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Onion Bajji (Venkaya Bajji)

July 14, 2014

ONION & RAW BANANA BAJJI (VENKAYA BAJJI, VAAZHAIKKAI BAJJI) (NOTE THIS IS NOT THE NORTH INDIAN ‘BAJI’ OR CURRY – THIS IS LIKE CRISPY PAKORA)

Ingredients:

Any vegetable can be used in Bajji – even green chili, but mostly its Onion Bajji that wins hands down. Raw Banana (Vaazhaikkai bajji) comes a close second followed by Aloo or Potato Bajji.

for today – i have used onion middle size 2 and a raw banana.

Besan – Gram Flour – Kadalai maavu in tamil – 3 tbsp

Rice flour – Arisi maavu in tamil – 3 tbsp

Red chili powder – 2 tsp

(alternately i use Madras Sambhar/Curry powder which is a mix of red chili & dhania (coriander seeds) powder in the ratio 1:1

Salt

Water

Cooking soda – 1/2 tsp

Oil for deep-frying

Saunf (fennel seeds) powder – 1/2 tsp (optional)

My little extra – i use a tsp of dry garlic powder in the bajji mix always but traditional recipe never includes garlic in any form. use of garlic powder gives a special aroma to the bajji.

Asafoetida/Hing powder in hindi/Perungaayam in tamil – a pinch (optional)

(the hing powder/garlic powder is to off-set the gastric effects of deepfrying the bajjis in oil)

Method:

1. Mix the besan (gram flour), rice flour, the red chili powder, salt, hing/asafoetida powder (optional), garlic powder (optional) in a bowl and add water slowly to it stirring all the time.  Make sure there are no lumps in this Bajji paste. Add finally the cooking soda and mix evenly. I have limited the use of cooking soda to 1/2 tsp but the more you use it, the more fluffy will the bajjis be. For saving our stomach, better to limit it to 1/2 a tsp. Goes without saying our restaurants & fast food chains use this cooking soda liberally to enhance taste & body, to get the perfect fluffy yet crispy bajji.

2. Peel the onion/raw banana (or potato) and slice. Raw banana can be cut into 2 and sliced vertical while the onion/potato can be sliced cylindrical like concentric circles (ref pic).

why not to cube the vegetables: we are not pre-cooking the bajji vegetables therefore better to slice them so that they won’t remain raw in deep-frying. slice as thin as possible.

3. Heat oil in a pan to smouldering point and maintain it at that level.

4. Take the cut vegetables one by one, dip in the bajji flour mix and toss gently in the heated oil and deep fry to golden brown.

5. Turn sides and make sure both the sides are done. This way the vegeable inbetween also gets cooked.

6. Take out and drain on tissue paper to remove excess oil.

7. Onion/Raw banana Bajji is ready for serving. This serves easily about 4-5 people. This is a dish similar to pakora.

8. Serve crispy and hot, hot with tomato ketchup or coconut chutney, the traditional way. Onion Bajjis are slightly fluffy and taste yum. Our family favourite is Onion Bajji over anything else.

9. The left-over besan/bajji mix can be refrigerated for future use – within 1-2 days. (i use the left-over besan if any to make onion pakoras).

10. Yummy evening snack – made this on a rainy day for tea-time.

11.Mostly all Indian homes stock besan (gram flour), rice flour, red chili powder etc. So Onion/Raw banana/Potato Bajji can be turned out in a jiffy if we have unexpected guests.

FOR NON-VEGETARIANS: TRY THIS OUT WITH THIN FISH STRIPS/BONELESS CHICKEN/PRAWN OR EVEN BOILED, SLICED EGGS FOR EVENING SNACKS. ALSO SERVES AS A GOOD STARTER. CITY BEACHES ARE FAMOUS FOR CHILI BAJJI & EGG & FISH BAJJI.

 

 

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From → Vegetarian

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