In a large bowl, mix together the plain flour, red chili flakes, salt and baking powder. Slowly add the water and mix to make a batter. The batter should be thick and have a texture resembling double cream.
Peel and finely slice the onion and the garlic. Peel and grate the ginger. Chop all of the coriander. Thinly slice the fennel. Place the chick peas in a blender and blitz until coarse. Add all these ingredients to the batter and combine well.
Place the sunflower oil in a large saucepan and bring to a temperature of 175'C.
Once the oil is hot, carefully add spoonfuls of the pakora mixture to the pan, taking care not to overcrowd the pan. Fry until the pakoras are golden brown and then drain on a cooling rack placed over kitchen paper to allow the excess oil to drain.
Add the water and the palm sugar to a pan. Bring to the boil, making to break up the palm sugar and ensure it has dissolved. Add the tomato puree and tamarind paste, and stir. Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
«Avoid overcrowding the pan when cooking the pakoras - too many at once will result in them being greasy. Try using cauliflower and spinach instead of onions or using natural yoghurt as a dip.»