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Hot & Crispy Rainy Day Bhajiyas!

Hot & Crispy Rainy Day Bhajiyas!

Bhajiya is a snack that instantly reminds one of monsoons. Not just that, it’s a quick snack that can be eaten round the year at any time of the day to curb your hunger pangs. Crispy and satisfying these flavour packed fritters are everyone's favourite! Every family has their own version of Bhajiya batters and the vegetables they chose to make it with.

We've chosen two of our favourite Bhajiyas, the beloved classic Kanda Bhaji and the tasty twister, Palak Pakoda!

Hindi Video:

English Video:

 

KANDA BHAJIYA

The first recipe  that we are presenting is the most popular and quickest bhajiya - Kanda Bhajiya or Pyaaz ke Pakode, or as our friends call it overseas - Onion Fritters.

Serves : 4 | Preparation time : 10 mins | Cooking time : 10 mins

Ingredients

  • Onion (प्याज) : 2 Large Sized
  • Gram Flour (बेसन) : 1 1/2 cups
  • Red Chilli Powder (लाल मिर्च पाउडर) : 2 to 3 tsp as per taste
  • Turmeric Powder (हल्दी) : 1 tsp
  • Ajwain (Carom Seeds) (अजवाइन) : 1/2 tbsp
  • Asafoetida (हींग) : 1/4 tsp
  • Salt (नमक) : As per taste
  • Green Chillies (Optional) (हरी मिर्च) - 2 to 3 as per taste
  • Oil (तेल) : For frying

Utensils required

  • Knife
  • chopping board
  • Spoon
  • Deep Pan for frying
  • Skimmer / Slotted Spoon
  • Paper Towels

Method

  • Peel and cut onions into long and thin slices.
  • In a large bowl, sift gram flour to remove any impurities, if present.
  • Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, carom seeds, asafoetida and salt. Carom seeds and asafoetida help fight any unsettling feeling in the stomach that you may get after eating the bhajiyas and helps digest them better.
  • Mix this well and add in the onions.
  • This mix can be left to rest for a while so that the onions can release any moisture that builds up.
  • Once, the moisture releases, add in some water, few spoons at a time and start mixing in the batter.
  • The batter shouldn’t be too runny. All the dry ingredients should be mixed well and ensure that no lumps are remaining.
  • Heat up some oil in a deep pan suitable for frying.
  • Check if oil is hot by dropping in a little bit of batter. If the batter fries and rises to the top instantly, the oil is ready for frying. If the batter sinks down towards the bottom, let the oil heat up a bit.
  • Fry one small bhajiya first and skim it. Taste this bhajiya for any salt or spice adjustment needed in the batter.
  • You may opt for adding finely chopped green chillies to increase the spice level.
  • Next, start dropping bhajiyas in the hot oil, one by one. You can do so with hands or with a spoon.
  • Do not overcrowd the pan with bhajiyas because the temperature of the oil will keep decreasing as you fry.
  • Drain the bhajiyas from the oil and empty on to a plate lined with paper towel to soak the excess oil.
  • With every new batch of bhajiyas, check if the oil is hot enough.
  • Sprinkle some chat masala on top while serving.
  • Serve will Tomato Sauce, spicy green chutney or tangly tamarind chutney.

 

PALAK KE PAKODE

This pakoda has a small variation from the regular palak pakoda or spinach fritters. The addition of a ginger-chilli-coriander paste in the batter creates a refreshing feeling and a delicious aftertaste as you relish the pakodas.

Serves : 4 | Preparation time : 15 mins | Cooking time : 10 mins

Ingredients

  • Spinach (पालक) : Finely Chopped 2 cups
  • Gram Flour (बेसन) : 1 1/2 cups
  • Red Chilli Powder (लाल मिर्च पाउडर) : 2 to 3 tsp as per taste
  • Turmeric Powder (हल्दी) : 1 tsp
  • Ajwain (Carom Seeds) (अजवाइन) : 1/2 tbsp
  • Asafoetida (हींग) : 1/4 tsp
  • Salt (नमक) : As per taste
  • Green Chillies (हरी मिर्च) : 3
  • Coriander (हरा धनिया) : 1/2 cup
  • Ginger (अदरक) : 1 inch
  • Kasuri Methi (कसूरी मेथी) : 1 tbsp
  • Curry Leaves (कड़ी पत्ता) : 8-10 leaves, fried/roasted and crushed
  • Oil (तेल) : For frying

Utensils required

  • Knife
  • chopping board
  • Blender
  • Spoon
  • Deep Pan for frying
  • Skimmer  / Slotted Spoon
  • Paper Towels

Method

  • In a blender, mix some roughly chopped ginger, roughly chopped green chillies and fresh coriander. Blend them to make a paste. You can blend it fine or coarse depending on the texture you like your pakodas to be.
  • Wash spinach leaves thoroughly and chop them finely. You may also chose to slice them in juliennes.
  • Fry or roast some curry leaves and crush them.
  • In a large bowl, add gram flour, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, carom seeds, asafoetida, kasuri methi, spinach, crushed curry leaves and salt. Carom seeds and asafoetida help fight any unsettling feeling in the stomach that you may get after eating the bhajiyas and helps diegst them better. Curry leaves and kasuri methi compliment the flavour and texture of spinach.
  • Mix these well and add in water bit by bit.
  • Form a lump free batter that is just wet enough to mix all the ingredients. The batter shouldn’t be too runny.
  • Heat up some oil in a deep pan suitable for frying.
  • Check if oil is hot by dropping in a little bit of batter. If the batter fries and rises to the top instantly, the oil is ready for frying. If the batter sinks down towards the bottom, let the oil heat up a bit.
  • Fry one small pakoda first and skim it. Taste this pakoda for any salt or spice adjustment needed in the batter.
  • Next, start dropping the pakodas in hot oil, one by one. You can do so with hands or with a spoon.
  • Do not overcrowd the pan with pakodas because the temperature of the oil will keep decreasing as you fry.
  • Drain the pakodas from the oil and empty on to a plate lined with paper towel to soak excess oil.
  • With every new batch of bhajiyas, check if the oil is hot enough.
  • Serve hot, with a sweet chutney to enjoy an amazing blend of spicy and sweet flavours.

 

Note :

  • Wash all the leafy ingredients thoroughly.
  • If you are dropping the batter in oil with you hands, be careful that your hands are not to high above the pan, else the oil may spill out of the pan and cause burns.
  • Alternatively you can drop the batter with spoon.
  • To make the bhajiyas crispier, you may add 1 tbsp of hot oil in the batter before frying.
  • You can also add few teaspoons of rice flour to the batter to make it more crunchy. This adds an almost tempura like effect.
  • Baking soda, in liquid or powder form can be added in the batter to help the fluff up while frying.
  • Alternatively, the batter, once ready can be left aside for 15-20 mins so that the batter rises naturally.
  • Fry the bhajiyas in an oil with higher smoking point. Extra Virgin Olive oil is not advisable.

 

*Best Served with a hot cup of tea :)

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