Rekha’s ‘Smashed Potatoes’
This recipe is a speciality of Rekha, one of the older girls at Baale Mane. She is a wonderful cook, and helps out in the kitchen regularly, cooking for her younger sisters. Rekha gets asked to make this at least once a week, it is so delicious!
Serves 3 as a main course, or 5 with side dishes.
- 300 gms potatoes
- 2-4 tbsp oil
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- ½ tsp toor dal (split pigeon pea)
- ½ tsp urad dal (dehusked and split black gram lentil)
- 4 small green chillies, finely chopped
- 3 medium red onions, sliced
- 3 large tomatoes, finely chopped
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- A few curry leaves
- Salt, to taste
- Paprika, optional
- A scatter of coriander leaves
Smashed potatoes are Rekha’s take on the middle part of the famed South Indian Masala Dosa. Traditionally, the dosa is wrapped around the filling, and the whole thing is eaten with your hands.
Peel the potatoes, chop into bite-sized chunks and tip into a pot of cool water. Add a little salt and bring to the boil, until the potatoes are cooked through.
Drain the potatoes and gently smash them with the back of a wooden spoon. The potatoes should be about halfway between a lump-free mash and shapely chunks.
Gently heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Once it is quite hot, add the mustard seeds and lentils. In about a minute the lentils will start browning. Now add the chillies and onion, and sauté on low heat till the onions turn translucent.
Add the tomatoes and turmeric, and mix well. Let it cook till the tomatoes have broken down into a pulp, and the oil starts separating around the edges.
Add the smashed potato mixture to the pan with some salt and a pinch of paprika if it needs more heat. Keep stirring on a low heat until the ingredients are properly combined. You may need to add a little water if the mixture becomes too dry or stiff.
Stir in some chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with dosas, puri or rotis, along with sambhar or chutney.