A popular Indian side dish, onion bhajis consist of chopped onion fried in gram batter. They are really a kind of pakora, but they are generally listed separately on the menus of Indian restaurants and so on so they deserve a node of their own.

To make the batter, mix up gram flour with a little salt, some sodium bicarbonate and Indian spices: I usually use cumin, ground and whole, ground coriander seeds, turmeric, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cinnamon and mustard seeds. You can vary the mix according to taste, or you could just use some ready-mixed garam masala or curry powder. You may also like to add some chopped parsley, coriander and/or fenugreek leaves.

Once these are all mixed together, add water slowly to make a thick batter, then add diced onions. Mix them up so they're well covered. Heat up a good bit of oil in a wok, deep frying pan or deep-fryer; bhajis are best deep-fried but it's quite possible to cook them in less than half an inch of oil. The oil should be pretty hot, but not smoking. Dollop tablespoons full of the mixture into the oil and fry for about three to four minutes, until they are a rich golden brown. Drain and serve.

Onion bhajis are the perfect snack to complement to any Indian meal. However, in the past bhajis are said to have been too fatty for people who are on calorie controlled diets. I have managed to find a recipe that suits the diet needs of many people who like to eat Indian food but find it way too fatty.


To make the onion bhaji you will need a number of different ingredients. The ingredients you will need are as follows:

  • One large onion, diced into small, square pieces.

  • 195 grams of cooked new potatoes (around ten small new potatoes).

  • 195 grams of cooked chickpeas (around half a large tin).

  • A teaspoon of curry powder.

  • One large egg.


    1. Dice the onion into small, square pieces and place in a frying pan with a little oil, leaving the pan to heat up and soften the onions slightly. Leave the onion in the frying pan for only a short period of time until they are soft – do not let them start to brown!

    2. Drain the new potatoes and the chickpeas and place them into a bowl and then mash them rigorously until they form a smooth paste.

    3. Add the onion to the paste mixture, along with the curry powder and stir well. Now add the egg and shape the bhajis into a rounded shape. You should be able to make at least eight, depending on how large you make them.

    4. Place the bhajis into the oven at a low light and cook them for around twenty minutes or until they are golden brown.

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