A cup of tea needs something deep fried to go with it.
You see, Teley Bhaja, or “deep fried” is a genre on its own. Staying true to my Indian roots, I can deep fry almost anything. It could be a variant of any of the flours with herbs and spices, or it could be any vegetable, edible flower or leaf and a lot of other things.
We had a gorgeous weekend here. With the snow gone, and the sun rays actually feeling warm, the nature is changing fast.
There were so many firsts. My first flower of the season. Aren’t the crocuses beautiful? The first outdoor photo shoot of this season. We had tea on the deck, which was a first too after five months!
I decided to make this snack to go with this special day. Fafda is a chick pea flour based appetizer. With a few chosen spices, it takes no time to whip up a batch. Being gluten free is a bonus, in case you have a friend who is on special diet.
Oh one more first. I gave a try in baking half the dough. No more guilt feeling from deep fried foods.
I personally still prefer the deep fried ones. Old habits die hard, they say. I’m glad that I can offer the baked recipe too. Do you have any preference with your tea? Or coffee?
Recipe: Made 28 pieces.
Chick pea flour ( Besan ) 2 cups
Canola oil 5 Tbsps and more for frying
Carom seeds ( Ajwain ) 1 Tbsps crushed by hand
Salt To taste
Papad Khar ( Sodium bicarbonate ) 2 tsp
Water 1/2 – 2/3 rd cup
Sift the Besan. Add the Ajwain or Carom seeds and 5 Tbsps of Canola oil.
Dissolve the salt and Papad khar in the water.
Mix this water to the above dry ingredients and knead to form a tight dough, about 6-7 minutes. Cut small balls from the dough.
Put one ball on a cutting board. Press with finger to elongate it. Now put the palm of your hand on it and keep pressing at the same time moving the hand forward, till the ball gets rolled into a flat about 4- 41/2 inches long. The heel of the hand actually does the job of the rolling pin.
Now take a palette knife slide it under the flat, starting from top down, in one continuos quick stroke. arrange these on a kitchen towel.
Heat Canola oil about an inch deep in a frying pan. The oil is ready when a tiny piece of dough thrown in it, floats up right away.
Carefully drop the flats in hot oil in batches. Press them gently with the back of the ladle. They are ready as soon as they start to change colour, about a minute.
Collect them on a paper towel.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Line the flats on a foil lined baking tray. Bake them for 8-10 mts.
Serve them with your choice of dip, hummus or ketchup.
I like mine with a cup of piping hot tea.
This is traditionally served with deep fried green chillies. Frying lessens the heat, the chillies can be deseeded too.
Papad Khar is available online.
The upright ones are deep fried as opposed to the horizontal ones which are baked.
Refer to the picture collage if you feel lost.