Kashmiri Dum Aloo
Whole baby potatoes cooked in mild yogurt and tomato base curry, perfect for a delicious Indian meatless dinner with rice or naan!
Indian Kashmiri Dum Aloo, a mild spiced whole potatoes (aloo) curry cooked lite spices, and healthy yogurt and tomato base.
This will be the best tasting, authentic and tender whole potato curry you will ever enjoy! With this post, I'm unfolding few of my favorite hacks to make tender and delicious dum aloo curry, every time!
Oh, and it is not as spicy as it looks. This curry has lite Indian spices, cooling yogurt base, and gorgeous lush red (deceiving) color from tomatoes. In my family, this potato curry is delicious dinner of choice any season of the year.
I often hesitate from cooking whole potatoes for any Indian recipe which is why there is not many potato, I mean Indian potato recipes on blog. Why so?
Well, two reasons:
1. I don't want to painstakingly work on making whole potato tender when I can cut'em and reduce cooking time.
2. Also, I don't like whole potatoes recipes which leave potatoes flavorless in the middle. You know!? that dead potato center that has no flavor?! It is not for me.
And dum potatoes(aloo) are traditionally made whole. One trick is to buy small baby which will cook quickly but even those can still lack flavor in center. What good a recipe, if main component of recipe, aloo is not cooked properly?!
Here is what I do to make sure aloo in this Dum Aloo recipe are cooked fully and have ton of flavor even when I eat a whole potato. Big promise? Trust me, it is not false promise.
1. I cut most of baby the potatoes in half. (Rule is: no potato should be more that 2 inch thick). So go ahead and use big potatoes for this recipe. Just make sure to follow the rule and cut them 2 inch thick.
2. I pierce the peeled raw potatoes with fork to allow quick cooking, and also to allow penetrating flavors into the potato. (very important)
PS: First-time, I saw Indian Master Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, making this recipe in a TV show in India. In his golden words, piercing the aloo (potatoes) with fork make'em crispy and lite like "air" when fried.
3. Instead of frying for few minutes to just crisp the skin. I like to cook potatoes all way through while shallow frying. This takes 15 minutes but ensures no-raw-aloo in the final dum aloo curry. Yes, you can deep fry'em too. But cooking slow in less oil helps me keep it low-oil and also aloo do not burn from outside while still raw middle. In short, spending 15 minutes in less oil has turned best for me.
4. Now, to enhance the flavors, I toast the spices before sauteing in curry and use tomato puree instead of fresh tomatoes which make a lot difference in the taste and flavor of dum aloo.
Friends, follow these simple tricks and enjoy a delicious vegetarian dum aloo dinner, any season of the year.
Oh, and don't forget to serve rice or naan on the side. A few recipes in the suggestions below:
Continuing my thoughts on spices and Indian's love for curry a.k.a spiced food.. I must tell you that in Indian homes, a curry is for dinner, no matter how hot it is outside. :) And it gets scorching 120+ Fahrenheit in summers. According to elders, spices in curry help fight stress, calm you down, and make you feel good even on a hot summer day. Well, not sure if this statement is true or not, but we love curries whole year long! Just so you know, not all spices are hot and warming. A few are, surprisingly cooling and are preferred in summer days. Since we talking about it, let me give you short list of warm and cool Indian spices. Whenever you are making a curry, choose these depending upon when you serving it. Here is the list:
Cooling Spices: cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, green cardamom are all cooling, and mild. So splurge in cardamom tea, yogurt based curries like these dum aloo, or cumin (jeera) lassi or fennel ice cream in summers!
Warming Spices: List is endless. Cinnamon, black cardamom, mustard seeds, cloves, star anise, bay leaves, curry leaves, mace, ratan jot... and list goes on and on...
I hope you have wonderful day. I see you around soon..
A few breads and rice recipes to pair with Dum Aloo:
Kashmiri Dum Alooreviews) (2
1. Wash the potatoes. Peel off skin and cut big potatoes in half. Prick each potato with fork 2-3 times. (this makes potatoes tender faster when frying and also help absorb flavor in curry sauce later) Additional Notes: Or to save time, cut all in halves and big ones in quarters.2. Heat a dry pan. Add all the spices except chili powder and toast for 30 second or until fragrant. Remove in mortar pestle or spice grinder and grind to a powder. (or skip this step and use powder of all.) Also, soak cashews in milk and set aside.
3. Heat 3 tbsp oil in a heavy bottom (prefer non-stick) sauce pan. Add potatoes and cook until crispy almost brown from all sides.4. Remove potatoes on a plate lined with paper towel. Additional Notes: Test for done-ness - pierce knife through one potato it should sink in smooth. (I mean to say - potatoes should be knife tender). It took me 15 minutes to get'em knife tender in shallow oil.
5. Discard half of the oil from pan. In remaining half, add onion, garlic and ginger and saute until onions are soft. Add chili powder and mix in well.6. While onions cook, grind cashews to a paste with soaking milk. In onion mixture add ground toasted spices and cook for 1 minute. Then add cashew paste and tomato puree and cook for 2-3 minutes until oil separates.
7. Now, reduce heat to lowest, then add yogurt, few tbsp at a time and mix after each addition until all yogurt is in. Increase the heat and continue cook for another 5 minutes or until oil shows on top. Now add fried potatoes with 1/2 cup water, mix well and cook covered for 5 minutes.8. Remove from heat, garnish with cilantro and serve with rice or naan. Recipes for naan and rice in suggestion sections above.
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