Monday, March 15, 2010

Hostelite's aloo

Remember when you were a hostelite and you were SO sick of the canteen food you actually turned to maggi? You had one pathetic little pan in your tiny hostel room, in which you made the maggi and you chomped on it as you watched sitcoms off the shared computers on the network? And then you discovered frozen parathas and wished there was something else to go with them other than yoghurt or the achar you got from home before you started hitting Mustafa?

No?

Okay, if you're one of those hostelites who started making biryani in the first year itself, get out of my bar. Now. NOW.

This post is for people like me. People who never stepped into the kitchen when they were at home, and had to leave the country and go live by themselves and slowly start learning the fine art of cooking. By starting from scratch.

And Hostelite's Aloo (HA) is one of the critical steps to help you get there. It is incredibly easy to make, it needs very simple ingredients, it's very tasty, and it's such a great accompaniment that it helps pave the way for you to start making chapatis and parathas yourself. And most of the time, it is a success so it gives you the most critical ingredient in your culinary journey -- confidence.

This recipe for HA is dedicated to all you freshies out there, who would like to graduate from maggi.

Ingredients
Potatoes - 2 medium, cut into thin strips
Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
Oil - 1 tablespoon
Onion (optional) - 1 small, thinly sliced
Turmeric power - 1/2 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Dried red chillies (optional) - 5

Method
1. Heat the oil, and add the dried red chillies and mustard seeds. Wait till the mustard seeds have finished sputtering.
2. Add the onion and sauté till they become translucent.
3. Add the potatoes, turmeric powder and salt. Mix well.
4. Reduce the flame to very low, and cover the container. (This dish can be successfully made even in a non non-stick pan, provided you really keep the flame low.)
5. After 5 minutes, use a spatula to toss the potato strips well to make sure they are getting evenly cooked, and are not sticking to the bottom. Cover again.
6. Once the potato strips can be easily cut with the spatula, turn off the flame.
7. Serve with rice, chapatis or parathas.




30 comments:

nits said...

gold... :P

t said...

/* Add the onion and sauce till they become translucent. */

You mean sauté...?

Arun said...

Bronze. :)

Am regularly making variants of the Thai curry - the previous recipe you posted :)

Sayesha said...

#nits,
That's all? Waaaa :'(

#t,
Yikes! Yes yes, sauté it is! Thanks for pointing out! Have corrected it. :)

#Arun,
Ooh great! Share some of the variations! :)

nits said...

hey bhai... saw that i am gonna get gold for the first time... grabbed it.. and went to eating... i mean reading the post... tabhi mera boss aa gaya...

waise... muh me pani aa gaya...

bluejay said...

wohoo.. Silver!!!.. nobody did say silver :P

Bhai...! I've always hated to cook for myself..and my sis has to threaten me over the phone (from the US!) to do anything near the stove.. and this particular recipe has a special place in my heart!.. least effort..and awesome taste!! Thankuuu!!

Technofun said...

Yup..I still remember those days..Well my first dish was Veg pulav..simple dish..add rice water ,some masala..onion,potato.. in cooker..2 whistles and its done :)

crapcorn said...

hi..ve been following ur blog for few months from now..must say it s a real mood lifter..felt this was the perfect post for me to comment as i recently finished my PG and terribly miss being a hostelite!!!As i m familiar with ur blog's jargons:) shld say GOLD!
Cheers!

~ Lopa said...

aaahhh missing my hostel days now :(

How do we know said...

wow!!! i soooo remember this alu sabzi!

Stone said...

my kind of stuff...just replace rai with jeera :-)

Swathy said...

yummy yumm...i add little more chilli powder instead of turmeric..
love the red!!
Hum sub ek hi chakke ke pise hue aate hey![:)]
from maggi to eggs to potato to simple dal...
I remember trying to cook maggi with a phata purana stove, that too 8 packets of it..
we spent almost 3 hours cooking it![ we were 10 of us..sorry 10 'hungry' of us]

Swathy said...

yummy yumm...i add little more chilli powder instead of turmeric..
love the red!!
Hum sub ek hi chakke ke pise hue aate hey![:)]
from maggi to eggs to potato to simple dal...
I remember trying to cook maggi with a phata purana stove, that too 8 packets of it..
we spent almost 3 hours cooking it![ we were 10 of us..sorry 10 'hungry' of us]

Swathy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Aathira said...

Hostel days and hostel mess food!
We used to get Aloo Palak for dinner every time our lawns got mowed... time for maggi dinner!! :P

gugun said...

"Serve with rice, chapatis or parathas"

Your readers wouldnt know it tastes best with pakhaala, would they ! :P


Inspirational post. Very inspirational. Esp when one was looking with distaste at another packaged abomination falsely labelled as palak paneer. Even at 11 pm, you made me see the light. amen.

Dil se said...

This so takes me back to the good old hostel days, when I started realising the value of home cooked food !!and that little heater came to rescue whenever mess had the "uckiest" food !!
So love this recipe . I can still smell the aroma tingling :-)

...non periodic oscillations... said...

don't think i'll ever do any of this! cooking is just not my "cup of tea"! but hey! i love ppl who love to cook...!

aj said...

aah..memories...

i had a punjabi friend who you used to say "aloo kutta aur sardar duniya mein kahin milte hain"

if not for aloo and egg (omelette or burji) I don't know what I would have done when I had to cook and eat something before I faint bcos of hunger.

Sumana said...

Could totally relate to "Remember when you were a hostelite and you were SO sick of the canteen food you actually turned to maggi"

When I think about college hostel the first thing that somehow always comes to my mind is Maggi.

I ate enuf for a lifetime during those years ...

Bivas said...

good old alloo bhaja... :D

serve hot with nice parathas and as gugun so well put it...
with Pakhala! and saag...
Yum...summer's coming soon...

Sanchit said...

u know, am totally makign it this weekend... slurp

Sanchit said...

subscribing...

Angelsera said...

"Remember when you were a hostelite and you were SO sick of the canteen food you actually turned to maggi? "

Hahahahaha..soo true!!
I used to go home during weekends, jus to pack some of mom's food

I duno how u guys managed!!

Sayesha said...

#nits,
Try to make it, it's really simple and yummy. :)

#bluejay,
You're welcome. :D

#Technofun,
Your first dish was VEG PULAO? Get out of my bar. Now! :|

#crapcorn,
Welcome and thanks. :)

#~Lopa,
Me too, some parts of it though. :)

#How do we know,
:)

#Stone,
Ah, you can make it with jeera instead of rai? I should try that some time! :)

#Swathy,
//Hum sub ek hi chakke ke pise hue aate hey![:)]

LOL! :D
PS: 8 packets of maggi?? :O

#Aathira,
//We used to get Aloo Palak for dinner every time our lawns got mowed

ROFLMAO!!!! :D

#gugun,
Oh yes, that too. I've never tried making it though. I always make this with parathas or flavoured rice. :)

#Dil se,
:)

#...non periodic oscillations...,
Haha! :D

#aj,
//"aloo kutta aur sardar duniya mein kahin milte hain"

:D :D :D

#Sumana,
It's the same all over the world yeah? :)

#Bivas,
Hahaha! Are you going home soon? Heard the heat is scorching!

#Sanchit,
Banaya? Kaisa bana?? :)

#Angelsera,
Hahaha! Actually, canteen 3 wasn't too bad. :) I was very sick of canteen A and canteen 1 thought. :|

Sanchit said...

nahin bhai... am at home since last 2 weekends, and mom doesnt let me experiment :( :( :(

N said...

I think this sabzi is everyone's first tried and tested sabzi. There is absolutely nothing which can go wrong with it...when in doubt what to make, it comes to our rescue :)

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