“Viazikarai” (also spelled “Viazi Karai”) is a popular snack in Kenya and other East African countries. It is a Swahili term that means “potato bhajia” or “potato fritters”.

Viazi Karai is a quick and easy snack to prepare as the ingredients are readily available. Many people enjoy this dish because it can be paired with a variety of accompaniments. Adding homemade or store-bought sauce enhances the flavor of the dish, and it is best served hot with a hint of pepper.

If you want to make this mouthwatering delicacy, let’s dive into the recipe and ingredients of Viazi Karai without any further delay.

See Other Recipes-Mexican Sweet Potatoes and Bombay Potatoes Recipe

Viazi Karai close up in a blue plate on wooden background

Viazi Karai Ingredients

To make Viazi Karai, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Potatoes: The main ingredient in this dish, potatoes are peeled and cut into chunks that are then mixed with the batter and fried to create the crispy fritters.
  • Chickpea flour: Also known as gram flour or besan, this ingredient is the base for the batter that coats the potatoes. It is a high-protein and gluten-free flour made from ground chickpeas.
  • Turmeric powder: A spice that gives the Viazi Karai its bright yellow color and adds a warm, earthy flavor.
  • Salt: Adds flavor to the batter and enhances the taste of the dish.
  • Red chili powder (or cayenne pepper): Adds heat and a spicy kick to the dish. The amount used can be adjusted to suit personal taste preferences.
  • Cumin powder: A spice that adds a warm and slightly nutty flavor to the dish
  • Water: Used to make the batter for the Viazi Karai..
  • Garlic paste (optional): Adds a garlicky flavor to the batter and enhances the overall taste of the dish.
  • Cilantro leaves: Used as a garnish, cilantro adds a fresh and citrusy flavor to the dish.
  • Oil (for frying): Used to fry the Viazi Karai until they are crispy and golden brown. Any type of vegetable oil with a high smoke point can be used for deep fryings, such as canola oil or peanut oil.
  • Tomato Sauce: A sauce that can be used as a dip. It adds a tangy and slightly sweet flavor that complements the spiciness of the fritters

Boiled potatoes

How To Prepare Viazi Karai

  • Peel potatoes, cut into chunks, and boil them in salted water until they are tender about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the batter.
  • Mix a cup of chickpea flour with a touch of turmeric powder, chili, and cumin. Add water and thoroughly mix to form a smooth batter. Add the cilantro leaves, and garlic paste, It should not be very thick or thin but should have a fair mixture that will stick to the potatoes.
  • Drain potatoes, and plunge them into cold water.
  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. 
  • Take pieces of the potato and mix them into the batter. 
  • Fry the potato fritters until the surface is crunchy, about 3 minutes. Flip potatoes and fry on the side until golden. 
  • Serve with tomato sauce or chili sauce. 

Viazi Karai frying in a skillet

What are the Best Accompaniments for Viazi Karai?

There are several options to choose from when it comes to serving Viazi Karai:

  1. Chutney or kachumbari: A spicy and tangy dip made of mint, coriander, and onions that complements the spiciness of the fritters.
  2. Tomato sauce: A tangy and slightly sweet sauce that complements the spiciness of the fritters.
  3. Cilantro leaves: Used as a garnish, cilantro adds a fresh and citrusy flavor to the dish.
  4. Tamarind sauce: A sweet and tangy sauce made of tamarind pulp, sugar, and spices that pair well with the spiciness of the fritters.
  5. Hot sauce: For those who like it extra spicy, a hot sauce can be served as a dip for the fritters.
  6. Lemon wedges: Squeezing lemon juice over the fritters adds a tangy flavor and cuts through the richness of the dish.
  7. Onion rings: Thinly sliced onions that are lightly battered and fried can be served alongside the Viazi Karai for a crunchy and flavorful accompaniment.

What are the Nutritional Benefits of Viazi Karai?

Viazi Karai can be a healthy and nutritious snack when made with healthy ingredients. Here are some of the nutritional benefits:

  1. Potatoes – are a good source of fiber, potassium, and vitamin C, which are essential for maintaining a healthy immune system, digestion, and heart health.
  2. Chickpea flour – is high in protein and gluten-free, making it a healthy alternative to regular flour.
  3. Onions – are a good source of fiber, vitamins B6 and C, potassium, and manganese, which are essential for maintaining healthy bones, skin, and hair.
  4. The spices – used in Viazi Karai such as turmeric, cumin, and chili powder contain antioxidants that can help protect against disease and inflammation.
  5. The use of herbs like cilantro in the recipe can add vitamins A and C, as well as antioxidants, which are important for maintaining healthy skin and eyes.

When made with healthy ingredients and cooked in a healthy way (such as using minimal oil for frying), Viazi Karai can be a delicious and nutritious snack or meal.

Here are some frequently asked questions 

 

1. Is Viazi Karai vegan?

Yes, Viazi Karai is a vegan snack as it is made with plant-based ingredients and does not contain any animal products.

2. Is Viazi Karai healthy?

Viazi Karai can be a healthy and nutritious snack when made with healthy ingredients and cooked in a healthy way (such as using minimal oil for frying). Potatoes are a good source of fiber, potassium, and vitamin C, while chickpea flour is high in protein and gluten-free. The spices usedalso contain antioxidants that can help protect against disease and inflammation.

For a low-fat recipe, place battered potatoes in an air fryer basket and cook for 15 minutes, at 380 F. turning halfway. 

3. Where can I find Viazi Karai?

Viazi Karai is a popular street food in East Africa and is often sold by vendors in small roadside stalls. It can also be made at home using readily available ingredients from most grocery stores or supermarkets.

The Bottom Line

Viazi Karai is a meal of Arabic origin since the Swahili people majorly made the food. It is one of the staple foods in Swahili-dominated nations after rice. The article has offered the recipe with the vital ingredients to ensure you have all you need.

Other Potato Recipes-
  1. Crispy Roast Potatoes
  2. Duchess Potatoes
  3. Vegan Creamed Potatoes
  4. Rosemary Roasted Potatoes
  5. Roasted Asparagus and Potatoes

Viazi Karai

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Viazi karai on a blue bowl on wooden background

Viazi Karai

“Viazikarai” (also spelled “Viazi Karai”) is a popular snack in Kenya and other East African countries. It is a Swahili term that means “potato bhajia” or “potato fritters”.
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Entrée, Main Course
Cuisine: East African, Swahili
Keyword: Viazi karai
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 447kcal

Ingredients

  • 8 medium potatoes
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • Coriander Leaves
  • Green Pepper
  • tomato sauce
  • oil for frying

Instructions

  • Scrub and peel the potatoes, cut into chunks, and boil them in salted water until they are tender about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the batter.
  • Mix a cup of chickpea flour with a touch of turmeric powder, chili, cumin, and salt. Add water and thoroughly mix to form a smooth batter. Add the cilantro leaves, and garlic, It should not be very thick or thin but should have a fair mixture that will stick to the potatoes
  • Drain potatoes, and plunge them into cold water.
  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat
  • The surface can be crunchy or soft, depending on the layering you like. The only goal is to ensure that the potato is fully cooked.
  • Dip the potatoes in sizzling hot oil.
  • Fry the potato mixture until the surface is crunchy.
  • Fry the potato mixture until the surface is crunchy, about 3 minutes. Flip potatoes and fry on the side until golden.
  • The surface can be crunchy or soft, depending on the layering you like. The only goal is to ensure that the potato is fully cooked.
  • . Serve with tomato sauce or chili sauce.

Nutrition

Calories: 447kcal | Carbohydrates: 92g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Sodium: 631mg | Potassium: 2063mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 30IU | Vitamin C: 85mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 5mg