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Bell Pepper Bullets

19 Apr

capsicum_chanadal
Senagapappu Capsicum Pakodi.

Chana dal is soaked and ground into thick coarse paste along with some spices. Bell pepper or capsicum is chopped into big chunks and stuffed inside the ground chana dal mixture. They are then deep fried or shallow fried until light golden brown in color. Serve fried bell pepper cubes with pickle rice or with tea.
Makes: around 3 Servings of Bell Pepper Bullets.

Ingredients:

Green Bell Pepper 1
Chana Dal 1 Cup
Ginger 1 inch Piece
Green Chiles 3 – 5
Salt to taste
Oil 1 tbsp

Method of preparation:

Soak chana dal in fresh water for 4 to 6 hours.
Wash, remove stem, discard seeds and chop bell pepper into big chunks.
Remove stems, wash and roughly chop green chiles.
Peel and roughly chop the ginger.
Grind ginger and green chiles into coarse paste.

Grind the soaked chana dal into somewhat coarse mixture by adding the least amount of water.
Mix together ground chana dal, ginger green chile paste and salt.
Take around a tbsp of the ground chana dal mixture into one hand and wrap it around the bell pepper chunk.
Repeat the same with remaining bell pepper chunks.

Heat a pan on medium flame, pour oil.
Slowly place all the prepared bell pepper cubes on the hot pan.
Make sure to fry the bell pepper in low – medium flame in order to let the bell pepper cook properly.
Let one side of the bell pepper cube change to golden brown in color before turning on other side.
Once all the bell pepper cubes are light golden brown in color, remove onto absorbent paper.
Serve bell pepper bullets as a tea time snack.
Notes: You can also deep fry the bell pepper cubes if you wish.

Suggestions: If the chana dal mixture is not thick which happens when you add more water while grinding, it doesn’t adhere to the bell pepper properly. In such case, add a tbsp of rice flour to the mixture to tighten it up.
Variations: Also add few pinches of garam masala, chopped cilantro etc to the chana dal mixture.
Other Names: Senagapappu Capsicum Pakodi, Fried Bell Pepper Cubes, Bell Pepper Bullets.

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Cut Mirchi Bhaji

23 Nov

cut_mirchi_bajji
Cut Mirchi Bajji.

Mirchi Bhaji is the famous chilli fritters made by deep frying chillies dipped in besan batter. Here, long fat thick skinned mild chillies (banana peppers, long green peppers, etc) are used to make the fritters. The fritters are then cut into bite sized pieces and double fried till golden brown. They are then stuffed with mint cilantro chutney and topped with chopped onion and spices.
Makes: around 6 Cut Mirchi Bajji for 1 Long Green Pepper.

Ingredients:

Long green peppers 1 – 2
Besan 3/4 Cup
Mint Coriander Chutney as required
Onion 1 Small
Roasted Peanuts 15 – 20
Red Chile Powder 1/2 tsp
Cilantro few sprigs
Salt to taste
Lemon Juice 1 tbsp
Soda bi Carb a big pinch
Oil for deep frying

Method of preparation:

Wash thoroughly green chiles / green peppers.
Peel and finely chop the onion.
Clean, remove hard stems and finely chop cilantro.

Heat oil in wok on medium high heat for deep frying, add few pinches of salt into it.

In a mixing bowl, add besan, salt and soda-bi-carb.
Add sufficient water to the besan mixture to make thick and smooth batter without any lumps.
You can test it by coating the back of the spoon with besan batter which doesn’t drip easily.

Dip the whole green chile in besan batter making sure the batter is coated on all the sides of the chilli.
Remove the dipped chilli from the mixing bowl and slowly drop into hot oil.
Repeat the same with other green chile (if using).

Fry on all sides until just cooked but not browned and remove the chilli fritters on to a kitchen napkin.
If the oil is smoking hot, reduce the heat a bit to avoid burning the green chiles.
Leave the mirchi bhaji until they are warm enough to handle.
Cut each chilli fritter into approximately 1 inch long cylinders.
Deep fry the cut chilli fritters again in medium hot oil for a minute or until they turn golden brown and crisp.
Remove the deep fried cut mirchi bhaji onto a kitchen napkin to absorb all the excess oil.

In a small bowl, mix thoroughly chopped onion, red chile powder, cilantro, salt.
At first, stuff each fried cut chilli fritter with two or more roasted peanuts.
Then stuff with quarter tsp of the green chutney and layer with a half a tsp of the prepared chopped onion.
Drizzle few drops of lemon juice on top of each stuffed cut mirchi bhaji.
Garnish the cut mirchi bhaji with finely chopped cilantro.
Serve cut mirchi bhaji as a snack with few wedges of lemon on the plate.
Notes: Make sure to choose fat and mild chillies for best results.

Suggestions: If the besan batter is too thick, the green chile doesn’t cook properly. If the besan batter is too thin, it doesn’t coat the green chile well. So make sure the besan batter is of right consistency.
Variations:Sprinkle a pinch of chaat masala or red chile powder and salt mixture on top of mirchi fritter for extra spice.
Other Names: Mirchi Bajji, Mirchi Bhaji, Stuffed Cut Mirchi Bhaji, Stuffed Chilli Fritters.

Stuffed Plantain Fritters

29 Aug

plantain_bajji_stuffed
Aratikaya Bajji Masala.

Plantain fritters are made by dipping the sliced plantain in gram flour batter and deep frying them till golden color. Then the plantain fritters are stuffed with finely chopped onion and peanuts. Various spices are also mixed with the stuffing for heat. Finally lemon is squeezed to make the fritters little tangy.
Makes: 10 – 14 Stuffed Plantain Fritters.

Ingredients:

Plantain 1 Small
Besan 1 – 1 1/4 Cup
Onion 1
Roasted Peanuts 20 – 28
Red Chile Powder 1 tsp
Cilantro few sprigs
Salt to taste
Lemon 1
Soda bi Carb a big pinch
Oil for deep frying

Method of preparation:

Remove ends, remove thick outer skin and chop plantain into thin circles that hold their shape.
Make sure the circles are not too thin and soak them in cold water until required.
Peel and finely chop the onion.
Clean, remove hard stems and finely chop cilantro.
Halve the lemon and squeeze out the juice if you wish.

Heat oil in wok on medium high heat for deep frying, add few pinches of salt.

In a mixing bowl, add besan, salt and soda-bi-carb.
Add sufficient water little by little to make thick flowy batter almost having honey like consistency.

Dip each plantain circle in besan batter making sure the batter is coated on both the sides of the plantain.
Remove the dipped plantain circle from the mixing bowl and slowly drop into hot oil.
Plantain circle should sizzle once it hits hot oil else oil has not reached required temperature.
Repeat the same with other plantain circles until the surface of oil is full.

Fry on both sides until golden brown and remove the plantain fritters on to kitchen napkin.
If the oil is smoking hot, reduce the heat little bit and bring it back on after a while.
Once all the plantain circles are made into fritters, leave them until they are warm enough to handle.
Slit each of the fritter in the middle on one of the faces making sure not to cut them into half.

In a mixing bowl, mix thoroughly chopped onion, red chile powder, cilantro, salt.
At first, stuff each slitted plantain fritter with two or more roasted peanuts.
Then stuff the plantain fritters with spoonful of the prepared chopped onion mixture.
Squeeze few drops of lemon juice on top of each stuffed plantain fritter.
Sprinkle a pinch of red chile powder and little salt on top of plantain fritter for extra spice.
Serve stuffed plantain fritters as a snack with few wedges of lemon on the plate.
Notes:Make sure plantain fritters are fried properly before removing from heat.

Suggestions: If the fritters come out too thin and little hard, add another pinch of soda bi carb to the batter and try again.
Variations: Sprinkle chaat masala on top of the stuffed plantain fritters. You can also add red chile powder to the besan batter for extra spice.
Other Names: Stuffed Raw Banana Fritters, Barwan Kaccha Kela Bhajiya, Plantain Bhajia.

Vermicelli Bonda

24 Jun

semyaupma_bonda
Semya Bondalu

Bonda is a deep fried snack common in South India. Here is a basic version of vermicelli bonda where vermicelli acts as a stuffing. Vermicelli is boiled till soft and made into small balls. These balls are later dipped in a batter made of besan and spices. The dipped vermicelli balls are immediately dropped into hot oil to be deep fried.
Makes: around 6 Vermicelli Bonda

Ingredients:

Vermicelli 1 Cup
Besan 3/4 Cup
Red Chilli Powder 1/2 tsp
Carom Seeds / Ajwain a big pinch
Soda bi carb a pinch
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

Method of preparation:

Bring to boil few cups of water in a pot, add vermicelli and salt.
Boil till vermicelli is just cooked without being mushy and soft.
Strain the vermicelli and let it cool a bit.
Apply little bit of ghee or oil to the hands and shape the vermicelli into small balls.

Heat oil in a deep frying pan on medium high heat.
Mix together besan, red chile powder, ajwain, soda bi carb and salt into thick batter with sufficient water.
Dip each vermicelli ball into the thick besan batter and slowly drop into hot oil.
Deep fry the bonda on all sides till golden color and little crisp.
Remove the fried vermicelli bonda onto absorbent paper.
Repeat the same with any remaining vermicelli balls.
Serve hot vermicelli bonda with tomato or tamarind chutney.
Notes:Generally vermicelli bonda are made from leftover vermicelli upma.

Suggestions: If vermicelli is overcooked, add few drops of oil and spread it on kitchen towel and let it dry a bit before making into balls.
Variations: You can also spice up the vermicelli with chopped green chillies or red chilli flakes along with chopped onion, carrot and cilantro.
Other Names: Semya Bonda, Vermicelli Bhaji, Seviyan Bonda.