Have you ever tried making crunchy bhajia?Besides fries, bhajia is also a popular fast food in many Kenyan restaurants. It can either be consumed alone or with fried chicken, as preferred by many. So, have you ever wanted to make them by yourself? Do you wonder how the mouth-watering taste in this food is achieved? Well, I got you. Here’s how to prepare crunchy Bhajia:
- 3 Large potatoes
- ½ cup gram flour
- 1 ginger(grated)
- 2 garlics(kitunguu saumu)
- ½ teaspoon of crushed hot pepper
- A bunch of coriander leaves(dhania)
- ½ cup water
- ½ teaspoon salt to taste
- Slice your potatoes into medium slices using a knife.
- Crush the ginger and garlic into a paste and add to the gram flour along with the salt and pepper. Mix together to ensure that all the ingredients are evenly distributed in the flour.
- Cut the coriander leaves(dhania) into small pieces and add into the batter.
- Add water in small amounts while continuously stirring until all the gram flour is well incorporated. Once it has the consistency you like,stop adding more water.(the mixture is called a batter)
- Heat oil on medium heat until it comes to temperature.
- Take the potato slices and dip them into the mixture (batter) one by one making sure they are well coated before adding them to the hot oil.
- Cook the bhajias for 2 minutes on each side or until it is golden brown and crispy on all sides.
- Serve while still hot.
You can make a sauce to accompany your bhajia(check this out on my next post)
JUST A WORD:Your batter should not be too thin or too thick; it should just be thick enough to ensure that it coats the potato slices without sliding off.Your oil for deep frying should not be too hot or too cold. The oil should be heated on moderate heat so that the batter coating on the potatoes can have enough time to crisp up without burning while the potatoes get sufficient time to cook completely.
*DID YOU KNOW* that Bhajias are a fantastic snack and are loved all over the world. They’re also a very popular fast food in Kenya.It is an alternative for fries to most people.Bhajias are also excellent appetizers.
Eat Healthy,Stay Wealthy Healthly
Most of the time we need something quick and simple to revive our energy. Smoothies would do best especially now that we are in a new year,you need to stay healthy and strong to face the 365 days ahead.Here is a simple homemade Pinacolaba Smoothie recipe;
- ½ pineapple
- One banana
- A cup of Milk
- ¼ Coconut
- 3 Ice cubes
- 1 tablespoon of Honey
- Peel the pineapple carefully. and cut it into smaller pieces
- Shred the coconut.
- Cut the banana into small pieces.
- Put all the ingredients in a blender and add the ice cubes.
- Add half cup of milk then blend for 3 minutes then add the other half and the honey. Continue blending till smooth.
- Serve in a long glass.(This is for presentation)
- You can garnish the smoothie for presentation purposes(not a must)
JUST A WORD:Smoothies improve digestion.Nobody wants to experience constipation or indigestion. Let your blender “chew” your food and ease the burden on your digestive system.
Smoothies are also quick and easy to make. Making your own smoothie doesn’t take as long as preparing most meals, giving more time for you to do others things.
Eat Heathy,Stay Healthy.
Fish is a very popular food especially in the western part of Kenya and any other place where there are fresh water bodies. Fish is one of the key elements of a healthy diet.It also has high nutritional value. Here is one of the easiest way to prepare a delicious fish;
- 1 whole fish
- 1 egg
- ½ cup of milk
- A plate of bread crumbs
- Lemon(Cut into wedges)
- Cut the fish into serving size portions.
- Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper.
- Beat the egg and mix with the milk in a mixing bowl.
- Dip the portions in the egg/milk mixture then roll them in the bread crumbs.
- Place the fish in a frying pan with cooking oil, hot but not smoking.
- Fry at a moderate heat until the fish is brown on one side. Turn carefully and brown the other side.
- The cooking time is approximately 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish.
- Place the fish on a flat surface for approximately 2 minutes to drain the excess oil on the fish or use an absorbent paper.
- Then place the fish on a serving plate and serve with lemon wedges.
- Garnish using some chopped parsley or dhania(not a must)
Just a thought:Fish protects your vision in old age.It also lowers the risk of heart attacks and strokes
Eat healthy, stay healthy.
Most of the people I have interacted with for a long time have a craving for Chapati yet they don’t know how to make them so they end up buying the “street cooked one”.I believe that it’s not only them but also so many others out there.Check out the easier Chapati cooking method I have below then give it a try.Be the “chapati chef” you have always wished to be.
Why Chapati?Chapatis are good for healthy skin and also for better digestion
- Rolling pin.
- Clean,damp cloth.(kitchen cloth)
- A large mixing bowl.
- A spoon
- Large frying pan or a chapati pan.
- 4 cups all-purpose flour.
- 1 cup of flour on a flat plate (this will be used when rolling out the chapatis).
- 1 cup of warm coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons of coconut oil for cooking(melted)
- 1/2 cup of oil (for cooking the chapatis).
- 1 tea spoon salt
- In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt.
- Add the warm melted coconut oil and warm coconut milk (grate coconut on milk to get easy coconut milk)gradually as you knead the mixture into a dough (knead for about 20 minutes) This will activate the gluten in the flour, resulting in soft chapatis. The dough should be soft and smooth, but not sticky. If you feel your dough is too stiff, add a tablespoon of warm water to the dough until you reach the right consistency.
- Form the dough into a ball then cover the bowl with a clean, damp cloth.
- Allow it to rest for 25-30 minutes. This will help your chapati to be soft.
- Divide the rested dough into equal sizes
- Lightly dust your clean work surface with some flour. Working with one ball of dough at a time, roll out the dough.
- Using a tablespoon,smear about a tablespoon of oil over the top surface of the chapati,Make sure you brush the oil all the way to the edges of the chapati
- Using your rolling pin, drape the oiled chapati over the rolling pin (ungreased side touching the rolling pin)
- Gently lift your chapati to shake off any excess flour
- Return your chapati to your work surface and then start folding it like you would fold a paper
- Use the palm of your hand to gently press down on the folded half. Repeat this same process with the other dough that is unfolded.
- Cover them with a damp cloth and allow them to rest for another 25-30 minutes.
- Heat your chapati cooking pan over medium heat.
- Make sure your hotpot is ready too . This is where you’ll put your chapatis as you cook them, to keep them warm and keep them from drying. Just remember to flip your batch of chapatis every time you add in a newly cooked one.That way, they all stay soft and warm.
- Gently roll out your coiled up dough into smaller circles
- Transfer the rolled out dough by draping it over your rolling pin and gently laying it on your pan.
- Allow the chapati to sit on the pan for about 1 minute until you see golden brown spots appear on the side of the chapati that’s touching the pan.
- Using a spoon or a turner, carefuly flip the chapati over.
- Apply about 1 teaspoon of oil on the surface with the golden brown spots. Make sure to spread the oil all round the edges
- Flip the chapati over again and oil the other side just like you did the first side.It should now have light golden brown spots on it. Once both sides of the chapati have the light golden brown markings, carefuly place it in the hotpot you had set aside.Continue doing this until you’ve cooked the whole batch.
WORD:For soft chapatis, make sure your oil and coconut milk or water for kneading are warm.
-By allowing your dough to rest,it helps your dough “relax” and this ultimately results in soft chapatis.
“Matoke is referred to as plantain or plantain banana in Uganda.The plantains are the staple crop. Here is a method on how to prepare better matoke than you have always been doing it.
- 8 -10 plantains
- 1 lemon
- Corn oil (for frying)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 -3 chopped tomatoes
- 1 green and 1 red pepper pepper ,chopped(hoho)
- 3 -4 garlic crushed(Kitunguu saumu)
- 1 chilli pepper, chopped(pilipili)- It’s optional
- salt or cayenne(to taste)
- A bunch of coriander (dhania)
- Peel the plantains(bananas)
- Cut into cubes
- Sprinkle with lemon juice, and set aside.
- Heat oil in a large pan.
- Fry the Onion, tomatoes, green and red pepper(hoho), and garlic together.
- Add spices to taste.(salt and chilli pepper)
- Reduce heat. Add plantains. Cover and simmer over low heat until plantains are tender.
- Finally add the dhania leaves and turn off the heat.
Serve them hot.
Plantains/green bananas keep the digestive tract healthy (they act as food for friendly probiotic bacteria). The good intestinal bacteria ferment the resistant starch in green bananas and use it to make energy. In turn, this helps to drive away bad bacteria that causes chronic colon problems and diarrhoea.
Chamomile tea is one of the popular varieties of tea in the market and it has many health benefits and uses. These include;
- Its ability to protect the skin,
- Lower stress levels,
- Regulate sleep
- Sooth menstrual symptoms(cramping).
- Boosts immune systems
- Manages diabetes
Here is one of the easiest ways of preparing the chamomile tea:
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup of milk
>Heat all ingredients until they are very hot. Add the sweetener of your choice and drink.
For most people,this herbal tea has a comforting effect.