Friday, September 25, 2009

BHARELA MARCHA NA BHAJIYA ભરેલા મરચા ના ભજીયા


BHARELA MARCHA NA BHAJIYA ભરેલા મરચા ના ભજીયા
The flavor that excites me most (and to the most of the foodies and public at large) is Heavenly smell of frying Chili peppers.The wafting aroma tingles the tongue and excites a part of brain that widens the eyes and sends secretion message to the tongue ,which starts salivating. The feeling is almost the same in any person who loves food and lives in any corner of this earth.

When I was searching for the reasons that made chili peppers as the most sought after spice in the whole world, I looked at different reasons like smell, color,taste , cost and shelf life etc.Surprisingly chili peppers came out toppers in spite of their fiery burning taste.Red colour and nose burning, cough inducing fumes.What,then makes Chilies, the most sought after spice?Honestly speaking , I myself could not pinpoint any plausible single reason.But the fact remains that there is no corner of this world where people do not like, love and swear by their chilies.

I have talked to hundreds of people about the reason they like their food most, invariablythey pin pointed to the primary taste maker and taste enhancer as Fiery hot or mildly hot chili peppers.Among the methods of chili pepper consumption, two stood out as most popular ways of consumption.Fried and or Roasted and the second one was Powdered.

This, then calls for posting a very popular recipe from India , which falls in "Fried"catagory.In India, Chili fritters are known as Mirchi Ki Bhajji" or Marcha Na Bhajiya.This nomanclature varies from state to state. But the end product , basically remains the same.I am posting a very fine recipe of Marcha Na Bhajiya as eaten in Karnataka which is one of the southern states in India,

When we think of a fiery evening snack especially on a cold evening,, the first thing that comes to my mind is the "Mirchi Bajji" lovingingly called as "Menasinakai Bajji" in Karnataka.Especially in Bangalore, the vendors on hand-carts made delicious bajjis and it was my favourite indulging snack..My friend got me a bag full of the portugese peppers which are fiery hot fresh from her garden..She warned me about the degree of heat in these chillies..So I decided to make these stuffed bajjis to satisfy my snack craving

Rainy season and chili fritters (bajji)has a close realationship. I have had some of the most wonderful Bajjis in Jamnagar in Gujarat, Shamla ji in Rajasthan and Bangalore.Eventhough Bajjis are available throughout the year , there is no better time to enjoy them as Rainy season.

I prepared stuffed Bajjis last week. I used Bajji chili peppers for the purpose.Generally you might have heard of only chili bajjis but this might be the first time you would be seeing stuffed chili bajjis.

Select Proper type of Chili peppers as under.
chili peppers for stuffing






Green chili peppers of choice......5 TO 6 Nos.
Kadalai parappu/Channa dal...1/4 cup
Onion paste made from 1/2 onion(medium size)
Dhania Jeera powder (freshly made) 1.5 tsp
Chili powder......1/4 to 1/2 tsp as per need or hot green chillies 2 to 3 nos cut very fine/rough paste
Kothumalli cut very fine ....2 tsp.
Asafoetida (LG) 1/4 Tsp (milder variety)
Amchur/lemon juice just a little (1/4 tsp)
Salt to taste
Oil for frying....250 ml or more as per need


3/4 Cup of Besan/Kadalai maavu
1/4 cup Rice flour
Turmeric powder...1/2 tsp
1/4 tsp chili powder
1 tsp Coarsly powdered coriander seeds
1/4 tsp Asafoetida


Soak channa dal for three hours. Dry it thoroughly and then powder it in mixi.Keep it in a wide mouth vessel. Add onion after that to the bowl and make a pate. Add it to channa dal powder. Add Dhania-Jeera powder, chili powder , asafoetida, salt , Kothumalli and knead a thick dough. DO NOT ADD ANY WATER IN STUFFING DOUGH. Onion paste is enough as binder.

Slice each Chili pepper and remove seeds . Stuff each sliced chili pepper with stuffing and keep it ready for frying.

Now prepare the batter for dipping. Mix Besan/Kadalai maavu and Rice flour in a bowl . Add Turmeric, chili powder , salt and Asafoetida to that and mix thoroughly. Ad little water to make it into slightly thicker batter than Idly batter.

Place a kadai on stove with enough oil for frying. When oil is sufficiently hot, test it by dropping a drop of batter.
Dip each stuffed chili pepper in thick batter carefully, roll it over for uniform coating and slowly place it in hot oil and fry on medium heat thoroughly.

Serve hot with tomato sauce or chutney of choice or just tea/coffee.

Enjoy !!

Hemant Trivedi

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