Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Indian Food: Podimas

Have you ever encountered a food more wonderful and versatile than the potato? Forget odes to sunshine and flowers - someone should write an ode to the Russet Potato. Mashed, fried, baked, in stews, in hash browns, and every time it's wonderful.

So here I am, giving you fellow potato-lovers a new potato dish to add to your repertoire. I love it because a) it's Indian and I LOVE Indian food b) it's cheap, and cheap is always better for the starving student and c) it's quick, so I don't have to wait eons for a good dinner when I get home late.

This dish is called Podimas, and it is basically mashed potatoes (sans the milk and butter) with Indian spices. When you eat it with Chapati, a type of Indian bread, it's doubly delicious (I just use a tortilla instead).


Serves 4

2 large Russet Potatoes
1 teaspoon Turmeric
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1/2 small onion, diced
2 Green Chilies, chopped (optional)
1/4 teaspoon Mustard Seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1/2 teaspoon Sambar Podi (Powder) (optional)

1. Cube potatoes and put into a large saucepan. Cover with water. Add Turmeric powder and put on stove for 20 minutes, until potatoes are soft.
2. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add mustard seeds (they should sound like they are "popping"), diced onions, and green chilies. Sauté until onions are translucent.
3. When potatoes are soft, drain water. Mash potatoes until the have an even consistency (they will appear slightly yellow).
4. Add mashed potatoes to the onion mixture in the frying pan. Add salt and Sambar Podi. Stir until all ingredients are well combined. Reduce heat and cook for 5 minutes.

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