Sunday, 24 April 2011

“Bibbe Che Bhaji” or “Biya Bhaji” the traditional way!

Finally after a long time I have followed a recipe to the last possible instructions.
When I posted “Bibbe Che Bhaji” in Makkhani gravy Rupali from RecipeGrabBag asked me if I have the traditional recipe.I decided to ask the Expert-- Kaki, my husband’s best friend’s mother.

Kaki generally prepares food spicy, hot and all the adjectives that you can think of for a pungent meal but she knows we cannot take that much heat so she told me to go easy on the spices. She rattled off the list of spices and the amounts she will generally use for them so that I can get some approximation. What I made was something that was mild as my younger daughter relishes this bhaji. You can increase the spices if you wish.

I could barely get a snap of the veggie before it was Attack!!

4 onions, chopped fine (I used 2 huge ones)
4 tomatoes, chopped fine (used 2 again)
100 cashew nuts

For the masala:
3 cloves
4 pepper
1 green cardamom
1 black cardamom or masala elichi
1 inch piece of cinnamon
1 small piece nutmeg (if you are grating it about 1/8 tsp)
¼ tsp haldi/turmeric
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 goose berry sized tamarind
4-5 red chillies or 1 tblspn red chilli powder
1 tsp poppy seeds
1 cup fresh grated coconut
3 cloves garlic
Oil (I use rice bran)
Fresh coriander

1.       Soak the cashew nut overnight in case you are using fresh ones. Helps easy peeling. If you are using the ones that are packaged I suppose you will have to soak them for some time. I am not sure about this but open to suggestions.

2.       In a kadhai/wok add the coconut gratings, ½ onion and the garlic and fry over low flame with a little oil till the coconut becomes reddish. I am sorry the after picture is not too good I was in a hurry.
Before frying
After frying
3.       In another smaller kadhai/wok fry in oil the poppy seeds on low flame till reddish. Transfer to the mixer and fry the rest of the masala ingredients except the red chilli powder and the haldi/turmeric individually till they are well done. Should give out a lovely aroma that is my test for frying the masala. Transfer to the mixer, add the haldi/turmeric and red chilli powder on the hot masala and let it cool a bit.
The masala before frying

After frying just before grinding

4.       Grind to a fine paste with the coconut mixture using water.

5.       Meanwhile in a thick bottomed pan in a little oil fry the rest of the onions till translucent add the tomatoes stir.
6.       Add the cashew nuts and stir. Close the lid and cook tightly covered on low flame till the steam escapes from the sides of the vessel. Took me about 5-6 minutes. The cashew nuts are cooked now.

7.       Add the masala, add salt, and 1 ½ cups water.
8.       Simmer of another 5-6 minutes without the lid on low flame. The gravy will thicken when the desired thickness is reached switch off the gas.

9.       Garnish and serve with roti, chapatti, Unna (the traditional Goan bread) or white steaming rice.


  1. This is the first time I've heard of this...and I TOTALLY want to try it! Love the fat cashews, everything sounds so tasty :D

  2. Bhaji looks delicious and colorful. Great preparation.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  3. Rich side dish perfect for rotis.

  4. Wow!! Looking real yummy...

  5. This is very new dish to me.. can 't wait to try this

    new to ur space n so happy to follow u !
    Do visit my blog as time permits ..

  6. sounds interesting and new to me....
    looks rich and delicious dear :)

  7. wow looks super delicious! thanks for taking so much trouble to get the recipe for me :)) luv the details u have posted in the recipe. hope to try it out soon!

  8. @R: No trouble at all. Kaki is just a phone call away and I like talking to her!
    Thanks girls!

  9. delicious and perfect with rotis !!

  10. Bhaji looks irresistible and rich,truly inviting..

    Archana,regarding ur q'n about cooking soyachunks,i usually cook them in hot water and use them in curries or rice after squeezing those cooked chunks, hope i cleared ur doubt..


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