How many times do you get that craving for maru bhajias? I’m also pretty sure you have a favourite spot where you get your fix. I haven’t met anyone who doesn’t. Well, I have news for you, you’re favourite spot for these yummy bites is about to be home!
If you search the internet you will find a countless number of recipes, some with a countless number of ingredients — yes, I’ve tried. It can be so overwhelming. So when I was over at my neighbour’s house for tea about three weeks ago and had a taste of these babies I just had to ask how he made them. Yes, you read right, he. He learned the recipe from his mother and it’s so simple. He gave it with such detail description. He talked about the thickness of the batter and how to balance the ingredients (without actually giving any quantities).
Have you watched Today’s Special? Not a blockbuster, just a foodie movie with heartwarming kitchen scenes! He he he! Seriously though, if you have, do you recall the scene where Akbar the cab driver/chef was telling Samir how to mix his spices? Samir was busy fussing about quantities and Akbar was telling him to just do what he feels? It was something like that. I went back later to ask what the spice was that he had mentioned and he pulled out his spice tray to show me, nothing was labeled! Just little containers with spoons in them, just like in that movie! Ok enough about that, let’s get to the recipe, here is what you will need:
Fresh methi/fenugreek leaves
Fresh dhania/Coriander leaves
Potatoes, peeled and sliced
1 cup gram flour
2 cups water
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon ajwain/carom seeds
Ok, quick side note: I was not given quantities, I was told what not to put too much of and how the thickness batter should feel so the quantities I’ve used are just what I felt, from what I was told. Worked out very well, but feel free to adjust to your taste as you make and discover.
This is a good point to taste the batter to test for salt, just a little bit. Add if needed. Or you can also wait to taste from the first batch then add salt to the batter in needed for the rest.
Don’t go too thin on the potato slices, you’ll make crisps — unless that’s what you want (^_^).
Pre-heat the oil, but don’t let it smoke, that’s too hot. The batter will burn before the potato cooks. Put in one potato slice to test, if it sinks to the bottom and stays there then the oil is not ho enough yet. If it comes back up sizzling then the oil is ready. Fry till they start to get a hint of golden.
I would also suggest using wide pot with about an inch of oil. Unlike fries, you can’t really stack these on top on each other they’ll just stick together. Better to do one layer at a time, and a wide pot/pan will have more space so you’ll finish faster.
As is with many dishes you can customise this to your palette. If you like a some heat in your maru bhajias feel free to chop in fresh chillies or add chilli flakes to the batter according to your taste. Try making these yummies this weekend and let me know how you like them!