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  • Aloo Tikki
    Spicy Potato Patties

    TOOLS: You’ll need a large mixing bowl, a potato masher, an 8-inch / 20-cm sauté pan, 2 baking sheets, a 10-inch / 25-cm frying pan, and a spatula.

    Spicy potato patties make a great sandwich in a nation where about 30 percent of the population is vegetarian. These patties are sold everywhere—on the street, in trains, and in movie theaters. In some recipes, the potatoes are mashed together with white bread, but I prefer to make them this way and let the potatoes shine.

    • 3 large russet potatoes, boiled, drained, and peeled (1½ pounds / 680 g)
    • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, plus more for greasing
    • 1 heaping teaspoon cumin seeds
    • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
    • 1 medium red or yellow onion, minced, divided
    • 2 teaspoons plus 1 pinch salt, divided
    • 1 (1-inch / 3-cm) piece ginger, peeled and grated (1 tablespoon)
    • 2–3 fresh Thai, serrano, or cayenne chiles, stems removed and minced
    • ⅔ cup /90 g frozen peas, defrosted
    • 1 heaping teaspoon ground coriander
    • 1 heaping teaspoon Garam Masala
    • 1 teaspoon red chile powder or cayenne pepper
    • 1 teaspoon amchur (dried mango powder)
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • 1 heaping tablespoon besan (gram or chickpea flour)
    • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    1. Place the potatoes in a large mixing bowl and mash them until there are no lumps. You’ll end up with about 4 cups / 950 mL of mashed potatoes. Set aside.
    2. In an 8-inch / 20-cm sauté pan over medium–high heat, warm the oil. Add the cumin seeds and turmeric and cook for 30 seconds, until the seeds sizzle. Add ⅔ cup / 110 g of the onion and the pinch of salt and cook, stirring constantly to avoid sticking, for 2 minutes.
    3. Add the ginger and fresh chiles to the sauté pan and cook for 1 minute. Add the peas and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat. Add the contents of the sauté pan to the bowl containing the potatoes.
    4. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons of salt, the coriander, the Garam Masala, the red chile powder, the amchur, the besan, and the remaining onion to the mixing bowl and stir well, ideally with your hands or the back of a fork, until combined. Add the lemon juice and stir again until well combined.
    5. Using your hands, shape ¼ cup / 60 mL of the mixture into a flat, 2½-inch / 6-cm patty and place the patty on a baking sheet (you’ll probably need 2). Continue until you have used all of the mixture and have all the patties in a single layer on the baking sheets; you should have 15 to 17 patties.
    6. Lightly grease a 10-inch / 25-cm or larger frying pan and warm it over medium–high heat. Carefully place 4 to 5 patties in the pan. Be careful not to overcrowd them or they will be tougher to flip. Cook for 3 minutes on each side, until browned on both sides. Yes, you will be tempted to turn them over right away, but trust me—give them time to brown and caramelize. Once they move easily rather than stick to the pan, they are ready to be flipped. Just reduce the heat a little if you need to. You don’t want them to burn. Remove from the heat.
    7. Remove the patties with a spatula and transfer to a baking sheet lined with a paper towel to absorb the extra oil.
    8. Repeat Steps 6 and 7 until you have finished frying all the patties. Remove from the heat.
    9. Transfer to a serving platter and serve with a side of Pudina ki and/or Imlee ki Chutney.

Indian For Everyone by Anupy Singla. Copyright © 2014 Anupy Singla. Published by Agate Publishing. All rights reserved.

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