Khasta Kachori a Crispy Lentil-Filled Pastry

Close-up of two kachories

uniquely india / Getty Images

Prep: 7 hrs
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 7 hrs 30 mins
Servings: 12 servings

Khasta means "crispy" in Hindi. Delicious khasta kachori is a popular snack in Northern and Central India. One bite and you will see why!

This popular North Indian snack can be found at most Indian cafés. Make a batch and keep them in an air-tight container for up to a week. Simply reheat them in your oven when you are ready to snack on some! The moong dal for the filling needs to be pre-soaked so keep that in mind for prep time. Learn how to make Khasta Kachori with this recipe for 12 medium-sized pastries.


  • For the Pastry:
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon melted ghee
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup very cold water
  • For the Filling:
  • 1/4 cup Moong Daal ​(soaked for four to six hours in advance)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1 teaspoon dry red chili flakes
  • 1 tablespoon dried raw mango powder (aamchoor)
  • 1/4 teaspoon asafetida
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Vegetable (or canola or sunflower) oil for deep frying

Steps to Make It

  1. Start by making the pastry. Put the flour, melted ghee, vegetable/canola/sunflower cooking oil and salt into a deep mixing bowl. Bring together using your fingertips.

  2. Now slowly add a little of the very cold water at a time, making a dough. Knead until you have a medium-firm dough. Keep aside to rest while you prepare the filling.

  3. To make the filling, first set up a pan to heat on medium. Now add the 1 tablespoon vegetable/canola/sunflower cooking oil and heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds and sauté until the spluttering stops. When this happens, add the pre-soaked moong dal, coriander powder, ginger paste, garlic paste, dry red chili flakes, dried raw mango powder/aamchoor and salt to taste. Stir to mix well.

  4. Sauté until the mixture begins to darken and turn aromatic. The filling is now ready. While cooking the filling, stir frequently to prevent any burning or sticking. Do not add water. Once the filling is ready, keep aside to cool for later use.

  5. Once the filling is ready, keep aside to cool for later use.

  6. Very lightly flour a clean, flat surface and knead the dough you made earlier, again. Divide it into 12 equal-sized portions.

  7. Take one portion and flatten it into a circle that is 3 inches to 4 inches wide. The edges should be thicker than the center. Now spoon a tablespoon-full of the cool filling into the center of the circle. Begin to gather up the edges in a pleating/pinching motion so that soon you will have made a small bag/purse with the filling closed inside, like a dumpling. Flatten this bag/purse and keep aside. Do the same for the remaining portions of dough until all are used up. Let rest for three to five minutes while the vegetable/canola/sunflower cooking oil for deep frying heats up.

  8. To heat the oil for deep-frying, put it into a deep wok and set up on medium heat. You know the oil is ready for deep frying the Kachoris when a tiny ball of dough, dropped into it, will sizzle and rise slowly to the surface. If the ball does not rise, the oil is still cold. If it rises immediately, the oil is too hot. The temperature of the oil is critical to turning out good, true khasta kachoris, so watch it carefully!

  9. While the oil is heating, take one filled kachori at a time and use the heel of your palm to flatten into a circle 3 inches to 4 inches wide on a very lightly floured surface. Press the edges slightly more than the center so that they are thinner. Do this for all the filled kachoris. They are now ready to fry when the oil is hot enough.

  10. When the oil is ready, drop one to two kachoris at a time to fry. Do not overcrowd the wok. Use a slotted spoon and when the kachori has fried on one side for two to three minutes turn to see if it is golden. If it is, this side is done. Now allow the other side to fry until golden too. When this happens, drain the khasta kachoris with the slotted spoon, remove and place on kitchen towels to drain further.

  11. To serve, when slightly cooler poke a hole in the center of one side of a Khasta Kachori with your index finger and pour in some tamarind chutney and mint-coriander chutney. Accompany with a steaming cup of masala chai sit back, relax and enjoy the fruits of your labor!