This is one of many different kofta dishes we’ve been doing since I first took a shine to a simple basic recipe in a book by
PUT THE YOGHURT in a bowl and sift the gram flour over it. Chop the pistachios and add them to the bowl. Slice the chillies in half lengthways, then chop them into thin half-rounds and add these to the bowl with the cumin seeds, turmeric, salt and coriander. Stir everything together to get a thick batter - add the soda just before you begin deep-frying the kofta.
Cook the onion in a little oil for a few minutes, then add the garlic and spices and continue cooking until the onion is soft. Add the tomatoes and stew them until they break down, then add the coconut and the water. Simmer for ten minutes, then puree the sauce, sieve out the solids and return the liquid to the pan. Add the cream and boil briskly for one minute. The consistency should be that of a thin creamy soup, which is what it is really, I suppose. Keep it warm, or set it aside to be reheated as you need it.
Deep-fry the kofta by carefully sliding teaspoonfuls into hot oil, preferably at about 180°C/350°F, in batches. Cook them until golden brown, turning them once. Keep batches warm in an oven while you cook the rest. At the same time, take the kale off the stalks, coarsely chop it and cook it in boiling water for a few minutes. Ladle the sauce into bowls, put six or seven kofta in each one and tuck little bunches of kale in around them. Scatter some fresh coriander over each bowl and serve with a pile of warm pancakes.
TAKE THE BLACK SEEDS from the cardamom pods and discard the pods. Crush the seeds in a grinder. Sift the flours, salt, lime rind and cardamom. Whisk the egg into the coconut milk and the lime juice, then whisk this into the flours. This should give you a thick pouring batter. Heat a large frying pan to a medium-low heat. Brush it very lightly with oil, then pour in one to three small ladlefuls of the batter, about one tablespoon each to give a diameter of about 5cm. Fry the pancakes for about two minutes, then flip them over and fry the other side. Turn them out on to a plate in a random pile - they won’t stick to each other. If you make them in advance, and you can - up to a day - they reheat very well in a low oven.
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