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Gram flour makes very good pakoras without using egg. To make the batter, mix up gram flour and spices to taste - cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, turmeric, black pepper, maybe cinnamon - with a little sodium bicarbonate or baking powder for crispy airiness, and salt if you like. Add water slowly while mixing, to make a soft batter - the thinner the batter, the thinner the coating on the vegetables. Too thin, and it'll just run off; it should be just a little bit too thick to pour.

Almost any vegetable you like can be dipped in this batter and fried in half an inch or more of medium-hot oil (~180°C) until golden and crispy, which should take about 7 minutes although some vegetables can be cooked quicker than that. Good candidates for pakora-battering include chopped peppers, aubergine, baby corn, cauliflower florets, thinly sliced potato, green beans, spinach, onion rings... be creative. Usually the battered globs should be about big enough to fit into a heaped tablespoon, but it's sometimes best to take them out by hand and let any excess drip off. You can also use the same batter to make corn fritters, or add a lot of seeds to it - sesame, sunflower, whatever - and fry it quickly just like that. These seed snacks can be eaten hot or cold. You can even fry the batter on its own.

Pakoras are at their best served with good chutney, but they seem to go well with most sauces or with just a little salt.

Also known as pakorhas, pakoris, bhajias or bhajis, as in onion bhaji.