Monday, March 21, 2016

Multi-Color Aloo Tikki

Aloo Tikki (potato cutlet/patty) is a versatile recipe you will find yourself making and eating in a variety of ways. For example, you can eat it as the main ingredient in a burger, or with ragda, with chole, or just plain with any chutney. Aloo Tikki can be made and stored away for a rainy day or as a snack. In honor of Holi, I've tried a slight variation and created a multi-color Aloo Tikki with assorted pureés. While the tikkis I've made are large in size, you may adjust the size as you best feel appropriate. I hope you enjoy this recipe!

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4  (makes 4 big tikkis)

  • 4 potatoes (boiled, peeled and mashed)
  • 1 small beet root (boiled and puréed)
  • 1/2 carrot (boiled and puréed)
  • 1/2 cup blanched spinach for puree
  • 1/3 cup chopped green coriander leaves for puree + 2 tablespoons for potato stuffing
  • 1 tablespoon chopped mint leaves for puree
  • 4 to 5 green chili paste (adjust accordingly based on spice preference)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black salt
  • 1/8  teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons corn starch
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil for shallow fry
  • Few strands of carrot, beet root and deep fried spinach for garnish (optional)

  1. Peel and mash the boiled potatoes
  2. Create three separate purée groups and keep aside
    • spinach, coriander leaves, and mint leaves purée (green)
    • Carrot purée (orange)
    • beet root purée (red)
  3. To create aloo stuffing, mix chili paste, ginger paste, lemon juice, black pepper, salt, coriander leaves, corn starch and black salt. Mix well.
  4. Divide the mixture into four equal parts and place in four separate bowls.
  5. In the first bowl, add turmeric powder to the potato mixture (yellow). In the second bowl, add the green purée. In the third bowl, add the orange purée. In the fourth bowl, add the red purée. Make sure to mix each bowl well.  
  6. If the mixture is too sticky, add more corn starch.
  7. Within each bowl, divide the mixtures into four small equal sized balls. Join one ball of each color by pressing together, shaping all four into a larger tikki round, about 3.5" in size. 
  8. In a pan, add oil on medium heat and shallow fry the tikki patties
  9. After frying, place the tikkis on a paper towel to absorb any extra oil.
  10. Serve with green coriander chutney and sweet sour chutney.
Colorful Aloo Tikki

Three purées - 1) Spinach, coriander and mint puree (Green), 2) Carrot puree (Orange) and 3) Beet root puree (Red)

Potato Mixture divided in four parts

Puree added, fourth one is turmeric powder
Tikkis created by joining four colors of aloo mixture together

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Chaptiwala Rotla / Jada Rotla/ Khoba Roti

For any family that enjoys a traditional Sunday meal, I highly recommend chaptiwala rotla. When I was growing up in India, we had this every Sunday not just at my house, but also at my relatives' too. My siblings and I especially love this meal. My friends and family in New York have also taken to eating rotla, which is essentially a thick flour flat bread inlaid with a pattern of pinchmarks made using your fingers. I hope you enjoy this recipe the same way I always have.

Prep Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 people

  • 4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 8 tablespoons ghee
  • 6 tablespoons ghee to smear the rotla
  • Salt to taste
  • Warm water as required

Final Product - Traditional rotla served with masala drumsticks, yellow moong dal, rotla dressing, chutney, fried chili, lemon and salad.

Directions with pictures:
Step 1: Add 8 tablespoons ghee and salt to the flour. Knead the flour with warm water and make a stiff dough (same as Bhakri dough)
Step 2: Make 4 balls with the dough
Step 3: Roll each dough ball out to 7 inches in diameter (1 to 1.5cm thick)
Step 4: Place one rotla piece on a hot tawa/griddle on low heat, make marks with a knife on upper side of the rotla, so the rotla surface doesn't bubble too much

Step 5: 
When the color changes on the top and tiny bubbles appear, turn the rotla over
Step 6: Pinch the rotla on upper side in a circular motion, working your way towards the center. Let the bottom side get crispy golden brown.
Step 6
Step 6

Step 6
Step 6: Top side, after you are done pinching
Step 7: Remove the rotla from the tawa/griddle and repeat the procedure with rest of the dough balls.

Step 8
Step 8

Step 8: With a double metal grill/papad grill/chapati grill, roast the other side of the rotla. You can also roast the rotla on a tawa with low heat as another option. (Put the metal grill on stove, let it get hot and then roast the rotla)

Step 9: Smear the rotla with the ghee and it's ready to eat! You can also add the rotla dressing to add more flavor and taste.

Rotla Dressing

This traditional Marwari dressing is paired with chaptiwala rotla and will totally transform your meal. It may also be a garnish with dal-baati (another traditional Marwari dish) or on bhakri. Comprised of ginger, garlic, turmeric and green chilies, it'll greatly enhance flavor while also providing an appealing color palette to your meal.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1/2 tablespoon minced fresh turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced green chilies
  • 2 tablespoons ghee (purified butter)
  • salt to taste
Note: Do not use a mixer to chop. Ingredients should be chopped with knife on cutting board. 

  1. In a ladle, add ghee, ginger, garlic, turmeric and green chilies.
  2. On low heat, sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add salt and sauté for a few seconds longer.
  3. Dressing is ready to serve.

    Wednesday, March 2, 2016

    Yellow Split Moong Dal

    In a traditional Indian meal, the entree is accompanied by bread (roti, naan, etc), rice and a lentil, which is also known as dal. This light and easy dal that goes with any meal is comprised of yellow moong. I typically pair it with jada rotla or chaptiwala rotla. I make this dal at least once a week and the recipe, while it requires some prep time, is easy to follow.

    Soaking Time: 30 minutes
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cooking time: 30 minutes
    Servings: 4

    • 1 cup yellow split moong dal (washed and soaked for at least 30 minutes in warm water)
    • Approx. 8 cups of water
    • 1 tablespoon ghee or oil
    • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds/jeera
    • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds/ rai
    • Pinch of asafoetida/hing
    • 2 medium green chilies (vertically slit)
    • 1/2 plum tomatoes (diced)
    • 6 pieces of Kokum (optional, washed and soaked)
    • 2 dehydrated red chilies
    • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon cumin powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
    • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
    • Fresh green coriander leaves, chopped
    • 5 to 6 curry leaves
    • fresh squeeze lemon juice
    • salt to taste
    1. Boil the water in a pot and add the dal (stir occasionally and remove the frothy residue/scum)
    2. Cook until tender and then  fully blend with a Indian mixer made of wood called RAI in India. Dal and water should be one, (see the picture of  RAI below)
    3. Consistency of dal depends on individual preference (not too thin or too thick)
    4. Add salt, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, slit green chilies, curry leaves and kokum
    5. Cook for five to six minutes and then turn off the stove
    6. Heat the ghee in a ladle on a low heat
    7. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds to the ghee. As the seeds crackle, add dehydrated red chili, hing and diced tomatoes. Sauté for a few seconds and then add red chili powder.
    8. Pour mix into the dal and stir
    9. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves
    10. Add lemon juice as per your taste
    11. Serve hot with chaptiwala rotla or with any Indian vegetable, rice, or roti

    Wooden RAI (hand mixer)