Aloo Mattar (Potato And Peas Curry)

This is a classic dish that, I suspect, originated from the North Indian state of Punjab. It is now more or less a national dish. Each region in the country have their own minor variations. But the basic dish is the same. It is a favourite in every household and , in days of yore, was prepared mainly in winter. That’s because peas is normally available in winter. But, nowadays, with technology making frozen peas available throughout the year, this dish is made right round the year. I tend to avoid frozen peas (or frozen anything) and keep my ingredients as fresh as possible. This dish is therefore made only in winter in my home. To say that this ‘everyday’ dish is tasty in a huge understatement.

Aloo Mattar

2 large potatoes, cubed
1 cup fresh, green peas, shelled
1 large onion, chopped roughly
1/2″ piece of ginger
2 cloves garlic
1 large tomato, chopped
1/2 tsp red chili powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder (haldi, manjal podi)
1/2 tsp coriander powder (dhania powder, kothamalli podi)
1/2 tsp cumin powder (jeera powder, jeeraga podi)
Salt to taste
1 cup water (add more if you want a thinner gravy)
1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
Transfer the onion, tomato, ginger and garlic to a blender
Grind to a smooth paste (add a little water only if necessary)
Heat a wok
Add the cumin seeds
When they begin to splutter, add the ground paste
Add the coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder and chili powder
Mix well
Cook on medium flame for minutes
Add the potatoes and peas
Add salt
Add 1 cup water, cover and cook for 15 minutes or till the potatoes are done
Add more water, if necessary
Once done, remove from flame and garnish with coriander leaves
Serve hot with Indian flat breads

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