Quite possibly my best dish, very similar to Punjabi pakoras, with a subtle spicing difference and of course a combination of red or white onions, it’s a savoury dish I make without fresh coriander, saving that for the delicious and fresh tamarind dip which accompanies these little crispy fried, dumplings.
Garam Masala for this recipe, not curry, we need the bold heat against those sweet onions. Don’t be deceived by this recipe, there’s good spicing in these, the batter needs careful attention, it takes practise, take your time and I promise you, your guests will be bowled over.
A perfect snack, savoury, spicy and crunchy, serve with chilled alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks, tea, chai is especially nice. Fully freezable, can be baked in the oven straight from the freezer, just splash them with a little water so they don’t dry out.
Recently, I asked my friends in curry club which is their favourite dish that I cook and the gorgeous Snoops said bhajes, so this recipe is one for you, I look forward to you making them for me…. only joking, I’m not keen on onions!
Peel and core your onions before finely slicing, I use my food processor.
Place the onions into a big bowl.
Put your deep fat fryer to heat with the oil in the pan, to 180 c
You can use a big frying pan, but you do need the pan to be half full.
Carefully measure the spices and place them into the bowl with the onions, sieve the chick pea flour into the onions.
Give the bowl a mix as the onions will be a little wet and you need this batter to be as firm as possible, use your clean hands, get stuck in!
Try and keep one hand clean and the other to mix with.
Now, start adding a tablespoon of water, at a time, really sparingly, giving the bowl a good mix, until you have a firm batter where all the onions are coated, it needs to be a firm dough like texture.
Check the oil is at the right temperature, if you drop some bhaje mix into the oil, it should sizzle.
When you are happy with the temperature in the pan, place small teaspoons of the batter to fry, allowing them to take shape in the heat, before you turn them.
Don't over crowd your pan.
The bhajes take between 8 - 10 minutes to cook.
Allow the bhaje to take shape and then you may turn the bhaje over, just don't do it too soon.
Once you have turned the bhajes once, keep turning the bhajes for an even golden colour.
Once cooked, remove from the oil and drain on kitchen paper.
Continue to fry all the bhajes in small batches.
Serve hot with your favourite chutney, pickle or even tomato ketchup.
They make great sandwich or wrap fillings!