Happy Ramadan Everyone!!! I hope this month has been going really well for all of you. It’s a tough Ramadan here, it’s so hot and to all those working outside in the heat, please take care of yourselves. You must ensure that you stay hydrated throughout the fast. This is also a month of charity, and please remember the under-privileged section of our society in your prayers and help them in as many ways as you can.
Moving on from my mom advice, it’s my absolute favorite month and I cannot be happier. I don’t know if all of you remember but I have some great memories of Ramadan from my childhood. I still feel like a child, excited about all the food and obviously about Eid. How are all your Eid preps going? ( oh see I get so easily distracted by the mere thought of Eid :s ). Even though I am not able to fast any more due to some health issues, I still celebrate iftaar along with all the “rozay-daar” (fasting people) in my family.
Every Ramadan I feel like I have so much to do and so little time, this year has been really busy so far with my kids, who are at home for their summer vacations, it’s fun but exhausting (mostly exhausting). It’s tough to come up with the right kind of iftaar menu for them, one is team Pakora and the others are in team Samosa. It’s hard to pick a winner but I am personally routing for team Samosa (in secret though, you have to be impartial as a mom). Apart from these regulars at my table, the kids keep asking me to make one new snack every day (requires a lot of creativity on my part and a bit of memory loss on theirs). Some are hits the others (read a lot) are misses. The hits are the ones that make my life a little easier. When I can’t decide I just make one of them.
My first post in this holy month, is an all time winner at our house, my kids love it and get easily distracted. Simple chicken pockets, these are easy to make and store. I’m sure all of you have made these pockets before, probably with a different name (functionally they are very similar to samosas albeit structurally different). A pocket is a single piece of folded or hollowed bread, such as a pita, tortilla, or even a wrapping (such as the ones used to make egg rolls) cooked with a filling/stuffing (source: Google). I learned this recipe a long time ago and funny enough it was labeled chicken doughnuts. Now that messes with my existing food nomenclature and my concept of doughnuts a bit too much, and so over the years I realized that this was just a made-up name :).
A basic pocket sandwich uses just one single piece of folded dough but just for my own convenience I cut two circles and overlap them. I like the resulting shape, anyways I love these because these are so versatile and you can experiment with various filling. I’m making a simple chicken filling that is time and kids tested. Just writing about these makes my mouth water. You can substitute a vegetarian filling or even leftovers. These taste good with almost everything (and on their own as well).
For the dough:
- 3 cup flour
- 1 packet instant yeast
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp dry milk
- 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
- 1 egg
- In a large bowl mix together all the dry ingredients.
- Now make a hole in the center of the flour mix and add the butter and egg.
- Mix it with a fork.
- Knead the dough using luke-warm water, cover and put aside to rise for at least an hour or until it doubles in size.
Behold, the filling:
- flour (to sprinkle)
- 1 cup shredded chicken (cooked)
- 1 tsp butter
- salt, to taste
- 1/2 tsp crushed black pepper
- 1/2 cup cabbage
- 1 green chili, chopped
- 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
- 1 spring onions, chopped
- Turn the stove on and melt the butter on low heat. Mix together the shredded chicken, crushed black pepper and salt. Cook this for a few minutes.
- Add the cabbage, cilantro and spring onions/scallions. If you are the adventurous type and are able to handle spicy food then add green chillis as well. Mix well and turn off the heat.
- Set aside for now.
- Whisk one egg and set aside, we will use this an egg-wash, and for securing the edges of the pockets.
- On a flat surface, sprinkle some flour and roll out the dough.
- Using a round shaped cutter, cut circles.
- Now place the filling that we made earlier in the center of one circle. this is our circle 1. Apply egg-wash on the sides.
- Now apply egg wash on the sides of a circle with no filling inside. circle 2. Using this circle cover the first circle.
- Using a fork, close the sides really well.
- Repeat and make all of the pockets first. cover and let them sit for about 2 hours.
- Apply the egg-wash on top when ready for frying.
- Now heat oil in a pan and deep-fry until golden brown.
- You can also bake these, pre-heat the oven on 220°c and bake for about 10-12 minutes.
- Serve warm.
I prefer frying these over baking as I feel frying gives them a better texture and they are softer (could me my bias towards Samosas). Baking is healthier, so you get the best of both worlds but they can turn out a bit dry (still scrumptious, though).
I love suhoor and iftaar, the whole family gathers around the table. It is something that has created a lot of happy memories for me and I want to pass these cherished memories to my kids and my readers. With this blog, I think I do this with all of you every time I post a recipe. Thank you for all your love and support. Happy Ramadan 🙂 Let’s dig in.
Aa jao bachon “chicken pockets” tayyar hain!!