Bhajias are deep fried Indian chickpea flour fritters that are a very popular snack and one of the most popular street vendor offerings in India.
What are bhajias?
Bhajias are veggies that are coated in a lightly spiced chickpea flour batter and then deep-fried until golden and crispy. They are then had with a splash of mint chutney, ketchup or hot sauce. These are positively delicious and one can hardly ever stop at eating just one.
Though the most popular bhajias are potato bhajias when my Mom made them she made a variety of veggie bhajias using eggplant, bell peppers, broccoli, zucchini and onions. Everyone had their favorite bhajia but potato, pepper and onion bhajias always seemed to be the most popular.
No matter what your veggie bhajia preference, bhajias are delicious snack time treats that everyone will enjoy!
Bhajias taste best when made for a crowd!
The only downside to making these bhajias is that it’s hard to make a small batch. This recipe makes a large quantity so it’s more practical to make them when you have another family or two over. When I made bhajias recently I had my cousins over for a Father’s Day dinner with two of my cousins and their families.
Bhajias the perfect snack time treat
When bhajias are served as an appetizer you pretty much don’t need anything else. Just tea, coffee or good wine or mocktail or how about the traditional way of serving bhajias? With chai! No matter the accompanying drink these bhajias set the stage for a great evening ahead. At your next afternoon gathering give making bhajias a try!
For my veggie bhajias I used 1 zucchini, 1 onion, 1 potato, 1 eggplant and 1 bell pepper, despite the modest number of vegetables I still ended up with a generous amount of bhajias, enough for all eleven of us to enjoy! Here is a recipe for the most delicious veggie bhajias you will ever have!
makes enough for 10-12 folks
- 1 medium eggplant cut into slices
- 1 large potato cut into thin slices
- 1 zucchini cut into slices
- 1 large onion cut into rings
- 1 large bell pepper cut into long strips
- Oil for deep frying
- For the bhajia batter:
- 3 cups chickpea flour
- 3 cups water
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 2 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- Cook’s Notes: If you want to cut the recipe in half – go ahead! The spices are 1 tsp coriander powder, 1 tsp cumin powder, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp salt. 1 1/2 cups chickpea flour, 1 cup water. The batter should be like a thick pancake batter. When you dip the veggies it should kinda stick to the veggies. Happy bhajia making!
- Get the oil ready for deep frying. *Please be careful when frying!
- Sift the chickpea flour in a mixing bowl so that any lumps are gone.
- Next add all the spices, salt and baking soda and mix into the flour.
- Add water to the flour and make a thin pancake like batter.
- Get ready to make the bhajias. Take a slice of vegetable and dip it in the batter to completely coat the veggie.
- Gently drop them into the oil. You may add as many veggies as your frying pot will hold. Let the bhajia fry on one side for about 2 minutes then turn them over to cook the other side.
- The bhajias should be golden brown in color when they are done. The batter should be cooked through and the veggie should be soft and tender.
- Take the bhajias out of the oil and place them on a paper towel to drain any excess oil.
- Place the bhajias on a platter and serve with chutney or hot sauce of your choice.
“The sound of a hawker selling bhajia rises from the street
—onion and pepper and brinjal and potato.
Alsana nodded and waited for two awkward-shaped bhajis to go down the gullet.”
— Manil Suri, The Death of Vishnu, 2008 & Zadie Smith, White Teeth, 2000.
From Merriam Webster Ditionary.com