Bengali alu chhok recipe inspired by a Tweet



We had reached an impasse for lunch yesterday. I wanted alu bhaaja (fried potatoes) to go with daal, rice and ilish bhaaja. K wanted alu posto (potatoes in poppy seeds) which I am bit tired off.

Then I saw a tweet from @madhumita whom I first met at the Koli Fish Festival recently. The tweet said "making aloo chokha. mashed potato with caramelised onions. perfect with muger daal bhat".

I got my answer. Improvised a bit. Briefed Bunkin Banu who wasn't bunkin for a change. And here you have, a very easy and tasty dish. As someone told me yesterday, potato is rich in vitamin C. And as I always say, God ran out of ideas in vegetables after he created potatoes. One of his best works.

So here's my recipe for alu chhok:

Prep:
  • Boil 4 potatoes in a pressure cooker. Peel. Half and keep
 Cook:
  • Heat oil in a pan. 1 tablespoon will do
  • Add some Nigella Seeds or kaalo jeere
  • One the seeds crackle and the oil splutters, add a tablespoon of finely chopped onions
  • One this turns translucent add two split green chillies and one dry red chillies
  • Then add the potatoes and half a teaspoon of salt
  • Use a ladle and smash and mash the potatoes
  • See that the Nigella seeds and chillies spread into the potatoes
  • Switch of the flame once bits of the potato browns and becomes a tad crisp
  • Top with a bit of fresh chopped coriander leaves
That's it. Made for a great Saturday afternoon lunch. Kainaz and I both loved it.

Nigella seeds and coriander make it Bengali. If you don't have these then you can use whole mustard seeds and curry leaves to to give it a South or West Indian feel. Add the curry leaves to the oil in the beginning then


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