Aloo Palak Paratha is a carb in carb comfort food with a good dose of fresh spinach in between. Aloo Paratha is a popular Indian stuffed bread recipe that is prepared with whole wheat. I like to add some greens to it, sometimes kale and sometimes spinach. Often served with yogurt on the side, a dollop of butter and some pickle, Aloo Paratha makes for a great meal. It is also sometimes served as weekend breakfast with a cup of piping hot masala chai.
There was a time when making aloo paratha was a daunting task for me. It would end up being a complete mess as the potatoes would burst out when rolling the paratha and my attempt to impress my husband would fly out of the window. It took me a while to get it right and now, I make it more often than you can imagine.
A good stuffed paratha should have cooked through flaky golden brown exterior with evenly spread filling.
Although it’s a fairly simple dish to prepare but for someone who is not used to making aloo palak paratha, it can sound a little intimidating. Just follow all the tips and tricks that I mentioned below and trust me, you will do great!
What kind of potatoes to use when making Aloo Palak Paratha?
In India, you don’t see a lot of potato varieties and so, whatever you get in the market works fine. Here in US, you will find several varieties in the market, and I felt that the white potatoes work best for aloo paratha.
Should you boil or steam the potatoes?
I personally prefer to steam the potatoes as it softens beautifully without all the additional water content. It also easy to peel and the mashed potato texture turns out perfect for stuffing.
How do I make the Aloo Palak Paratha?
I stir-fry a little onion with garlic, ginger and cumin powder. Once the onion is softened, I add the finely chopped spinach and cook for a couple of minutes. Once it’s all cooked through, I add it to the mashed potato along with dry mango powder and give it a good mix. Taste for salt and add any, if needed. I like to add finely chopped green chili for us grown ups and avoid it for the kid. It’s very important to let the stuffing cool down completely before making the stuffed paratha.
I use whole wheat and flavor it with salt and carom seeds. Little amount of oil is added while making the dough to make it more pliable.
Another way to making this Aloo Palak Paratha
You could also mix the spinach to the dough, which will make the paratha look beautiful green. As for the stuffing, just add spiced mashed potatoes.
Stuffing and rolling the Aloo Palak Paratha:
Divide the dough and the stuffing into equal portions. You don’t want to over stuff the dough because it will be tough to roll. You also don’t want less filling, or it will taste bland.
One trick is to sprinkle little flour on the filling before sealing. It helps to seal without getting too sticky.
When you roll the paratha, flour the rolling pin and the board nicely. Make sure to roll with gently pressure. If you press too hard, the filling will burst out. Make sure you rotate as you roll for even thickness.
Making the paratha:
I occasionally like to fry the paratha in ghee on days when I want to indulge. Most days, I do use just oil. You want the skillet (preferably cast iron) to be medium hot. You will need about 2 teaspoons of oil (1 teaspoon on each side) for 1 paratha. Keep flipping and gently pressing as you cook the paratha for even golden crust.
Sometimes with luck, you will realize that the paratha will puff up (like phulka or pita bread) and I scream with joy whenever that happens.
We Indians make stuffed paratha with different varieties of vegetables and lentils, but aloo paratha seems to be everybody’s favorite even if potato is not their favorite vegetable.
Pair the paratha with these Indian pickles
And perfectly thick homemade yogurt – watch the VIDEO
For the filling:
- 2 medium size white potatoes
- 1 tablespoon oil
- ½ of 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
- 1 and ½ cups finely chopped spinach
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger and garlic
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 to 2 green chilies, finely chopped (optional)
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon dry mango powder, aamchur
For the dough
- 1 and ½ cups whole-wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon carom seeds
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon oil
- hot water as needed to make a soft dough
- Steam the potatoes with the skin on. Once it’s cooled down completely, peel the skin off and mash it.
- To prepare the filling, bring a skillet to medium heat and pour the oil. Once it heats up, add the ginger garlic and stir it around.
- Then, add the onion along with salt and stir it for 1 minute.
- Add the spinach along with the cumin seeds and stir it around for 1 minute.
- Add this mixture to the mashed potato along with dry mango powder and mix it around. Taste for salt and add more, if needed. It’s optional but I like to add finely chopped green chili for us grown ups and avoid it for the kid.
- While the mixture cools down, prepare the dough.
- In a mixing bowl, add the flour, carom seeds and salt. Give it a mix. Add warm water, little by little, to form a soft dough. Finally, pour the oil and give it one last knead. Cover the dough and let it rest for 15 minutes.
- To prepare the paratha, divide the dough into 6 portions and divide the filling into 6 portions too.
- Shape the dough portion into a disc. Using your hand, press and stretch the dough disc. Keep rotating as you stretch it to form a tiny flat bread. Remember to keep it thin at the edges as you stretch the dough. You need to do that just to make sure that there is enough space for the stuffing to go in (you could also do the same using a rolling pin).
- Place a portion of the stuffing in the center, sprinkle little flour on top and pinch all the sides to cover the filling completely. Using both your hands, gently form a ball and press it to form a disc once again. Continue doing the same for the rest of the dough.
- Place a skillet at medium heat and as the skillet heats up, roll the paratha. For perfect rolling, sprinkle little flour on the board and your rub some on your rolling pin. Then, press the disc gently and start rolling from the center to the outwards in gentle stroke. Rotate as you roll and make sure you roll it out evenly. Sprinkle flour if it gets sticky while you roll.
- Pour 1 teaspoon oil on the skillet and place the rolled paratha on the medium hot skillet. Press it gently all around and let it cook for 1 minute. Then, pour 1 teaspoon oil on top and flip. Continue cooking for 1 minute. Depending on the size of the paratha, you might have to flip and back and forth for perfect golden-brown crust on both the sides.
- Once done, continue rolling and frying rest of the paratha.
- Paratha taste bests when served warm.