This recipe for palak ki tikki or spinach tikki is what I am craving every happy hour even if it is only the 3 of us and a baby. It is perfection. I know not many of us are having happy hour right now, so these work as a light dinner too. We are only a few days out to spring, I can already feel it in the air and I think this recipe is easy to take with you for a socially distant spring picnic. It is also great for meal prep and will make great spring time sliders. I usually prep and shape the tikkis on the weekend and simply pan fry it on the day we want to eat it.
I love serving this tikki with a Tomato Raisin chutney, it is a fantastic combination. The chutney is sweet spicy and tangy and so delectable. I make it with cherry tomatoes but Romas would work well too. The soft juicy raisin complements the tangy tomatoes and the pairing really works.
My mom is usually the queen of potato burger patties. Whenever she comes to visit she makes and freezes batch for me. And every time we heat it up to eat it I am so appreciative of the effort. This tikki reminds me of her burger patties only it is a much smaller version eaten more like canapés or small sliders.
How to make the perfect Tikkis
- Use a floury or a starchy potato, like russet or Idaho or Yukon (although it has lower starch than the other two). It tends to have less water and becomes nice and fluffy when cooked and mashed. A texture that is desirable for a good tikki.
- Instead of mashing the cooked potatoes grate them. It works like a potato ricer and the resulting texture is lighter. It is slightly more time-consuming, although it is really not that much more.
- Toast the chickpeas flour, it helps impart a nutty aroma that works with the flavours of the tikki.
The tikki recipe is from Chetna Makan's cookbook Healthy Indian Vegetarian. This book offers such a refreshing take on Indian food so you won't find many of the usual Indian fare in this book. It has simple, weeknight-friendly recipes with new and interesting flavours. Most recipes in this book require very little time or effort but everyone that I have made has been so fantastic. Although it is a vegetarian cookbook it offers plenty of vegan friendly recipes. For instance, the green tikki and the tomato raisin chutney featured in this post are both vegan recipes. It has quickly become my most used cookbook this year. Chetna has distilled the essence of everyday Indian cooking in this book, making every recipe accessible to all homecooks.
Potato pairs wonderfully with chaat masala, here is another recipe that I feature them together - Chaat Masala Potatoes
- 4-5 tablespoons (50 g) chickpea flour
- 1 + 2 tablespoons sunflower oil or any neutral oil
- 1 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 2-3 garlic cloves, grated
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 2 green chillies, finely chopped
- 150 grams spinach freshly chopped
- 2 medium potatoes, cooked and mashed
- 1 teaspoon chaat masala
- ¼ cup (60 g) roasted peanuts
- ½ teaspoon chilli powder
- ½ teaspoon amchur (optional)
Tomato Raisin Chutney
- 400 g Cherry Tomatoes or grape tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
- ¼ teaspoon fennel seeds
- ¼ teaspoon nigella seeds
- ¼ teaspoon methi seeds
- a pinch of asafotedia or hing
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 2 dried chillies
- ½ teaspoon chilli powder
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 20 grams raisins
Palak Ki Tikki
In a dry medium skillet, roast the chickpea flour over low to medium heat for 5 minutes, or until fragrant and beginning to change colour. Take it off the heat and tip it into a small bowl.
In the same skillet heat about add about a tablespoon of oil and bring to medium heat. Add ginger and garlic and cook for a minute until fragrant. Add peas and green chillies and cook for 2 minutes until softened.
Add spinach and cook, stirring, on high heat for 3-4 minutes. Until the spinach has wilted and there is no water left in the pan. Add the mashed potatoes, spices, and salt and mix till everything is well mixed.
Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Coarsely crush the peanuts with a mortar and pestle or roughly chop it. Add it to the potato peas and spinach mixture. Next, add in the roasted chickpea flour and mix well.
Take large spoonfuls and shape the mixture into tikkis or little cutlets.
Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan and once hot cook the tikkis on medium heat for 2-3 minutes until golden. Serve hot with chutney.
Any extras can be stored in the fridge for a day or two. Reheat in a hot oven and enjoy.
Tomato Raisin Chutney
Heat oil in a medium-size skillet. Add mustard, cumin, fennel, nigella and methi seeds. Let it sizzle for about 30 seconds. Add hing, dried chillies, coriander powder and chilli powder and stir for another thirty seconds.
Add cherry tomatoes and stir till the spices coat the cherry tomatoes. Let it cook and blister. Add salt and sugar.
Gently crush the tomatoes with the back of the spoon. Continue to cook on low heat for another 15 minutes, till tomatoes become thick and glossy.
Add in the raisins and cook for another 10 minutes till the raisins become soft. Take the chutney off the heat and let it cool.
Serve with the tikkis.
You can feel free to substitue the cherry tomatoes for roma and the raisins for chopped up Medjool dates.
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