Bombay Aloo (bŏmbē ālū – बॉम्बे आलू)

The secret to perfection here is just the right amount of salt (don’t be shy, but don’t be silly either), and DO NOT OVERCOOK THE POTATOES!

Perfect as a vegetarian main course with rice and coriander salad, but it also goes really well with all sorts of other curry dishes if you want to have it as an accompaniment.

Serves 4-6 as a side dish.

The ingredients:

Small waxy potatoes – 1lb
Ghee – ½ teaspoon
Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
Black mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
Turmeric – ½ teaspoon
Chilli powder – ¼ teaspoon
Salt – 1 teaspoon
Cherry tomatoes – ½ a punnet (about 15 ish)
Tomato purée – 1 tablespoon
Water – ¼ pint

*I add this a little at a time, sometimes I need a little less, sometimes more; it all depends upon the texture you’re looking for, I always think the sheen of the ghee on the sauce makes mine look like thin velvet.

The recipe:

  • Peel, chop and par-boil the potatoes, and then drain with a couple of sheets of kitchen paper over them (this absorbs the steam, which helps them to sauté later in the recipe).
  • Heat the ghee and fry the cumin and mustard seeds.
  • Once the seeds start to pop (this will only take a few seconds), add the potatoes and sauté until they begin to turn golden.
  • Add the chilli powder, turmeric, salt and chopped tomatoes.
  • Once the tomatoes begin to break down, add the tomato purée and water.
  • Continue cooking until the potatoes are cooked through (but only just, this is nowhere near as nice if the potatoes are overcooked).
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