Thursday, June 10, 2010
Aloo-r Chop or say Potato Chops – Something Different with Muri Crumbs
Aloo (potatoes) is liked by every one – Big or Small, Young or Old – all love the taste of potatoes. At times when there are totally no vegetables at home except a few potatoes lying in the basket, nothing to worry. That was what happened with me the other day. With some potatoes at home I was in no mood to cook neither Aloo- dum nor Aloo posto (potatoes cooked with poppy seeds) and I also thought only Aloo bhate (mashed boiled potatoes spiced up with few drops of mustard oil, chopped onions and chopped green coriander) would not solve my problem.
I cooked Dal, Bhat (rice), Aamer chutney (mango chutney), Aloo bhate and then made up my mind to make some Aloo chops, and serve them hot and sizzling for lunch-time.
With my domestic help ‘Absent without Information’, I was facing Trouble and Problem who were trying to make life pathetic for me. I knew both Trouble and Problem were glad to make my life a Hell. I could have easily ordered some food from our neighbourhood Restaurant. But I was not at all willing to submit before the TWO (Trouble and Problem) trouble-makers of my life.
I said, ‘Get, Set and Go’, and then everything began to fall into place. By lunch-time food was ready...a simple meal but everyone enjoyed the home-made food.
I boiled 5 big size potatoes. After peeling off the skin, mashed them using my hand and fingers...that’s how I like to do in my kitchen. Kept some mashed potatoes for Aloo-bhate. With the rest of the mashed potatoes I began working with it.
To the mashed potatoes added...
½ tsp Haldi and ¼ tsp red chilli powder. Then added the salt to taste and some sugar (sugar is optional). Mixed all the spices with the mashed potatoes and kept it for the next process.
Heated 1 tbsp oil in a wok. Put in the mashed potatoes taking care that the potatoes got cooked correctly to get the pinkish touch. Switched off the flame and transferred the contents onto a plate to let it cool.
Once it cooled down, broke up into small quantities that could fit into a fist and slowly gave the chops its final shape.
In the meantime placed my regular frying kadhai (I use an iron kadhai for deep frying as the heat is equally distributed in it) and poured enough refined groundnut oil to deep fry the chops. Placed it on slow burning fire for the oil to warm up slowly.
I had no bread crumbs. My Ma never panicked when she didn’t have bread crumbs. There was always a stock of Muri (puffed rice or murmure) at home. She made a coarse powder of the Muri as a bread crumb substitute. So I took some Muri and the dry grinder did the rest of the work. Spread my coarse Muri-crumb on a plate.
Subsequently made a thin batter of maida and water. You can use a thin besan (chick pea flour) batter, I used maida as my besan jar was empty. Dipped in the aloo chops one by one into the maida batter and then rolled it over the Muri-crumbs and sent them into the oil to come out brown and crunchy.
Once it was done, all of us enjoyed our meal.
These chops can also be served as a tea-time snack...serve with tomato sauce or some home-made chutney. You can also relish this with Tel-muri. For Tel-muri, take some puffed rice (Muri) in a bowl. To this add few drops of mustard oil and salt (to taste), some finely chopped onion, mix well and enjoy the Muri Feast...bite into the chop along with every fill of muri that goes into the mouth.