Kachori are these yummy little potato balls that people here eat in soup served roadside called urojo. We love it and buy it at least twice a week in lieu of cooking dinner 🙂 Anni steals them from various neighbors and loves eating them plain. Me neighbor; who is also an amazing cook (and who already taught me biryani among many other things), invited me over this week to learn how to make kachori. Evy and I sat in her home while Anni ran around with the shule kids outside. Cooking here is often time and labor intensive but it is also always done in groups and because of that not such a chore. I think I have learned more and had some of the best conversations here with my hands dirty or elbow deep kneading or rolling something. We enjoyed talking and laughing and being together all while rolling a billion lil’ potato balls. The part of the house we were cooking in had no roof and rain threatened to destroy our lesson but luckily held off until we were able to move into the outdoor small hut they cook the food in. It was HOT in there but I got a front row seat and got to pitch in and use the Kiswahili phrase I have heard often “wanawake siyo wageni” “a woman is never a guest.” Today I tried them for myself and just when I could not remember how thick the batter was supposed to be my neighbor showed up to visit with three of her kids in tow! It was perfect timing and she helped me finish cooking while the kids rode bikes outside. We made about 60 and shared them with all the neighbors who were impressed I learned how to make them. Even Jason was shocked this Mzungu was able to pull off local kachori!
If you want to try here is the “recipe” (no real measurements in Swahili cooking but I included pictures and you can always skype me 🙂 They really are tamu sana (very delicious)…
Clean and peel potatoes (I used a kilo today) and then boil them until you can mash them with a fork. Drain water and let cool a bit. After they cool transfer to a bowl with plenty of space and use you hands to mash. Add the fresh juice of 2-3 limes and some salt (to taste). Then continue mashing with your hands until the mixture is very smooth. Add hot pepper sauce (here they use home made hot pepper sauce that is amazing or fresh chili peepers pounded together with salt). Add until the mashed potatoes are streaked with red and spicy yumminess (or to taste for lightweights 🙂
Then use well floured hands to roll into balls about this big…..
Make a batter of flour, water, and bezari (turmeric). Use mostly flour and water until you have a thick batter and then add about 1-2 tsp turmeric for color and taste. Dip the potato balls in to coat and fry for ONLY about 1 minute in REALLY hot oil and remove and drain them on brown paper or newspaper.
We had them for lunch with a yummy salad- just thinly sliced veggies with lime juice and salt. (I do not know how to make the soup yet but since you can buy it for about 20 cents I think we will just continue to get it roadside 🙂 Serve and share with neighbors & friends.