Friday, February 27, 2009

Ragda Patties

Though I say I dont like to cook that is not exactly true, I only hate cooking the ordinary stuff dal-chawal, chapatti-bhaji, etc. Tonight as I looked into my fridge and saw a mundane pumpkin and some veg kofta balls I had made in bulk and frozen weeks earlier I knew instinctively what I would end up picking for dinner.

The problem was what to make with them, I have been experimenting with malai kofta recipes and have yet to find a decent one, but I would have to make chapattis too, more work than I was in the mood for. Or I could make a re-imagined Veg balls in hot garlic sauce with fried rice. But, we are on a diet and B will NOT eat rice at night.

And then I hit upon the perfect solution, why not fry them up as cutlets and make my favorite chaat - Ragda Patties. As you might have figured by now, our diet plan is highly selective, even before I put the question to B I knew he would be heartily endorsing shallow fried potatoes for dinner.

The recipe I have for this mouth-watering chaat is amazingly simple, made even simpler since I had a lot of the fixings on hand - I always keep a jar of tamarind-date chutney in my pantry and of course I had the koftas. Squashing the koftas didnt make for very pretty cutlets but they were going to be coverd with the ragda anyway. Because I had made them earlier they had peas, cashews etc in them but for the actual recipe I like to keep the potato cutlets very simple, just like you get on the roadside in Mumbai. The whole thing should take about an hour, less if you are more organized than me.

Ragda Patties

For the Patties: (Should make appox 8 large cutlets)
Potatoes - 3/4 large sized, turmeric and salt.

For the ragda:
Dried White Peas - 1 and a half cups (I use teacups of 125 ml), 1/2 tsp. baking soda
Grind to a paste - 3/4 green chillies, 3/4 large cloves of garlic, 1" ginger, 2 tsp coriander seeds, 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, 1/4 tsp shah jeera seeds, 7-8 pepper corns, 2-3 dried red chillies, 3-4 pieces cinnamon, 4 cloves.

For garnish:
Chop finely 1 small onion, mix with finely chopped coriander leaves and keep aside.
Tamarind-Date chutney (plain tamarind will do too)
Coriander, Cumin, Pepper and Red chilli Powders.

For the patties: Boil and grate the potatoes (you could mash them too but I like the consistency of grated better). Mix turmeric and salt to taste, shape into cutlets and shallow fry them. If desired, some boiled peas from the next step can be stuffed into the center of the cutlets.

For the ragda: Soak the peas overnight, then boil them with the baking soda in a pressure cooker (if you dont soak the peas beforehand, you will have to cook them longer) and keep aside. In a kadai, heat some oil, add the ground masala paste and fry for a little time, add the peas, salt and let boil until desired thickness is reached.

Assemble the chaat:
Place the cutlets in a plate, pour the ragda on top, add onion+coriander, the tamarind chutney and sprinkle with all the four powders.

Enjoy :D