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Cavolo nero bhajia with fresh tomato chutney
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Serves: 4-6 as a starter (makes 30 bhajia)
4 cloves garlic, peeled
30g fresh ginger, peeled
2 green chillies
200g pack cavolo nero, stalks discarded, leaves washed and finely shredded
1 tsp turmeric
200g gram flour, plus extra if needed
50g rice flour
½ tsp caster sugar, plus extra to season
4 tomatoes, coarsely grated and skins discarded (or finely chopped)
25g pack coriander, finely chopped
½ tsp ground cumin
Sunflower oil, for deep frying
1. Put the garlic, ginger and chillies in a food processor. Whizz until finely chopped, then tip into a large bowl with the cavolo nero.
2. Add the turmeric, gram flour, rice flour, sugar, 1 tsp salt and 75-100ml cold water to the bowl. Mix well to combine, then set aside for 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, mix the tomatoes with the coriander and cumin. Season with a pinch of salt and sugar.
4. Pour enough oil into a large saucepan to reach a depth of 5cm. Heat on medium for 30 seconds, or until a small piece of bread browns. Meanwhile, taste the bhajia mixture for seasoning, then shape and squeeze it into walnut-sized balls. The mixture should hold together easily – add a little more gram flour or water as needed. Fry the bhajia in batches, for 4-5 minutes, turning regularly, until golden and crisp. Serve with the tomato chutney.
Cook’s tip The chutney can be made ahead of time, covered and chilled for 1 day. The bhajia are best eaten just after frying, but if needed they will keep for 2 days, chilled in the fridge in an airtight container. Reheat in the oven until piping hot.
Typical values per serving: