Thursday, March 14, 2013

Batata Phodi - Pan Fried Potatoes, Konkani Style

Apparently the Indian Censor Board is going to take a closer look at "item numbers", the not-related-to-main-story songs in Hindi movies featuring skimpily clad females that purportedly increase marketability of a movie, to make sure they don't objectify women. Just the fact that they even use the term "item" is so derogatory.  

The portrayal of women in Indian cinema has never been about the real woman, but more like an accessory to main male-dominated plots. How often have we seen women as being strong willed, successful and happy in Indian cinema? If they are strong and have lives that does not involve sacrifices or being submissive (to husband, kids, in-laws, society, something!), then of course they are bitchy, unhappy human beings. And if ever women lost in love, they never marry again, choosing to live in the memory of the love they lost (remember Elizabeth in Lagaan?). Men, on the other hand, quickly move on. They HAVE to, apparently. Else it is not palatable to the audiences! Then you have an aging Amitabh Bachchan in Nishabd, who falls in love with his daughter's 18 year old friend and in the end shows no remorse nor makes any apologies for it. How is that fine and what kind of message does that send? And don't even get me talking on the endless movies where you find spineless men who cave in to family pressures, who stay silent while their wives are being mistreated. 

Cinema is one powerful, far-reaching medium which can effectively be used to cultivate the views of our society, show what the right thing is - you know, where strong men stand for what is right versus being the so-called "good sons" or girls who aim to get a good education instead of a good husband! There has been a shift though, with movies like "No one killed Jessica" or "Fashion", where characters are not necessarily pristine pure nor totally evil, but just everyday women going about the business of life. We certainly need more of those.  

Coming to the recipe, this is a less guilt inducing fried potato. Very few ingredients and tastes amazing. It is generally served as a side with rice and dalithoy  but makes for an excellent snack by itself. You can never just eat one! 


2 large potatoes, sliced into 1/3" slices
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/4 tsp salt
a few piches of asafoetida
1/2 cup semonia/rava, for dredging
Oil for cooking


Soak potato slices in water.
Mix together the red chili powder, salt and hing.
Heat tawa/frying pan. Smear the chilli-hing mixture on the potato slices, coating both sides. Then dredge in the rava.
Place them on the heated tawa, leaving a little space between slices.
Pour oil around the slices. Cook covered on medium-low for 4-5 min, sprinkling some water around the slices every couple minutes.
Once lighltly browned, flip to cook the other side, repeating the oil and water process.
Drain on a paper towel. Repeat with the remaining slices.
Serve with rice and dalithoy or munch on as is.


Priya Suresh said...

Totally agree with you, honestly i dont like watching movies nowadays.

Love to finish that whole plate rite now,irresistible and seriously tempting crispy beauties.

Nupur said...

I rarely watch movies, whether Bollywood, Hollywood or any other, but my friend recently made me watch a Hindi movie called "Chak De India" with Shah Rukh and it was really fun and full of girl power.

Leena Chandrashekar said...

batata looks very crispy and yummy..ya i truely agree with u a days films stories have no meaning or thoughts involved...but randomly made to make money thats it...

Madhavi said...

Batata Phodi looks greattt!!!

Veena Theagarajan said...

so yummy looking potato

Sushma Madhuchandra said...

I too rarely watch movies these days! BTW, the potato phodi looks too good to resist!

Shama Nagarajan said...

Interesting and yummy .

Ongoing event:
Celebrate - Easter
in my blog

sra said...

There's no end to the raving and ranting I could do about this topic. So let me just say that I've never tried this dish and I intend to soon.

Archana Kumar said...

So totally agree with you Vani. And those phodis look perfect...Batate phodis can make any meal awesome !!

Nagashree said...

Well said, my sentiments too.

I love this phodi and have one in my draft, waiting to make again and take better pics :-). Your looks perfectly done.

divya said...

Fabulous n delicious ...

Smitha said...

Vani thank you,we called those people.

Vani said...

Good luck, Smitha! Hope the move goes smooth. Enjoy Bangalore!

Vani said...

Thanks for the lovely comments, all!

Vanamala Hebbar said...

very nice to me