Bologna to Bolognese: Adventures With Food

Food is necessary. Food is fun. Food is an adventure!

My name is Shannon and this is my adventure, my love affair with food.

I hope you'll come along for the ride.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Beautiful Bhaji

My husband and I LOVE Indian food and when we were in England a meal from the local curry shop was often accompanied by delicious Onion Bhaji, fresh from the deep fryer. Recently I found a great recipe for Baked Zucchini fritters and it seemed like a great starting place for a healthier version of the delicious Indian snack food I’ve been missing. A traditional Bhaji is thinly sliced onions combined with a chickpea flour batter and spices before being deep fried in hot oil. I don’t love frying things at home so this baked version is not only healthier but helps avoid the mess and hassle of frying.

Ingredients (12 Bhaji)

3 c. shredded zucchini, unpeeled
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp cardamom
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp mace
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp ground red pepper
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 egg, slightly beaten
3/4 c. bread crumbs
1 onion
2 tbsp garlic
1/2 c. feta (finely crumbled) or grated parmesan


Preheat oven 425 F
Shred the zucchini and onion with a food processor or box grater. Place shredded vegetable in a fine sieve or colander and press out excess water. In a bowl (not plastic), mix the shredded veg and remaining ingredients together. Prepare a baking sheet with cooking spray.
Each Bhaji should be about ¼ cup of this mixture. Place a scoop of mixture onto the baking tray and press gently into a round shape on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining mixture. Once all the fritters have been placed on the baking sheet, bake for 10 minutes. Spray Bhaji tops with spray butter or drizzle with oil, turn over with a spatula. Cook for additional 10 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown. Top with a drizzle of lemon juice.

These Bhajis have a very strong flavor and I like mine with a smidge of sour cream as well, though this is not a traditional Bhaji accoutrement. However, since Zucchini is not a traditional Bhaji ingredient I guess it’s all good!

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