Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Batate Saung - Potatoes in Coconut-Red Chilli Gravy

Summer vacation for Little Miss M is all done. School started last week and she is one happy kitty. I don't remember ever being happy about returning to school after holidays. Summer holidays for us as kids meant visiting cousins or meeting them at my grandfather's house in Mysore. That house holds a lot of great memories for all of us.

It was/is one of those old, rambling houses built in the early 1900s, with 20 foot ceilings, a large courtyard at the center with a tulsi plant on a beautiful pedestal, an uggrana (storage room/pantry) that was larger than the kitchen (which was quite big itself) and the surrounding gardens with many fruit bearing trees and flowering plants. There was this old jackfruit tree that bore so many fruits that whoever visited our house during the season got to take one home! There were wood apple, guava, amla, gooseberry, mulberry, jamun and ramphal trees and we all were adept at climbing them to get to the goodies. We've had numerous falls and bruises from those, many major, most of which our parents never even came to know about. I shudder to think about them now! Four cousins and I, who were all one to two years apart in age, pulled many stunts that would freak me out now, if M or S ever tried any of those! I narrate those stories to M as adventures of the "Famous Five of Mysore" and she loves to hear about our various romps and escapades. Cousin A was the oldest, the responsible one. I was next, followed by cousin V, who was the naughtiest and got into most trouble. Then came cousin D, the other girl in the gang and finally cousin V, the youngest and therefore, the target of many pranks. For my sis D who was a few more years older than us, we were just little pests that needed to be put up with or ignored but she did a good job of mediating our many fights and playing the big sister to all of us, when required. So many stories, I could write a book about it or even a series, really! :) Good old days.

Onto the recipe now. This dish is popular in most Konkani homes. First of all, it has potatoes which is like a universal favorite and then, a fiery and slightly tangy masala to top that with. What is not to like? My MIL always adds a bit of fenugreek seeds, which I really like. That can be skipped, though.

Batata Saung

Ingredients:

2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into thick cubes
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tsp coconut oil
salt to taste

To Grind:
8-10 dried byadgi red chilies (or 2 regular red chilies and 3-4 byadgi)
1 tbsp coriander seeds
5-6 seeds methi/fenugreek
1/4 cup grated coconut
1/4 tsp thick tamarind concentrate

Method:

Boil the cubed potatoes in a pressure cooker, along with a little salt. Keep aside.
Dry roast coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds and the red chillies. Once cooled, grind to a smooth paste along with coconut and tamarind, using a little water.
Heat oil in a pan and fry the chopped onions, until browned.
Add the ground massol/masala, boiled potatoes and 1/2 a cup of water. Season with salt and mix well. Add more water for a thinner curry.
Bring to a boil, then let it simmer on low for 5-10 minutes.
Serve hot with rice and dalithoy or tawa rotis.

16 comments:

Veena Theagarajan said...

Looks so yummy and flavourable
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Shweta in the Kitchen said...

My mom makes this regularly though i haven't tried it yet. love the color. Nice write up too

http://shwetainthekitchen.blogspot.com

Premalatha Aravindhan said...

wow delicious and tempting recipe...

Priti said...

Looks yum and nice recipe

Gauri said...

We never make potatoes in coconut gravy.. this looks spicy and delicious!
Happy Independence Day!

Gauri said...

We never make potatoes with coconut..this looks delicious!
Happy Independence Day!

Jaya said...

"Famous Five" :-))..yeah we do have so many wonderful memories of growing up , somehow I also feel our kids wont get to see and experience many of them ..such is an irony now ..loved the write-up, almost similar as mine..sigh! remembering good old days :-)..this potato fiery fry will be delicious with rotis ..and congrats on completeing 6 years in blogging ..from " Dor review " which got me hooked to your blog and till this potato saung/o r bhaji should i say..hugs to you

Bong Mom said...

Have heard so much about this dish. have to make it now. My Mother uses that spice mix with cinnamon, clove thrown in and minus the tamarind for parwal.
That aloo is making me all hungry

Vani said...

Thanks, all!

Gauri - we don't either, in Mysore. Coconut & potatoes is very much a coastal thing. Even my Tulu friend makes something similar.

Jaya - Dor was a long time ago. Thanks for being a good, encouraging friend throughout! :)

San - cool, now I have a new masala for parwal. Problem is to get hold of them :(

Unknown said...

Childhood memories :-), sweet. I fondly remember our summer escapades too, somehow Mysore used to be the 'go-to' place for all our cousins every Summer.

Nice curry, I have had this at one of my Mangalorean friend's for lunch, love the flavor. Then potato makes everything good, right, haha:-)

Sharmila said...

I was waiting for this and forgot to check your place. The masala mix sounds so simple. Am so making this on a veg day next. You know I recently picked up a packet of tamarind concentrate . :-)
I too have wonderful memories of vacations and now wonder if our parents really kept an eye on us or were oblivious to all those adventures we had during the long summer vacations. :-)

Sharmila said...

I was waiting for this and forgot to check your place. The masala mix sounds so simple. Am so making this on a veg day next. You know I recently picked up a packet of tamarind concentrate . :-)
I too have wonderful memories of vacations and now wonder if our parents really kept an eye on us or were oblivious to all those adventures we had during the long summer vacations. :-)

Vani said...

Unknown - couldn't figure out if this was A or V? Do let me know :) But yes, such good times, alva? Carefree days

S- easy, right? SPicy too. I think parents would have known some things but as kids, we were kinda sneaky and there would be many that they had no clue about.

Vanamala Hebbar said...

Super..i will try it someday

Nandita Pai Shirali said...

hey... u a konkani? Nice konkani recipes here :)