The secret to a light, crunchy, golden bhaji lies in the batter – and paying attention while you fry!
- 250 g chickpea (besan / gram) flour
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- ½ tsp cumin powder
- 2 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
- 1 tsp pomegranate seed powder
- 1 tsp salt, or to taste
- 2 medium onions, halved and thinly sliced
- 2 medium potatoes, thinly sliced
- 2 handfuls baby spinach, roughly chopped
- 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 L vegetable oil, approximately, for frying
Green chilli and mint dip
- 2 long green chillies, chopped
- small handful mint leaves
- small handful coriander leaves
- ½ small clove garlic, grated
- 120 ml natural yoghurt
- ¼ tsp salt
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
1. Sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl, then add the ground coriander, chilli powder, cumin, dried fenugreek leaves, and pomegranate seed powder. Add 225ml water and mix with a wooden spoon to make a batter. The consistency should be similar to cake batter. Add a pinch of salt to taste.
2. Add the onion, potato and spinach to the batter and mix well, ensuring all are covered, Add a squeeze of lemon juice and leave for 20 minutes.
3. Meanwhile make the green chilli dip by putting all the ingredients into a small food processor. Blend until smooth, transfer to a serving dish and keep in the fridge until needed.
4. Heat the oil in a wok or deep fry pan to 180°C. Drop a level tablespoon of batter into the oil and fry. You can probably cook 5-6 at a time, depending on size of the pan.
5. Fry for about 3-5 minutes, turning a few times, until all sides are golden brown. Continue until all mixture is used. Serve with dip.