This easy-to-make recipe for onion bahjees uses chickpea flour and spices

Onion bahjee recipe on an open fire

  • Easy

This recipe for authentic onion bhajees is best made over an open fire when camping or cooking outdoors, to save the kitchen from smelling. Recipe by Cleve West.


There’s something special about cooking outside. It’s even more magical when food is cooked just yards from where it’s grown and within minutes of being harvested. If you have grown onions this year, try cooking with them a little differently and make these easy-to-make onion bahjees. This is a family recipe from my grandmother. It takes practice to get the right consistency and to get the oil hot enough so the bahjees don’t end up soggy. Cooking in a wok over a fire saves the kitchen from smelling like a spice market, but don’t cook in hot oil in the rain.



  • Onions 4, thinly sliced
  • Gram flour 350g, (chickpea flour)
  • Baking powder 1 pinch
  • Tumeric 2tsp
  • Ginger 2cm nub
  • Chillies chopped, to taste
  • Fresh corriander chopped, including stems
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • Water 250ml
  • Garlic 4-6 cloves
  • Lemon juice a squeeze
  • Sunflower or corn oil for deep frying


  • Step 1

    Sift gram flour, turmeric and baking powder into a bowl.

  • Step 2

    Add garlic, ginger, chillies, salt and pepper and mix well.

  • Step 3

    Add water little by little, stirring all the time. Aiming for a consistency between pancake and cake mix.

  • Step 4

    Add coriander and lemon juice.

  • Step 5

    Heat the oil – it is ready when batter sinks and then rises after a few seconds

  • Step 6

    Add onions – work quickly as they will release their liquid and make the mix to runny. Place several spoonfuls of mix into hot oil and let them sizzle for three minutes or until golden brown.

  • Step 7

    Remove, and drain on a plate lined with kitchen paper.

Recipe Cleve West
Photos Andrew Montgomey