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Indian Fried Spiced Potato Balls (Bonda)

Spiced potato balls – made with mashed boiled potatoes, a melange of spices, coated in a thick chickpea flour batter, and deep fried to perfection.

These fried spiced potato balls turn the humble tuber into a scrumptious snack. Add a variety of spices and you will be left licking your fingers and asking for more. There hasn’t been one person that I have made these for that has told me they did not like them. It’s one of those snacks that both kids and adults go crazy for – and so will you once you try them.

Ingredients for Spiced Potato Balls

Potatoes, some daily use spices, and some exotic spices. All combined to get a perfect Indian snack.

Ingredients
Ingredients for spiced potato balls

This is what you will need:

  • 2 baking potatoes
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon whole black mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
  • 10 fresh curry leaves
  • 1 small red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 inch fresh ginger
  • 1 red or green chili
  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon dried mango powder (or juice of 1 lime)
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (or red chili powder)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 water (plus more as needed)

To start, we need to boil the potatoes. In a large pot, boil some water and salt and add the potatoes to it. Allow them to boil until they are soft. I boil mine whole with the skin on. That helps keep extra moisture out of the potatoes. If you skin them and chop them, they get very soft and will not hold the shape. Once boiled and cooled peel and mash them, and set them aside.

Nuts and spices
Nuts and spices

While the potatoes are boiling, let’s get the “masala” ready. Finely chop the onion, garlic, ginger, and chili and set aside. In a pan, heat the oil until it’s really hot and almost smoking. Add the mustard seeds and once they pop, add the curry leaves and cumin seeds to the pan. The whole house will smell amazing with the fragrance. Add the cashew nuts to the pan and allow them to cook for about 2-3 minutes (or until they are brownish).

In a bowl
In a bowl

Add the onions, garlic, ginger, and chili to the pan and cook for 2 minutes or until they are softened. Turn the heat off and allow the masala to cool down completely. Once cooled, add the onion spice mixture to the bowl with the mashed potatoes. At the same time, we can add the dried mango or lime juice and salt to taste. Mix well so that the potatoes are all well combined with the spices. I like to taste the mix so I know if I need to adjust for salt and spices.

Potato mixture
Potato mixture for the spiced potato balls

Once the mixture is ready, we can make 12 equal balls out of it. I make my spiced potato balls about 2 inches in diameter, so make each potato ball about 2 inches in diameter. Set them aside while you make the chickpea flour batter. In a large mixing bowl, combine the chickpea flour and rice flour. Add the cayenne, cumin, coriander, turmeric, and salt to the bowl and mix everything so that the spices are well blended with the chickpea flour.

Chickpea flour batter
Chickpea flour batter

Before we start the batter, let’s get the oil ready. In a large pan or pot, add your frying oil and heat it to about 350 degrees F. To make the batter, add the water slowly to form a pancake like batter. If needed, add more water – one tablespoon at a time till you have the desired consistency. It needs to be thick enough to coat the balls. I like to have a thick layer of batter on the balls. But if you prefer to make your batter a little thinner, that’s fine too.

Drop each ball into the batter one at a time and using a fork or spoon, drop them into the heated oil. Fry them for about 3-4 minutes or until the batter is browned from the outside and has crisped up. Remove the fried spiced potato balls from the oil and lay them on a paper towel lined tray or dish. This will help absorb any extra oil.

Indian fried spiced potato balls
Indian fried spiced potato balls

Enjoy the spiced potato balls hot with a side of my mango and coriander chutney and my chai.

Indian Spiced Potato Balls (Bonda)

Course: SnackCuisine: IndianDifficulty: Easy
Servings

12

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes
Calories

276

kcal
Total time

40

minutes

Spiced potato balls – made with mashed boiled potatoes, a melange of spices, coated in a thick chickpea flour batter, and deep fried to perfection.

Ingredients

  • 2 baking potatoes

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 1 teaspoon whole black mustard seeds

  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

  • 10 fresh curry leaves

  • 1 small red onion

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 1 inch fresh ginger

  • 1 red or green chili

  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts (optional)

  • 1 teaspoon dried mango powder (or juice of 1 lime)

  • salt to taste

  • 1 cup chickpea flour

  • 1/4 cup rice flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (or red chili powder)

  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder

  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder

  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder

  • salt to taste

  • 1/2 water (plus more as needed)

  • oil for deep frying

Directions

  • Boil 5 cups of water and salt in a large pot. Place both the whole potatoes (skin on) into the water. Allow them to boil until soft. Once boiled, allow the potatoes to cool completely then peel off the skin. Mash them into a large mixing bowl.
  • While the potatoes are boiling, finely chop the onion, garlic, ginger, and chili and set aside.
  • In a pan, heat the oil until it’s really hot and almost smoking. Add the mustard seeds and once they pop, add the curry leaves and cumin seeds to the pan.
  • Add the cashew nuts to the pan and cook till they are brown and fragrant – about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the onions, garlic, ginger, and chili to the pan and cook for 2 minutes or until they are softened. Turn the heat off and allow them to cool down completely.
  • Once the spice mix has cooled down, add it to the mashed potatoes. At the same time, add the dried mango or lime juice and salt to taste. Mix well so that the potatoes are all well combined with the spices.
  • Make 12 balls out of the mix and set them aside.
  • In a mixing bowl, mix together the chickpea flour and rice flour. Add the cayenne, cumin, coriander, turmeric, and salt to the bowl and mix everything so that the spices are well blended with the chickpea flour.
  • Add the water slowly to form a pancake like batter. If needed, add more water – one tablespoon at a time till you have the desired consistency.
  • Heat some oil in a pan or pot for deep frying to 350 degrees F.
  • Once the oil is heated enough, drop one potato ball into the batter at a time. Make sure the ball is coated well and using a spoon or fork, drop it into the hot oil.
  • Cook for about 3-4 minutes or until the batter is starting to brown and cooked through.
  • Enjoy with a side of chutney and chai.

– Check out other snack recipes here.

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2 Comments

  1. These are some really yummy bondas. I made some and incorporated coriander seeds to the potato mash. They were so delicious.