Aloo Paratha (Indian Potato Pancakes)

>> Monday, September 9, 2013


Aloo Paratha (Indian Potato Pancakes)


Hey, did you know "aloo" means potato? One of my favorite foods, for sure.

Aloo parathas are delicious anytime. While some people eat them for breakfast, they're also great to wrap up fillings like cucumber-yogurt salad, eggs, chutneys, lentils, beans, or anything your imagination suggests. The most difficult part, if there is a difficult part to this simple recipe, is rolling out each cake. Be gentle and sprinkle your surfaces with flour as you need it.

Aloo Paratha (Indian Potato Pancakes)


Though my Indian-American friend Sheilja has made these before, she called her mom in New Jersey to get a specific recipe before we cooked together last week. Her mom wouldn't give exact measurements because part of the process is tasting the dough and adjusting it to your taste and the feel of the dough as you roll it out. I wrote down her recipe as we made cakes that were similar to a delicate, sticky bread dough.

Sheilja says her mom can toast these cakes on three or more griddles at once without losing her head or getting flustered. Her mom's parathas are also much thinner than the 1/8" pancakes we made. Delicate, yes; delicious, absolutely! If ours are this yummy, I would die for the ones her mother makes.

Ingredients

6 cups potatoes, boiled and finely shredded
1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 tsp red chili powder
4 tsp cumin powder
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp salt (or more, to taste)
About 3/4 cup flour (we used whole wheat flour), plus more for rolling
2 tbsp vegetable oil, plus more for cooking (about 1/4 cup total)

Directions

Stir together all ingredients. Form the potato mixture into balls the size of a golf ball - about 2" in diameter. Coat each of the balls in flour and let rest for 5 minutes.

Aloo Paratha (Indian Potato Pancakes)


Gently roll out each ball on a floured surface, until it is about 1/4 inch thick and 4 or 5 inches in diameter. Place on waxed paper while rolling the rest.

Heat a flat skillet on high until a drop of water sizzles off it immediately. Place one or two parathas on the skillet, making sure they don't touch while browning. Swirl a drop of oil on the top of each pancake, then flip it when the first side is browned. Put a bit of oil on that side as the uncooked side browns and begins to bubble a bit.

Serve warm with any variety of chutneys, vegetables, yogurt, or the delicious raita - a cucumber-yogurt-mint sauce.

Makes about 30 pancakes.

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