Streetfood: Dum Aloo (दम आलू)
One of the projects I am working on for several years now, is streetfood, a collection of photos and recipes of food prepared by the ‘common man and woman’ I meet during my travels. Simple food I eat in the homes I have been invited to, or at the small road stalls when on my way. Eventually, these images and recipes will be published, but to make your mouth water, I will post a few already.
Dum Aloo (दम आलू) is a dish that originates in Kashmir, but is now popular all over India. I used an electric fryer to deepfry the potatoes, but in India a karahi filled with ghee or oil is often used to fry them golden brown. The recipe below will be one of the recipes in my India ‘streetfood book’ (vegetarian), published this year. Together with graphic designer Noëlla Straakenbroek from Sterck Design, we are working hard to finish the book. And that involves testing all the recipes, enjoying these wonderful Indian dishes. This one goes well with chapati (bread), a cucumber raita and lime pickle. Enjoy!
Dum Aloo and ‘dummy’ of my soon to be published book!
Shopping list | ingredients | preparations:
- 1 kilo potatoes (smaller ones are better)
- 1 cup of water
- little salt
- ghee or oil
- 1 chopped onion
- 1 can tomato paste
- 150 ml curd
- hot water
- 1 green pepper (seeds removed and sliced)
- 1 tsp garam masala powder
- 4 cloves
- 4 bay leaves
- 10 black peppercorns
- 4 green cardamoms
- 1 black cardamom
- 1 cinnamon stick
For the paste:
- 1 large onion chopped
- 1 garlic bulb (12 cloves)
- 2 tbsp ginger
- 10 black peppercorns
- 1 tsp poppy seeds
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 dry red chilies
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- Peel and wash potatoes, prick all over with a fork and soak them in salted water for minimal two hours
- Dry the potatoes and heat the ghee or oil in a karahi (see above) or use electric fryer .
- Deep fry the potatoes until golden brown, drain them using for instance absorbent kitchen paper .
- Heat a little ghee in a frying pan and fry onions with all the spices until golden.
- Grind the paste ingredients to a fairly smooth paste, using a blender.
- Mix this paste with the fried onions, stir well. Add some water to avoid burning.
- Cook for 10 minutes. Add the tomato puree, curd and salt.
- Add potatoes and a cup hot water and stir over a low heat for 5 minutes. The gravy has to remain relatively thick. Add water if necessary. Leave on a very small flame, stir regularly. Potatoes have to be cooked, but not too soft.
- Sprinkle the dum aloo with pepper and garam masala and cook for few minutes. Serve hot!