Banana stems are packed with nutrients and have amazing health benefits. To list a few, banana stem improves digestion as it is great source of dietary fibre. This eases bowel movement reducing constipation. As water content is high, it is good for body re-hydration if consumed uncooked. Good for the people having kidney stones issues. So far I have used this only in curries, salads, palya (stir fry) or in dosa. Recently I have attended pooja in a relative’s house with my family. The bajji that I ate during the lunch was so yummy and actually I could not recognize what it was made up of. Finally I came to know that it was prepared from banana stem that too after a family member revealed it. Today I got a fresh plantain stem in our own garden and I could not resist myself from preparing this out.
Here is the recipe.
Banana stem – 1 foot long
Gram flour/ Kadle hittu – ½ cup
Corn flour/ Corn starch – 3 teaspoons
Red Chilli powder – 1 teaspoon (adjust according to taste)
Salt – 1 spoon (to taste)
Ajwain/ Om kalu – ¼ teaspoon
Asafoetida – A pinch
Garam masala powder – ¼ teaspoon
Oil – for deep frying
- Remove the outer layers of banana stem that come out clean.
- Wash and clean the innermost tube and cut into round, thin slices. Soak in water for 5 minutes and remove from water. Allow to dry.
- Sprinkle little salt, half spoon of the red chilli powder and garam masala.
- Toss once in order to apply the salt and chilli to all the pieces. Cover and keep aside.
- In a vessel, take gram flour, corn flour, salt, chilli powder, ajwain/ carom seeds, and asafoetida.
- Add little water at a time to prepare the batter. The batter should not be too watery.
- It should form a thick cover to the vegetable.
- When batter is done, heat the oil in a frying pan. To check the readiness, drop little batter into oil. It should float immediately without sticking to the bottom of pan.
- When oil is ready, dip the vegetable in the batter and drop this batter covered vegetable in the oil.
- Fry until it turns to golden brown in a medium flame. Serve hot with choice of sauce like tomato sauce.
- Enjoy the banana stem bajji, its ideal for an evening snack or during a South/North Indian meal time.