Kashmiri Pandits make such delicious, rich, luxurious food, all without the 2 ingredients that seem to be key in most of India’s richer dishes – Onions and Garlic. Even meat dishes are fragrant, succulent, delicious and most of all, surprising!
Here’s a recipe for Kashmiri Dum Aloo shared with us during a sumptuous meal prepared by an elegant Kashmiri lady in Delhi. Mrs. Neeraj Warikoo, with her delicately lovely features and even more delicate way of speaking, spent a whole afternoon with us, feeding us a meal that left us speechless and wide eyed with wonder. And during the meal, woven together with wonderful stories of her girlhood in Kashmir, were these special recipes that we are so excited to share here.
Kashmiri Dum Aloo
8 Potatoes, medium (2 potatoes per person)
250 ml Mustard Oil
1 tsp Sugar
1 cup Yogurt
1 tsp Kashmiri Chili Powder
2 1/2 tsp Ground Fennel (Saunf)
1 1/2 tsp Ginger Powder (Saunth)
2 Black Cardamom
2 Green Cardamom
1 Cinnamon stick, small
1 cup Water
Salt to taste
Was the potatoes and place them in a pressure cooker with enough water to cover the potatoes and a little more. Cook for 3 whistles (10 minutes or so) and set aside. If you prefer, you could do this in a pot of water, submerge the potatoes, cover and boil for 15 minutes on a medium heat. Prick to test for tenderness. Peel the potatoes.
Heat the mustard oil in a pan till it starts to smoke. Add the potatoes, turn down the heat and cook. Add 1 – 2 tablespoon of water and sprinkle some salt. Fry till the potatoes are a dark golden brown.
In another pan, use a little of the mustard oil used to fry the potatoes, heat it and add a pinch of Hing and allow it to cook till it burns. Add the spoonful of sugar and let that cook and darken. Once the sugar has caramalised, turn the heat off and let it cool. While the sugar cools, In a bowl, beat the yogurt till smooth. Separately, pound the whole spices together.
Turn the heat back on and on a very low flame, add the Kashmiri chili powder, stir and then slowly add the yogurt as well. Add the fennel and ginger powders and salt to taste. Stir together. Add the crushed whole spices and stir in. Add a cup of water and the fried potatoes. Cover tightly and cook for 10 – 15 minutes.