Aloo tikki – potato fritters with sizzled tomatoes

Potato fritters with sizzled tomatoes: a staple of any street-food vendor in northern India and a must-have whenever you’re walking around the streets of Old Delhi in winter

Potato fritters with sizzled tomatoes: a staple of any street-food vendor in northern India and a must-have whenever you’re walking around the streets of Old Delhi in winter

Sat, Oct 25, 2014, 01:00

   
  • Makes: 8
  • Cooking Time: 50 mins
  • Course: Starter
  • Cuisine: Indian

Ingredients

  • MAKES EIGHT PATTIES
  • 500g (1lb 2 oz) floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper, peeled
  • 3-4 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 150g (5½oz) onion, diced
  • 30g (1oz) fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 2 green chillies, deseeded and finely chopped (use less if you don’t want it too hot)
  • 3 tsp garam masala blend
  • 1 tsp powdered turmeric
  • 2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 handful mint leaves, torn or chopped
  • 1 small handful coriander leaves, chopped
  • FOR THE SIZZLED TOMATOES
  • 3 tbsp olive oil, plus a little extra
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 400g (14oz) tin whole plum tomatoes, drained
  • 1 pinch finely ground black pepper
  • Sea salt

Method

My dad often used to make us fried potato cakes when Mum was out. They’re a staple of any street-food vendor in northern India and a must-have whenever you’re walking around the streets of Old Delhi in winter. This is my version – simple, effective and totally delicious. If you have a splash guard, then I’d recommend using it here, because the tomato sauce really spits. A bit messy, I grant you, but essential for the finished dish, so don’t be tempted to turn down the heat – but do be careful not to burn it.

1. Put the potatoes in a saucepan and cover generously with water. Bring to the boil and boil for 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and lightly mash. Set aside.

2. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a heavy-based frying pan or sauté pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and fry gently for three minutes, then add the ginger and continue cooking until the onion is soft.

3. Add the chillies, the garam masala, turmeric, mustard seeds and salt. Stir and cook for two minutes more, then turn off the heat, set aside and allow to cool to tepid.

4. Add the herbs and mashed potato and mix thoroughly. Divide the potato mix into eight mounds, then form them into evenly sized balls.

5. Add a little more oil to the frying pan over a medium heat. When hot, add three or four balls. Gently press them down into flat but chunky patties and cook for about 10 minutes until light brown on each side. Repeat until you have cooked all the potato fritters. Serve immediately with sizzled tomatoes.

To make the sizzled tomatoes, put a large saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the olive oil and garlic slices and cook for a few minutes to soften without browning. Add the tomatoes, pepper and salt to taste, then turn up the heat and cook fiercely, stirring to make sure it doesn’t burn. The tomatoes will release all of their juices. When all the thin liquid has evaporated, add a splash more olive oil, adjust the seasoning and serve hot.