The best approach, I think, to a well balanced gluten-free diet is finding food that is naturally gluten-free. I’m a big fan of Indian food and thankfully they do a lot of work with chic pea flour. The problem with going gluten-free these days is that it is now ‘trendy’ – and unfortunately ‘trendy’ equals expensive. I went along to a local Indian wholesaler/retailer and found chic pea flour, rice flour and buckwheat flour considerably cheaper than elsewhere. There was also a huge variety of different rices, grains and seeds – again less expensive than most places. My local Asian grocer has great rice noodles, spices, herbs and numerous crispy rice based snacks. They also had a great range of tofu, teas and other ‘trendy’ foods all remarkably cheaper than the local supermarket chains. After my shopping spree I decided to make some onion bhajis.
Onion bhajis are awesome naturally gluten-free appetisers that go well with a nice spicy curry. They don’t take much effort to make and are surprisingly hard to screw up – apart from the whole hot oil business.
1 cup chic pea/garbanzo bean/channa flour
1/4 cup rice flour
1 cup water
1 large onion – finely sliced
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp chilli powder
1/4 cup oil
Mix flour, baking powder, turmeric, chilli, cumin and water until smooth. Add onions and stir until onions are well coated. Heat oil in fry pan, I used rice bran oil. Place small dollops of the mixture into the oil and turn over once golden brown. Drain well on paper towel, sprinkle with salt and serve with chutney. I found a nice tamarind chutney at my local Indian store – it went well with the bhajis, not sure what it is supposed to be served with – but it worked well.