Most of the food we eat regularly doesn’t get written into recipes despite the fact that it’s delicious. Why? I can never wait long enough to take pictures – I just want to get stuck in and eat it! Often, the tantalising smell that’s been wafting through the house is enough to tease and tempt me, and the food is gone before the camera even had a chance to come out!
Aloo kofta is one of those recipes.
Aloo kofta is a bit like a really, really, good potato curry. The potatoes are boiled until pillowy and soft, then mixed with cheese and shaped into patties. I’m English, and a guilty pleasure of mine is eating chips with anything from homemade curry sauces to dal – but this is better. Fried to perfection, the kofta are crispy on the outside and just oozing with soft potato and cheese inside. Combined with the spicy richness of the gravy – wow.
Sometimes I use cream to make a really rich sauce with a great depth. For this gravy I’ve relied on almonds for a creamy richness, making it entirely vegan (you can substitute the cheese in the kofta for diary free or lose it altogether – honestly the dish is special enough anyway.)
Aloo kofta in gravy
- 8 Baby Potatoes
- 20g Cheddar Cheese (optional)
- 1 tbsp Cornflour
- Salt to taste
- 2 Medium Tomatoes
- 1 White Onion
- 3 Garlic Cloves
- 1 tbsp Ground Almonds
- ½ tsp Mustard Seeds
- 1 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
- ½ – 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder – or to taste
- 1 tsp Turmeric
- ¼ tsp Garam Masala
- Black Pepper (to taste)
- Salt (to taste)
- Begin by peeling the potatoes and then boiling/steaming them on high heat until cooked through. I like to not cook them until very soft – I like a little bite in my kofta.
- Drain the potatoes and transfer them into a bowl/saucepan. Mash them well – leaving some texture, though -, season with salt, and stir.
- Grate the cheese into the potatoes and stir through until well incorporated.
- Add cornflour and stir again. Let sit until you have made the curry base.
- Boil 2 tomatoes and a roughly chopped an onion in a little water. Add them to a blender along with a little of the cooking water, the ground almonds, and 3 crushed garlic cloves. Blend well to form a paste.
- In a frying pan, add a dash of oil and begin to fry mustard seeds until they splutter. Then add fenugreek seeds and cook a little more, finally adding the curry paste.
- Stir well and continue to cook. At this stage add the turmeric and chilli powder.
- Now you want to reduce the paste down until the oil starts to separate from the sides and the paste grows thick. At this stage, add water stir again. Cook for a further 5 minutes or so, until the sauce has thickened again. Repeat this step until the desired consistency and amount is achieved.
- Add garam masala, salt, and a generous grind of black pepper. Turn heat to low until you have fried kofta.
- Heat the oil in either a deep frying pan or fat fryer until hot.
- Shape the mashed potato into about 6-7 equal sized patties. You should be able to press them with your hands and shape them well.
- Once oil is hot, slide the kofta in to fry (be careful always with hot oil and practise caution), just 2 at a time depending on the size of your pan. Fry until golden brown and then remove to drain excess oil. Repeat until all kofta are fried.Note – Alternatively, you can shallow fry the kofta.
- Turn the gravy back up to highest heat and place half of your kofta into the pan to cook for 5 minutes in the gravy. This will soak the flavour, but won’t reduce the crispiness. The other kofta can be kept to the side and added to the gravy when plating.
- Serve the kofta and gravy with rice.