Bara is a popular Guyanese/Indian snack made from lentils and is essentially, a fried fritters (I just really like saying the word fritter 🙂 ). This snack is typically served at Hindu festivals, weddings, religious conventions, and casual dinner parties.
My mother would always be the ‘go-to’ bara maker in the family, if there was ever a need. And while I don’t make these very often, I’m happy that this is one of the recipes she taught me, and now I’m sharing with all of you.
Guyanese Style Bara Recipe Step-By-Step
What You’ll Need
- 2 cups of split pea flour (they have organic ones out there)
- 2 cup flour
- Water for mixing!
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp salt
- Blended seasoning mixture of
- 1 medium onion
- 1/4 habanero/scotch bonnet pepper
- 3 cloves of garlic
- Handful of cilantro
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tsp ginger, ground
- 2 tsp of curry powder
- 5 chopped scallions (Chinese onion)
- Vegetable oil, or ghee (1/2 a liter) this is for the frying, so you’ll pretty much need a generous amount.
Cooking The Bara
- Heat oil in a large cast iron pot to high-medium heat
- Mix ingredients together into a large bowl slowly adding 1-2 cups of water. This can be a sticky one, so make sure your hands are damp to avoid the batter from not mixing properly and/or sticking to your hands
- Add chopped scallions, and lightly mix again with damp hands.
- Grab a small portion, make a ball, and flatten it with the palm of your hand. Gently add it to the oil mixture and fry. This should go without saying, but be careful with the hot oil as your fingers can come pretty close when dropping the bara pieces in (frying anything for that matter, you should proceed with caution). Place about 4-5 pieces at a time, so it “fry’s up” perfectly, and they won’t stick together.
- Fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes of each side, and flip to avoid burning.
- Remove from pot, and place in a tray with paper-towels. This will soak up some of the excessive oil from frying.
- Before frying bara pieces, test out a small drop so you can estimate the heat, and how long it takes to cook and if you need to lower, or upper the heat.
- Split pea flour can be found at your local Indian grocery store, OR you can purchase any organic based product. It just won’t have the same ‘homemade’ taste you crave!
- This should be served with a chutney/achaar based sauce.
- You can make the dhal/lentil powder yourself, but it’s time consuming and required prep work the day prior. Recipe to be posted at a later date.
- Sift dry ingredients for fluffiness.