pan heat 2 tsp of oil add ginger garlic paste saute until raw smell goes then put the onion saute until it become soft and golden brown ,add salt now put all the powders saute until a nice aroma comes then turn in the carrot and peas .Saute until everything is dry.Remove from heat let it cool down a bit.
4.To the mixture add potatoes mashed ,check salt.Shape it into round balls or flatten it as u like with ur palms.I like to make small cutlets because it fries faster and easier to handle.
5.To coat keep the batter/egg ready .Dip each cutlet in it completely and take it out immediately dredge in bread crumbs so that the crumbs stick on it all around.Shake off excess .Do the dipping and dredging as fast as u can to avoid any moisture seeping into the cutlet.
6.Pour oil almost till half of the pan( enough to cover the cutlets).Heat it till u can feel it when u hold ur palm above it but not smoking.Now slowly slide in cutlet through the edge of the pan .Never plop into hot oil.
Put only five at a time .Do not disturb it until it u see sides getting golden brown.Even if there is slight force applied it will break .
7.Turn and cook other side too till it is brown on both sides.Remove and put on paper towel.
Serve along with ketchup, Onion pickle/Sallas or grated carrot and vegs(seasoned with lime juice and salt)
OR along with rice,biriyani etc
Cutlet is a must have for Christmas menu in Kerala.
Do not leave potato in pressure cooker for long it will absorb water and the cutlets will not come out well.
Do ensure that there is no trace of moisture in the mixture .Cutlet will break when put in oil and become a mess.If you are a beginner then make one or two cutlets, fry it to make sure it comes out well .Switch off flame get the rest ready and fry.
If you find that cutlet is breaking apart add some bread crumbs or old bread ( torn into tiny pieces) to the mixture reshape again .This should be done before dipping and dredging.
Shake off excess bread crumbs well before frying or the crumbs will settle at the bottom and turn the oil black.Will try to settle on the cutlets and taste burnt.
Do not heat up oil too much as it browns the cutlet’s outside but inside (though cooked)won’t cook evenly.
If oil is not hot enough the cutlets would absorb a lot of oil and become soggy.
Note that I have not used beans ,I feel it makes the cutlet soggy and so is coriander leaves.
Do not make the binding batter watery.It will not coat evenly.
The coated cutlets freezes well in an air tight container for up to a month .Ya! u need to thaw before frying 🙂 .
I know ! cutlet is tricky but once you get the hang of it , it becomes breeze.I have jotted everything I can think of to make it fail proof .Oh by the way , the notes given above are some of the disasters I met with in initial cooking days.It is all about trials till u succeed.
Now if u ask me when do u make cutlets ? Actually I need no reason,I make it whenever my heart desires to bite into a crispy brown heaven .Tusker loves to taste test till he is full.
Let me know what was ur experience, good or bad !!