"Bhaji on the beach" is the memorably alliterative title of that wonderfully heartwarming 1993 movie about a group of Indian women who take a trip to Blackpool which becomes a great bonding experience for them. True bhaji make fantastic picnic food for the beach or anywhere else for that matter but during dark winter days why not try bhaji on the couch? They make a great snack for a movie evening at home say or when a group of friends just come round for a chat.
Although traditionally associated with onion many shredded vegetables can be used either alone or in a mix. Carrot, courgette, celeriac, sweet potato and fennel for example all make great bhajis or you can even go down the tempura route and use small florets of broccoli, cauliflower, french beans or baby sweet corn. We find a mix probably works best and should contain at least a little onion for flavour. No bhaji would be complete without a dip - sweet chilli is probably just about the best possible match! By the way the gram flour the recipe calls for is made from chick peas and is gluten free.
2 level cups of Gram (chick pea) flour
1 tsp cumin seeds or powder
1 tbsp of roughly chopped coriander
1 tsp salt
Half tsp chilli powder
Quater tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 medium white onions sliced
1 grated carrot (optional)
Pinch turmeric (for golden colour)
Mix ingredients in a bowl with a 150 ml of water to a thick batter and season generously. Set aside for five mins. Heat oil in a deep saucepan or deep fat fryer to about 190 C. Take a heaped tbsp of mixture at a time and drop into the hot fat and fry each for about 3 mins or until crisp and golden. Allow to dry on kitchen paper and serve.
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