Chickpea flour gives these onion bhaji a crisp, earthy edge. They're great served as a snack, or an entree, with a cooling yoghurt dipping sauce.
- vegetable oil, for deep frying
- 180 g (1½ cups) chickpea flour
- 225 g (1½ cups) plain flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- ½ tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
- pinch salt
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 large red onions
- ¼ cup mint leaves
- 200 g (¾ cup) Greek yoghurt
- ½ tsp ground coriander
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- coriander leaves
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. For the yoghurt dressing, ground the mint leaves in a mortar and pestle until bruised. Stir in the yoghurt, coriander, salt and pepper, then refrigerate until ready to serve.
2. Heat the oil for deep-frying in a wok or deep-fryer to 170˚C -180˚C.
3. Meanwhile, place the flours, baking powder, spices, garlic and 500 ml (2 cups) of water in a large bowl and mix until a smooth batter forms. Finely chop one of the onions and thinly slice the other. Add to the batter and stir until well combined.
4. Test the oil by dipping a wooden chopstick into the oil- it should bubble around it if it's hot enough. Cooking in small batches, gently drop a large spoonful of the bhaji mix into the oil. Cook, turning occasionally for 5 minutes or until golden and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Serve hot with the yoghurt dressing on the side for dipping.
Diana Chan and guests explore the flavours of Asia from her Melbourne home in the second series of Asia Unplated.