Rustic bite size potatoes swimming in spiced vibrant tomato gravy, served with flaky poori, provides the perfect morning pleasure. I have a few weekend breakfast favorites and Aloo Tamatar Sabzi with poori tops the list. It’s a simple comfort stew that is loved by every Indian that I know. Every family has their own version of this sabzi and I am sure they all taste equally good.
Growing up when we had school vacations, we used to travel to Kolkata from Shillong by train. I so miss those train rides! Gazing out the window watching those paddy fields, the bunk beds that we would non-stop climb and then, those vendors who kept coming with snacks to munch all day long. Out of all the dishes that I would eat in that long journey, Poori Sabzi was always the one that we looked forward to. There were a few railway stations that were known for this humble specialty. As soon as the train stopped on the station, Baba would climb down in a rush and get us four plates of poori sabzi, piping hot and freshly prepared! There was something about that particular dish that even someone like me, who was not much into food back then, couldn’t resist.
What is Aloo Tamatar Sabzi?
It’s a rustic potato stew in tomato based gravy. It’s a comfort food often served for breakfast. There are probably 4 to 5 varieties of aloo sabzi that I love and I am pretty sure sooner or later, all of those dishes will show up here. Not sure why I held up this long to share these simple dishes. Now, this particular version of aloo tamatar sabzi is North Indian style and my Mom never made this version. I would make this stew very often for weekend breakfast and Arvind would always comment saying something is missing. So, it actually took me a while to get the taste right. I finally learnt these tips from my friend Prerna.
Key tips you need to follow:
- The ratio of tomato and potato should be equal for the perfect balance.
- You don’t want to cut the boiled potatoes in perfect neat bites. Make it rustic, uneven and break it apart with hands.
- You want to cook down the tomatoes completely before adding the potato cubes.
A few fresh cilantros and a squeeze of lemon juice at the end bring this entire curry together, beautifully balanced in flavor. Paired with poori, it’s a hearty meal for anytime during the day!
- 14.75 oz/ 418 g potatoes
- 14.80 oz/ 420 g tomatoes
- 4.10 oz/ 116 g onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1- inch ginger
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin powder
- ½ teaspoon coriander powder
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon sugar
- 1 and ½ cup water
- fresh cilantro leaves for garnish.
- Place a pot filled with water on high heat. Once it’s starts to boil, add 1 teaspoon salt and drop the potatoes without cutting or peeling. Let it boil for about 15 to 20 minutes or until they’re fork tender. Drain and let it cool down enough for easy handling. Once it’s cool, peel the boiled potatoes and break apart with hand or knife into rustic bite sizes.
- Peel the onion and finely chop it. Also, finely chop the tomatoes. Either pound or grate the ginger and garlic.
- Place a heavy bottom pan at medium heat and pour the oil. Then, add the whole spices (cumin seeds, fennel seeds and bay leaf). Stir for a few seconds and drop the garlic, ginger and onion. Add the rest of the salt and turmeric. Stir and cook for 2 minutes.
- Drop the tomatoes and mix it all around. Add all the ground spices (cumin, coriander, chili) and sugar. Mix it all around, cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes. Open the lid once in between and give it a stir.
- After 10 minutes, the tomatoes should be cooked through completely and soften up. Finally, add the boiled potato bites, give it a mix and pour the water.
- Let it simmer for 5 minutes. Finally, sprinkle fresh cilantro leaves and drizzle fresh lemon juice.
- Serve warm.