The other night after a couple of bevs out with some friends we ended up at the glowing fluroscent lights of a Sydney culinary institute - Indian Home Diner, home of the original Indian kebab.
Come 12:37am hoards of hungry, tiddly people line up for an 8 buck handful of goodness: naan bread stuffed with roasted chicken tikka thighs and a deep fried aloo chaat potato ball. The result is a steaming hot snack that is similar to a late night doner kebab, but way better because it's stuffed with potato and wrapped in a godamn naan. Genius.
I woke up the next morning with tikka stained fingers, a hangover and slight food remorse. As I dragged my body onwards on my walk to work and looked down at my bright orange fingertips, I decided I wouldn't ever take it back.
Below is a recipe for a more holier than thou Indian street food snack. Pudla is a crepe made out of besan (chickpea) flour that's eaten simply, dipped in aromatic sauces and hot pickles. I decided to add a fried egg, crunchy baked sweet potato, avocado and a coriander pesto to make it more of a meal. And while it may not be nearly as satisfying as an Indian Home Diner kebab after too many beers, your body will feel better for skipping the deep fried potato....or not.
Indian Chickpea Crepes with Fried Egg
Makes about 6 crepes
1 1/3 cups besan chickpea flour
1 cup water
2 teaspoons ground turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes
Salt and pepper
Coconut oil, to fry
1/2 a big bunch of coriander
Finely sliced white part of a handful of spring onion
1 small knob of ginger
1 garlic clove
Good few glugs of olive oil
Juice from 1/2 a lime
2 small sweet potato
Wedges of avocado
Sliced red chilli and spring onion
To make the coriander pesto combine all ingredients in a mortar and pestle and bash it all out until a chunky sauce is formed. Alternatively, whiz all ingredients in a food processor. Set aside.
Thinly slice the sweet potato into wafer thin rounds. Brush in melted coconut oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Lay out onto a lined baking tray and place into a preheated oven at 200 degrees celsius. You want this baby hot to make the sweet potato crispy and crunchy. Cook for about 15 minutes, be sure to check in on them often. Set aside once cooked.
Combine besan flour, salt, pepper, turmeric and water in a food processor or blender. Blend on high until smooth, and slightly bubbly. If it is thick, add more water. It kind of wants to be just thicker than water consistency. Pour into a good pouring jug - like something you would use to make pancakes.
Heat coconut oil on a medium high heat in a pan. Once the pan is hot, pour in about 1/3 cup crepe batter, depending on how big you want them. Let the crepe cook away for a couple of minutes. When bubbles start to form over the crepe, flip it over and cook for a further few minutes on the other side. Repeat until you have enough pancakes to feed your mates.
Serve crepes topped with a soft, fried egg, pesto, wedges of avocado, fresh chilli and spring onion, fresh lime and a glass of cold beer. Namaste.