Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Indian Cooking Challenge - Kashmiri Dum Aloo

I was almost ready to give this ICC Challenge a miss as I could not find baby potatoes in any nearby store. I think the use of baby potatoes makes this dish extra special and authentic. Fortunately, I found these at Trader Joes today and made this traditional Kashmiri dish this evening. It turned out pretty well. I made a few changes to the original recipe which I have noted below.

Ingredients -
For the Marinade -

12 -13 baby potatoes / even small potatoes
3- 4 nos Kashmiri red chiles - roasted and powdered (I used - 1 tsp kashmiri chilli powder)
2 1/2 cups Fresh yoghurt (must not be sour)
1 tsp Ginger powder (I used - 1 tsp minced ginger)
1 tbsp Fennel/aniseed powder
1/2 tsp Cardamom powder

For the Masala -
4 tbsps Mustard oil (I used - regular Canola oil)
6 cloves roasted and powdered
A pinch of asafoetida
Vegetable/ canola/ sunflower cooking oil to deep fry potatoes
1 tsp Cumin seeds, roasted gently and ground into a powder
1 tsp Garam masala
Salt to taste
A cup of firm dough made from flour and water

Method -
1. Wash the potatoes well and poke all over with a fork. Then soak in water for 20 minutes. You can mix a tsp of salt to the water you are going soak the potatoes.
2. Heat a pan with oil for deep frying, Then reduce to medium flame and roast all the potatoes till golden in colour. Drain on a kitchen towel and keep aside
3. In a bowl, add yogurt, chili powder, ginger, cardamom and fennel powders and mix well into a paste. Then add the potatoes to this paste and keep it aside.
4. Heat the mustard/ regular canola oil in another pan, add the clove powder and asafetida and mix well.
5. Then add a half cup of hot water and salt to taste and bring to a boil.
6. To this mix, add in the potato-yoghurt mix, stir thoroughly and cover.
7. To do the dum, seal the edges of the pan's cover with the dough to ensure no steam can escape. Put on the stove, cook on a low flame for 10-15 minutes.
8. Turn off the flame, remove the cover and add the cumin powder and garam masala powder, and cover again quickly. Leave for 5 minutes.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Plantain Vadai/ Plantain Fritters

This place has been dead for a while. Life has been very hectic and busy and it has been a real challenge to find some time to post new recipes. But I love blogging and I'm going to try posting atleast a few recipes every month from now on.
It has been snowning all day today and I was in a mood to have some hot and spicy deep fried snack. I love dal vadais/ fritters and always try experimenting adding new veggies to the vadais. I had couple of plantains in my refrigerator that had to be used up. The key here is to use slightly ripe plantains which give these vadais a nice sweet flavor. These vadais tasted heavenly!

Ingredients -
1/2 cup channa dal
2 plantains/ raw bananas
3-4 dried red chillies
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
3-4 green chillies
10-12 curry leaves finely chopped (optional)
1 tbsp finely chopped ginger
1 cup finely chopped onions
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
salt to taste
oil for deep frying

Method -
1. Soak channa dal in water overnight or for 4-5 hrs.
2. Cook the plantains/ raw bananas in a pressure cooker.
3. Drain all the water from the dal and grind the dal along with the dried red chillies and cumin seeds into a coarse paste in the food processor/ blender.
4. Peel the skin off the plantains and mash them making sure there are no lumps.
5. In a bowl, take the dal mixture and add the mashed plantains, onions, green chillies, curry leaves, cilantro, ginger and salt and mix well.
6. Heat oil in a pan or kadhai.
7. Make small flat patties of the mixture and deep fry in the hot oil on both sides till they turn golden brown and crisp.