I got this recipe from my younger sister. Amazingly, I've searched many Indian cookbooks and have not found a similar appetizer/ tea-time snack. It's delicious and always a big hit with my American and Indian friends. Enjoy!
Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl EXCEPT baking soda.
Add plain yogurt 2 to 3 tsp at a time and stir. Then add a tsp or two until you have a stiff dough. If the dough become a little soft, add sufficient sooji to obtain a stiff dough.
Cover the mixture with plastic wrap or wet cloth to prevent drying. Let it rest for 30 minutes.
Add BAKING SODA and stir vigorously for 2 minutes to start the "rising action" of the soda. Add a little yogurt if the dough is too stiff.
Heat oil for deep frying to 350 deg F. With a small ice-cream scoop, or a tablespoon (using another tbs to scoop out)carefully drop one scoop at a time near the surface of the oil. The size of the scoop should be about 3/4" dia. round. The dough will rise to the surface in 2 or 3 seconds. Keep moving the fritters with a slotted frying spoon. Be sure not to crowd the fritters in the frier. Fry until golden brown.
Drain on paper towels. Finish the remaining dough until all the fritters are done.
Serve hot. Enjoy with ketchup. Alternatively, for a more authentic experience, try corriander or mint chutney, tamarind chutney, or other chutneys available at Indian grocery stores.
You may need to slightly adjust the quantity of spices, on your next try, to suit your taste.
Leftovers can be reheated in a microwave for 15 SECONDS. Heat for 5 more seconds, if not hot enough. Beware that too long in the microwave could make the soft fritters hard.