Pickled Bamboo Shoot Fritters (Kirla Bajo)
Bamboo shoots are pickled in most Konkani homes during bamboo season every year. With onset of monsoon, when there’s an excess of season’s glut, surplus bamboos are pickled for use later during the year. All you need to know on how to pickle fresh bamboo shoots is here.
A lot of Konkani cuisine delicacies are prepared using fresh and pickled bamboo shoots. You can use just pickled bamboo shoots or bamboo shoots that have been pickled for a year or two to make bamboo shoot fritters. Bamboo shoot fritters are crispy, crunchy, spicy and delicious when made right. You can serve them as a starter or as a side dish for lunch, dinner.
Pungent smell and taste of bamboo shoots is an acquired taste. It might take some getting used to. :-) Konkani’s have a flair for bamboo shoots, be it fresh or pickled.
These bamboo shoot fritters are called kirla bajo in Konkani, kirlu means bamboo, bajo refers to fritters in Konkani.
- 4 pickled bamboo shoots
- 1 cup dosa rice (medium grained rice)
- 5-6 dried red chillies
- 1 lemon sized tamarind
- Salt to taste
Preparation Time: 45 minutes
- Remove 4 pickled bamboo shoots out of brine and place them immersed in a bowl of water.
- Change the water every 30 minutes. Replace it with fresh water every time. Do this for atleast 1-4 hours. Do this depending on how salty the bamboo shoots are. How salty the bamboo shoots are, depends on how long they have been pickled/stored in brine.
- Meanwhile soak dosa rice/medium grained rice for a minimum of 30 minutes.
- After soaking bamboo shoots in many batches of fresh water, slice them thinly. If your slices are thick, smash each slice a little using a pestle. They should hold shape and shouldn't break into pieces.
- Grind the rice batter. Grind dosa rice, dried red chillies, tamarind and salt together into a smooth paste using as little water as possible.
- We need a semi thick batter. Batter consistency should be such that each bamboo shoot piece should hold a layer of batter around it. It should neither be too thick nor too thin. If it’s too watery it'll drip off the bamboo pieces. With a semi thick batter you’ll get a thin coating of batter around bamboo pieces and get crispy, crunchy, fried bamboo shoots. When the batter’s thick in consistency, you’ll get a thick coating of batter around bamboo pieces, which will make the fritters soft.
- If at all your batter gets too watery, add in a tablespoon or two of gram flour to thicken it.
- Heat up oil for deep frying. Once it’s rolling hot, dip each bamboo shoot piece into the rice batter and add them one by one into hot oil.
- Fry them until they are cooked through and are crispy.
- Serve them hot as a starter or as a side dish for lunch, dinner.
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