Dum Aloo, also known as Aloo Dum Pukht, is a favored Indian Curry recipe that you often get to see on many restaurant menus, and this home-made Shahi variation is nothing less! Who doesn't like potatoes? especially when they are baby potatoes simmered in creamy & aromatic gravy made with almonds and cashews and flavored with traditional Indian spices! What makes this recipe different and special is the choice of onions, yogurt, tamarind, almonds and cashews as a base for the gravy. With aromatic spices like cardamom, fennel, ginger, and addition of some milk and cream to add a richness to the recipe, the resulting Shahi Dum Aloo was a wonderful treat for our family. B actually liked it better than the Malai Koftas, which means I actually scored a victory with this make-as-you-go recipe venture!
8-10 baby potatoes
3 tbsp tomato puree
1 mid-size onion
4 tbsp yogurt (plain, not sour)
2 tsp tamarind paste
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
3 tbsps almond-cashewnut paste
** soak the nuts in water, then remove skin and blend to a paste
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp dhania powder (dry coriander powder)
1/2 tsp kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
2 tsp garam masala powder
1/4 tsp fennel powder (saunf)
1/4 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 tsp dry ginger powder
1 bay leaf
salt and lemon juice - to taste
2 tbsp oil
3 tbsp fresh cream
fresh coriander - chopped for garnish
Skin the onions and blanch them in hot water for 3 mins, then puree them to form a paste. Make a paste from the blanched almonds and cashews and keep aside.
Take 2 tbsp yogurt, add the tamarind paste, fennel powder, red-chilli powder, ginger powder, cardamom powder and sugar to it, and beat it well to form a smooth blend. Keep aside.
Boil the potatoes in a microwave or a pressure-cooker, taking care not to over-cook them. Just microwave till tender, but not mashable. Take a toothpick, and poke some holes into the baby potatoes, then keep aside.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a pan, add the bay leaf and the cloves, then add the onion paste and saute till light-brown. Add ginger-garlic paste. Saute for 3 minutes. Add all the dry spices (masalas) and roast for anther 2 mins. Finally add the almond-cashew paste and roast for another 5 mins.
Add the tomato puree, the yogurt-tamaring blend, crushed kasuri methi, and salt. Stir and let it simmer for some time. Then cover with a lid, and let it cook on medium flame for another 10 mins, till the curry becomes think and everything blends well to form a smooth texture.
Add the baby potatoes, lower the flame, and and simmer for 4-5 minutes. Add 2 tbsp milk or whipping cream, and allow the potatoes to be cooked entirely. They will also suck up some of the flavor from the curry and spices, thanks to the holes you poked them with!
Garnish with coriander leaves and fresh cream if you like. Throw some more chopped nuts and raisins on the top. Serve the delicious Shahi Dum Aloo with any bread of your choice, pulao or simply jeera rice.
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