aloo tikki with tamarind chana masala

As much as I love good quality meat (ALWAYS from Southampton Butchers), I do also enjoy a lot of vegetarian food, mainly because I’m a potato fiend! Indian cuisine provides some of the best veggie dishes out there, using a variety of pulses and vegetables.

Aloo tikki is one of my favourite dishes, made up of spiced mashed potato cakes. Many versions come with different fillings inside, as well as the addition of semolina or sago to the outside to add extra crunch. With this recipe, I keep the aloo tikki simple, and let the tamarind and tomato chickpea curry do the work – the sweet and sour flavour adds a lot of depth to the dish. This makes a great starter for a homemade Indian feast.

I’m so excited for my trip to India next March, and hopefully I’ll get to taste the real deal. We’re visiting Mumbai, Jaipur, Delhi and Goa, so if you have any suggestions of places to visit or where to eat, please let me know!

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Of course, I do like to start any Indian feast with the basics – a bottle of Cobra, a mix of plain and garlic and coriander poppadoms, and a selection of dips – raita, spicy mango chutney and lime pickle.

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ingredients

for aloo tikki

1 tbsp vegetable oil

200g floury potatoes – i used maris piper, peeled and diced

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1 x green chilli, finely chopped

seasoning, to taste

for tamarind chana masala

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tbsp mustard seeds

1 x large onion, chopped

2 x garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 inch piece of fresh ginger, finely chopped

2 x green chillies, finely chopped

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp garam masala

1 tsp tomato puree

1 x 400g tin of chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes

2 heaped tsp tamarind paste

1/2 a lemon, juice only

small handful of fresh coriander, chopped

seasoning, to tasre

lemon wedge and fresh coriander leaves, to garnish

serves 2 – although you’ll have a bit of leftover curry!

method

  1. cook potatoes in boiling water until soft. set aside to cool.
  2. once potatoes have cooled, mash until smooth. stir in dry spices, chilli and seasoning. roll into balls (roughly the size of golf balls) and squash down into a patty shape. pop in the fridge until you’re ready to cook them.
  3. in a large saucepan, heat the vegetable oil over a medium temperature, and add the onion. fry until softened, then add the garlic, ginger and chillies. stir well and cook for a further 1-2 minutes.
  4. add the dry spices to the pan, and ensure the onion mixture is well coated. the spices will be roasting in the pan and enhancing the flavour. add the tomato puree and stir well. add the chickpeas and pour in the chopped tomatoes. stir in the tamarind paste, lemon juice and fresh coriander, cover and leave to simmer for 15-20 minutes. if it starts to dry out, add a splash of water.
  5. for the aloo tikki, heat vegetable oil in a wide set saucepan over a medium-high temperature. carefully add the potato patties, and fry for 1-2 minutes on each side or until crispy. serve on top of the chickpea curry, with the lemon wedge and fresh coriander leaves to garnish.
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