Four quick and easy recipes using the humble potato

My Rajasthani neighbour, M Aunty, always says – “aloo hi to aisi sabzi hai jo sabme mel kha jaati hai!” (Potatoes is one such vegetable that will blend with any vegetable), and she is right.
She uses potatoes almost everyday. I swear by them (not M Aunty but the potatoes) too, but I keep a lot of variety in my cuisine. If we had a poll I am sure potatoes would top the list among kitchen necessities. If you are not a potato lover I would say – Awww….you are an exception to the rule, and that only goes to prove the rule. 🙂 One thing is certain – you cannot ignore or hate potatoes. They were introduced by the Western world to us, and they are here to stay.
Whenever I am in short supply of cabbage, I add a potato to increase the quantity. Same goes with cauliflower, gourds or for that matter, any other vegetable. Potatoes not only blend with most vegetables but also add great taste to simple curries transforming them from ordinary to exotic. Over the last few months, I have collected many everyday recipes with potatoes in tango, but not alone. Since they are all easy recipes for the novice cook and since the star of most of these curries (dry and wet) is the ubiquitous and humble potato – I decided to make it a tribute to our household favourite, not only because of its taste but because of its simplicity.
It is a coincidence that they are all yellow in colour, thanks to generous doses of haldi (turmeric). Turmeric adds an appetizing bright yellow color and also kills germs, so it is a must for most Indian dishes. Only be careful while handling as it tends to stain clothes.  These items are all marching to FIC – Yellow. FIC is an acronym for Food in colors, an event I started and carried on, as I was encouraged by your enthusiasm.   It celebrates the colours that go on to make food look great, and tempt us by sight. This month we celebrate yellow.On a different note, I got my first press mention in Delhi Times of India’s ‘Whats Hot’ Section. Ms. Dhawan, the columnist had contacted me sometime back asking me my real name and wrote the rest of the stuff. I did tell her I am fun loving and a mother of two, but the rest of the compliments are hers! Her short review is great but the ‘Aunty’ thing – how did she construe that without knowing me?  I don’t like it very much when strangers or acquaintances use a close form of addressal.Click here to read the review. I am sure many more of you will be there on the column soon – It is called blog-e-binge.

It was Priyanka of Asankhana, who first told me about it through her comment. Thank you Priyanka.

1. Recipe : Aloo Parval Rasedar (Potato with Indian gherkins)


I love parval (gherkins), but by itself it means a lot of work – scraping the skin off the parval is one pain. To top it, the quantity of cooked parval is 1/8th of what you start with – not a good option for cooking dinner when you get back from work.
Cheers, for the potatoes – add a couple and you get a wholesome gravy, tasty veggie and increased quantity! Not to mention the ease, of course, and satisfied members.
Heat a tsp. of oil.  Splutter a tsp. of cumin and ajwain seeds.
Add 2 cubed potatoes and 1/2kg. chopped gherkins, and a little salt.
Saute till the gherkins give out water. If needed add 1/2 a cup of water. Cook till the potatoes are softened.
Adjust chilli powder, turmeric (I like lots), salt and a pinch of amchoor (or half a lime).
Garnish and serve with rotis or rice. I was short of potatoes so added a fistful of peas too.

2. Recipe : Aloo ki subzi (Potato in gravy)

Aloo ki subzi
This aloo ki subzi is a common one. I make it when I have run out of veggies, and need something fast.
Method:(Serves 2 adults)
Heat a tbsp. of oil, throw in a tsp. of cumin seeds. Let them splutter, add 1/2 a tsp. of ajwain, a tsp. of grated ginger and 3 washed and cubed potatoes.
Add enough water to cover the potatoes, add 1/2 a tsp. of turmeric, chilli powder and salt to taste, a tsp. of dried fenugreek leaves or kasuri methi.
Cover and cook till potatoes go absolutely soft and mushy. Remove the lid, and run with a ladle mashing up two or three cubes to blend with the water. Serve hot with rotis or puris.

3. Aloo Baingan Rasedar (Potatoes and aubergines in stock)

Aloo baingan

Potatoes pair up extremely well with eggplants, and this curry works out great for those families if the members are choosy. I make this sometimes because P hates brinjals and I like it when made this way. So P takes the potatoes while the rest of us enjoy the curry as a whole.

Method: Serves 4 gluts:

Heat a tbsp. of oil, splutter a tsp. each of cumin and ajwain seeds.

Add 1/2 a cup of chopped onions. Saute till transluscent.

Add 1/2 a cup of chopped tomatoes. Saute till oil trickles. You can hasten the process if you add a little salt to the tomatoes.

Add 3 cubed eggplants and 3 potatoes and saute for a few minutes. Cover with a lid and keep stirring every now and then. If needed add a cup of water and cook till potatoes soften.

Add 1/2 tsp. of coriander powder, chilli powder to taste and adjust the salt. Garnish with coriander and serve hot with rotis. I love it with hot steamed rice too.

4. Aloo Methi Dry Curry (Potatoes and fenugreek greens saute)

Aloo Methi
This is another hot favourite in the family, and I just love to mash a bit with rasam and slurp it up. I am afraid this uses a little more oil than the rest but it is worth it.
(Serves 2 adults and 2 kids – hoggers of course!)
Cut about 5 large potoates into medium sized cubes.
Clean a bunch of fresh methi leaves (fenugreek leaves) picking out the good leaves to get about 3 cups of leaves. Muddle the leaves with a tbsp. of salt and leave on a strainer for 5 minutes. Squeeze and drink the juice up or discard. Chop the squeezed leaves.
Heat 2 tbsp. of oil. Splutter a tsp. of jeera, 1/2 tsp. saunf, and 1tsp. ajwain. Add the potatoes and very little salt, turmeric and chilli powder. Stir fry till half done.  Now add the chopped methi leaves and stir fry for a minute.
Add 1/2 a tsp. of amchoor and again stir fry till the potatoes turn soft and the leaves coat the potatoes all over, and the water in the leaves dries up.  Amchoor being sour helps in reducing the bitterness of the leaves.
Adjust salt, chilli powder, and turmeric.
Serve hot with rasam, rice or just plain rotis.
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Have your say

  1. A loud applause for the review Aunty :). Am not surprised.

  2. making me hungry..versatile pictures

  3. Auntyji,Great that you came in paper.I read it,thanks for the link.But I agree with Rachel -not surprised- SunshineMom ke sunny rays -that too yellow coloured this time -hamesha sab jag jaate hain.
    BTW,naan ippo tan vareen,tiffin with aloo subzi micchum vecchukko-nahin to main auntyji se dadiji bana doongi or toi mein aayega-sunshine dadi ke yahan curryleaf cutie ka angry cloud cha gaya 😉
    oops Disclaimer again-purely fun purpose.
    Great to be reviewed dear,I too love your stories,sometimes I come back and read the stories again 😉

  4. BTW,15th ka kya plan,hai,Party kahan hain,Auntyji?

  5. why does she say aunty?? i am afraid i see no humour?!!? I singularly detest the word aunty – ive been around enough men who use it in a derogatory way 🙁 sadly! anyways lots of yummy yellows. ilike the padwal subzi and its made in a way ive never made so I willmake it. and aloo methi and rasam> you'll never cease to surprise me. and i noticed you add saunf to yours interesting I'll try it myselfnext time… but i find cleaning the methi and plucking out the leaves really annoying.

  6. Rachel, thanks:)

    Ann, am I? Come over, dear!!

    Sweatha, I guessed the reason should be that I keep saying long back – maybe that dates me too far, as in a fairy tale age:)! I have always loved saying stories and remember my aunties leaving their kids with me even when I was in high school. I could always engross them in my tales as they were accompanied with expressions and songs invented on the spur of the moment, so believe me – aunty or not, it is always a joy when you say you come back for the stories!! It means a lot, and I know that your compliment comes straight from your heart so it matters a lot! Though I may sound goody goody – my bosses will differ;). Jaago, Sweatha pyaari jaago….:) Abhi tak to kucch bheja hai nahi FIC mein – sirf comment hi hain!! Khana wana pakati bhi ho ki nahin…ya sirf cookies banati ho woh bhi sirf dekh sakti hoon – haath bhi nahin laga sakti! Tortuous:)! 15th pe aap hamaare virtual ghar me zaroor padhaarein! Thenga(Thumb) taiyaar rahega!! Ha ha:)

    Rajani, haan! Mujhe bhi nahin samajh mein aaya. Wahi dates ke wajah se honge:)! But it was a good review and I am lucky that way – it is a norm in India and many people get piqued if you do not address them as ‘auntyji’ and ‘uncleji’, so she must have taken that route! See – I refer to my neighbor as Aunty though she is only 10 yrs older than I am!!
    BTW, saunf in aloo methi, samosa filling etc tastes great – do try it!
    I agree about that – methi cleaning is tiresome, and I can’t tell my husband to do it because he feels it is simply plucking off the leaves! He does not look for those white thin lines that carry the worm! But the nutrition factor drives me to make it often during this season!

  7. trivial details I am sure as far as hubby is concerned!men! anyway, just wanted to mention cos I didnt earlier (i was so peeved with the aunty) – its great harini! the review is actually nice barring the ‘a’ word 🙂

  8. Who doesnt love potatoes! You have great list of potato dishes. The picture of Aloo methi is beautyful, what did you use for the textured background?

    Congrats on the Delhi Times mention!

  9. Congrats for the review. May be your description of yourself and stories might have made her address you Aunty. But little does the reviewer know that u can be easily identified with a teenager too.

    Loved this edition of yellow foods honoring potatoes.

  10. Rajani, you got back to say that!! Thank you so much, dear!

    VB, Thanks! I used a textured handmade paper as I have quite a few of them from making birthday cards and things!

    Jayasree, thanks:)!!

  11. wow,in the newspaper n all congrats girl, err.. Auntyji 🙂

  12. Applause Harini! But Aunty? 🙂 Yeah around the kids… I guess its assumed fact that if anyone is blogging about food, one has to be an experienced "Aunty". Other than that part, it was a great review so true..

    About all those dishes with Aloo (My hubby is from Rajasthan & he cannot live without aloo… is there a connectione here:-) ).. they look superb, But my fav. one is with parval. I love it & DONOT get it here. I could give up one of my fav. food to get a bite of that subzi.

  13. Congrats dear SM. The review is very correct. I did not know about this month’s event. I think the roasted chickpeas will qualify for yellow. Will send it.

    I also made a potato dish today, wish I had taken a picture. The recipe is here, it came out so well.

  14. I’m not sending the chickpeas SM, its not yellow in color. Will come up with something else.

  15. Congrats Aunty! Oops H…I always enjoyed ur write-up great job and keep it up!
    U re loading with carb delicious food! All combo are great!

  16. Mention in News Paper that is soo cool..Congrats..
    Nice homage to the ubiquitous potatoes. Reminds me of my hostel days. Our Mess Manager used to promise us on the day of our admission to feed us 4 truck loads of potatoes by the time we leave. I guess he more than fulfilled his promise!

  17. Harini, i was never fond of potatos to start with, but have started liking them eventually 🙂
    Nice set of recipes…they all look inviting 😉 I add potatos to a variety of curries too. Learnt this from a bihari cook i had few years back.

  18. wow..harini…lovely aloo dishes….No one can see a person saying no to aloo…..delicious

  19. wooohoo! Good for you Harini! Ans yes you are right, aloo goes with everything and in everything. In fact, growing up, that was the only thing I ate. Love the dish.

  20. Auntyji,mera wala yellow dish agale hafte aa jaayega,dekhte jao, dekhte jao,lemony cookies khake yellow ho jao.Oops I gave it out,lets see what all I can come up with.
    On a serious note,its a skill to tell stories.I always thought I too had atleast a little of that skill,but now I am facing some block.-I must admit,my posts are bland,well may be I may overcome it.But its the tales that make ‘tumyumtreats’ very fresh and tell you the truth,I am commenting without any block here only 😉
    PS I also agree with Rajani and her comment on men.Truly they are from MARS.I also agree on the ‘Aunty’ word, dadiji 😉

  21. Pavithra Kodical

    Hi I read the review..Good to know that you came in paper, Congrats!! Will try to participate in FIC yellow 🙂

  22. Hey Congrats! But aunty??? Why this assumption? I mean were not the beautiful names Harini / Sunshinemom visible? I positively detest that. The recipes sound awesome … and look great too. 🙂
    Lucky you … got parwal. 🙂

  23. Congratulations Harini! SunshineMom , way to go! Aunty to chalta hai;-)

  24. congrats dear, the aloo fest looks too good,definitely well deserved!

  25. Oye Sunshine aunty! 😀
    Congrats! You’re even more famous now. You must be so excited.

    I like potato anything.:)
    I made a chickpeas dish that I thought of sending across, before I realized it was not exactly yellow. Then I thought of playing around with it in photoshop to
    “make it” yellow. But I’ll be good now and try and send you something else (if time permits) coz I love the FIC series so! I especially wanted to participate in the purple edition.

  26. Congrats on the newspaper review, agree with the others they could have skipped the “A” reference, loved your post and your dish…as usual 🙂

  27. Thanks, bacchalog and ladies!! I am thrilled about it too:)

    Madhuram, I made something similar too with fresh rosemary and oregano. I too par boiled the potatoes and then let it go into the oven. Tastes great!! Mine was more brown and thanks for the link. It has some lovely recipes!

    Vibaas, Biharis are great cooks! Did your Bihari cook tell you about their achaari aloos – they taste great!

    Sweatha, Maybe you should get rid (brush, brush away) that block in your blog too. You rock anyway:) – so you are wrong when you say your writings are bland but I would love to hear you more like this on your blog! You sound funny and cool:)

    TBC hop aboard, girl! The ship is docked!

  28. Congratulations, Harini, and you deserve all those compliments so well!
    Also right said about aloo: it is certainly the most versatile of all veggies, and even the most hard-core veg haters can’t resist the mighty potato.
    This is such a lovely array of dishes.

  29. every recipe looks so awesome hey congrats yes but why aunty such abeautiful name you have Harini,yes if i dont have potatoes in hand i feel like some thing missing…..

  30. i loved going thru’ the comments! Almost forgot to leave one myself. I’ll keep this one short…great ode to the good ol’ potato! Sending something soon for FIC yellow.

  31. Hi Harini,Congrats on the review 🙂
    I too love to read ur stories!!and your potato dishs rock..will try them out..

  32. Hey Harini, congrats on the press mention!
    And you are so right about potatoes. I absolutely can not do without them and we have it frequently in one form or the other. I have to replenish the stock in my kitchen every 3/4 days 🙂

  33. Congratulations Harini. Like everyone’s been saying, I’m not surprised either. You have a way with words that I enjoy reading.

    I had a bit of a shock the first time I was called aunty – it was two days after I got married by a neighbour who herself had got married a month earlier! Long story so I won’t take up your comments space!! 🙂
    But it feels good to have company in the “a” club. 😀

    Potatoes rule here, alright.

  34. Can I send my Khichuri for this Yellow event or am I late ?


  35. Congrats…Lovely

  36. My reaction was v similar to Rajani’s – a frown, then indignant – thought I was over-reacting and went off to comment on another post of yours – then I came back and saw Rajani’s comment – I’ve been working up the courage to say “I’m not your Aunty” next time someone as big as me calls me Aunty!

  37. Oh, congrats on the mention, I sent the earlier comment off by mistake.

  38. Congrats on your press! Yay, are you excited?

  39. Congratulations dear.. 🙂 you really deserve it.. I love to come back to your blog .. your stories, the info that you give helps us a lot.. I love the way you write 🙂 Keep it up…
    So many dishes with potato..My hubby better not see this. He is a great fan of Potato’s. Well..So am I..After coming here that is the veggie that is most consumed.. We do not get many Indian subzi’s here . I am missing Parval and tindli!

  40. Hi
    Great to see ur blog …Variety of recipes…Keep posting …


  41. Congrats! Guess the journo dubs all mothers as Aunties! sigh…..The aloo recipes are amazing – thanks!

  42. Congrats for the review. Aloo looks too good and tempting.

  43. Atta girl! great to be reviewed!!

    And what a lovely spread…

    Happy New Year

  44. Oh ho….congrats dear,and wht a lovely spread….potatoes +anything=great,potatoes-anything also=great 🙂

    And hey girls u better stop teasing her over Aunty issue,coz u just need to meet her to know how young(at heart) this Aunty is….lolz

    And H,i can’t comment on french bread,since i never had the privilege to taste one but batar after breaking turn into crumbs as rusk,and get soggy and spongy almost immediately when u pour chutney over it
    Yes u shud without fail visit once here,but don’t expect bland food here,coz the street food here is amazingly spicy(gelusil handy rakhna)

  45. Hey Alka!! Dara diya tumne sabko!! Thank you:) I will find out at the local bakery – ab to taste karna hi padega, aur UN to aana hi hai!

  46. yes Harini i too love those Iyengar bakery buns but after i came here to Abudhabi I miss them alot specialy those aloo buns and masala buns mmmm and when i lern dough making in my baking classes first i tried these thanks for your sweet comment

  47. NIce saying! I could definitely have potatoes at least once a day and never get tired of it 🙂

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