Onion Bhajis with Raita

PREP TIME: 15mins


Proper Indian bhajis has been on “my-to-make-list” for a really long time and I finally got around to making a batch of these crispy and delicious onion bhajis.

I am not sure why I waited so long as they are really quick and easy to make.

They are deliciously crunchy and fragrantly spiced and goes perfectly with my raita, an Indian spiced yogurt dip.

I love the addition of black onion seeds, also called nigella seeds, which gives the bhajis a wonderful layer of flavour and I used my own blend of mild curry powder.

I am going to try to make a batch of these bhajis whenever I make a curry, which is often!

What you'll need:

Deep heavy-based saucepan for frying and a plate covered with kitchen paper to drain the bhajis.


  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 4 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 120g chickpea (gram) flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon mild curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons black onion seeds
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • a few coriander leaves to garnish (opt)
  • sunflower oil for deep frying



  1. Put the cumin, coriander and peppercorns in a small pan and set over a low heat. Toast for 2 minutes until fragrant, then crush in a pestle and mortar.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the sliced onions, garlic, chickpea flour, curry powder, crushed spices, turmeric, onion seeds and salt. Add 5 tablespoons cold water and mix well with your hands or a wooden spoon. If the mixture is not holding together, add 2 more tablespoons of water. The mixture needs to ‘stick’ together when pressed into a fritter shaped.
  3. Pour the sunflower oil into a deep saucepan to a depth of about 10cm, set over a medium-high heat. The temperature of the oil is important, it should be hot enough to allow the bhajis to cook through without the outside burning. To test the temperature of the oil, drop a piece of onion batter into the oil, it should fizz and bubble.
  4. When the oil is ready, drop loose tablespoons of the mixture carefully into the oil. Fry, turning the bhajis for about 2 minutes on each side until golden brown. Lift the fritters into the lined plate to drain. Repeat with until all the batter is used.
  5. To serve, arrange the bhajis on a large warmed plate and scatter with salt and the coriander. Serve the the raita dip on the side.
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