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Oyster Pakoras with Pesto, Dill and Lemon © Gurpareet Bains
Oyster Pakoras with Pesto, Dill and Lemon © Gurpareet Bains

Oyster Pakoras with Pesto, Dill and Lemon

This recipe is taken from an A-List chef, Gurpareet Bains debute recipe book, Indian SuperFood (£12.99 Absolute Press). His mouthwatering dishes are super healthy, so it's no wonder that he counts Gwyneth Paltrow and Goldie Hawn among his fans.

Profoundly inspired by an air of simplicity from the Japanese kitchen, these pakoras skilfully match the right amount of spice to complement the tantalizing and fresh ocean flavors of the oysters, without overwhelming them.

Naturally, and as you might expect, oysters aren’t celebrated as a superfood without justification - they are, in fact, nature’s highest source of zinc, which is essential for the body’s immune function and wound-healing capacity.

1 onion, cut into quarters
4 garlic cloves, peeled
1 green chili
7 tablespoons gram flour
¾ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garam masala
12 oysters ‘shucked’ and on the half shell
olive oil or vegetable oil, for shallow frying
6 teaspoons Punch and Gusto Fresh
pesto to serve
a few lemon wedges and chopped
fresh dill, to serve

How to make:
1. First, you will need to prepare the pakora batter. To do this, place the onion, garlic, chili, gram flour, salt, garam masala and 3 tablespoons cold water into a food processor and blend until you have a batter that resembles a ‘runny’ porridge mixture - to get the right consistency you may need to add a little more cold water or gram flour.

2. Pour the batter into a bowl. Mix the oysters into the batter, making sure they are thoroughly coated.

3. Pour enough oil into a deep saucepan so that the oil is at least 3cm deep, then heat over a high heat until the oil is almost smoking.

4. Take the oysters out of the batter individually, shaking off any excess batter mix (discard any leftover batter). Fry in the hot oil for 15-20 seconds or until the oysters are golden brown all over - you may need to turn them over in the oil. Remove with a spatula and drain on kitchen paper.

5. Serve the oyster pakoras immediately on their shells, each with a 1/3 teaspoon dollop of the pesto, a squeeze of lemon and a pinch of chopped dill. These are best served on their own.


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