Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Bengali Dum Aloo / Aloor Dum / Vegetarian Dum Aloo

One of the most loved food that all Bengalis have is Aloor Dum / Dum Aloo. Luchi and Aloor Dum is one of those rarest food couple who will remain evergreen. No matter what day it is, no matter what occassion that is, no matter that you don't have any occassion and you just want to cheer up your boring sunday morning..Luchi and Aloor Dum will perk up your eating time. Those hot puffed up luchis ( Puris made of white flour ) resideing beside a bowl of dum aloo is a divine sight itself.

how to cook bengali style dum aloo

The Bengali Aloor Dum / Dum Aloo is  bit different from the dum aloos of other regions. It is made without onion and garlic...i.e its pure vegetarian. And generally it is a winter dish when its made with the soft new batch of potatoes coming to the market. You can make it spicy or you can add a handful of green peas to give a dash of sweetness to it. Both the versions are equally tasty and lovely.
May be its the first time that I made the Aloor Dum soo perfect. It was just like my mother used to make. But of course her is way better than mine.

how to cook bengali style dum aloo without onion and garlic

Lots of memories related with dish had its own flash back when I was cooking this dish. May be that is why the dish turned out so perfect and so tasty. My aunt lives in Cuttack, the previous capital, a small city of Odissa. We used to go there by train and on its way there was a station called Baleswar. It has lots of Dum Aloo vendors. They sell dum aloo on Shal Pata / Dried    Leaf. And its available abanduntly throughout the station. The train haults there for merely 3-5 minutes and almost every passenger eats Dum Aloo from there. Spicy and red hot Dum Aloos made of baby potatoes was something that we always looked forward in that journey.

how to cook niramish aloor dom or vegetarian dum aloo

Then their is another story which will always remain memorable. The first time we cooked for ourselves in Abidjan, my husband made Dum Aloo for me in the lunch, since I was so scared at that time to even lit the gas. Its really surprizing that how life changes. And sometimes the changes brings so many happiness with it.

Dish Reminder:

  • Many use cumin seeds for the tempering, but its the methi seeds / fenugreek seeds, which are used in the Bengali Kitchens of West Bengal. Trust me.
  • Adding green peas is totally and strongly recommended in Dum Aloo. I forgot to add it.:(
  • Authentic Bengali recipes require Mustard oil. But you can use any unflavored oil of your choice.

So, come lets cook Aloor Dum / Bengali Dum Aloo / Vegetarian Dum Aloo.

Aloor Dum / Bengali Dum Aloo / Vegetarian Dum Aloo
Serves 4/5

how to cook bengali style dum aloo or aloor dom


  • 5 medium potatoes - halved / 12-14 baby potatoes - peeled
  • 1 medium tomato - paste
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 small bunch of fresh coriander leaves - chopped
  • 1 tsp methi / fenugreek seeds
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tsp bhaja mosla (dry roast the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, dry red chillies and black pepper corn. Then grind them to a fine powder.)
  • salt
  • a handful / 1/4 cup of green peas (optional)
  • 2 tbsp mustard oil / any unflavored oil
  • Parboil the potatoes. Do not make them too soft. They should be half cooked and still firm and strong.
  • Heat oil in a pan and put the methi /fenugreek seeds.
  • When they start browning add the tomato paste.
  • Stir and cook for 3/4 minutes until its cooked to a good extent and the raw flavor is completely gone.
  • Now add the ginger paste and mix evenly.
  • Now in a cup take some water and mix the turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt.
  • Make a smooth liquid.
  • Now put this to the tomato paste.
  • Sauté and mix the spice mix with the tomato paste.
  • Cover the pan and cook for almost 5-7 minutes, or until the oil starts to separate.
  • Add 1 cup of water and mix in.
  • Also add the potatoes and if using, add the green peas with them. 
  • Cover and let them cook again until the potatoes become soft from inside.Check by breaking one potato with a spoon. If the water dries in this process then add more water, but not too much. About 1/2 cup of water will be enough.
  • Open the cover when the potatoes are cooked.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • Add the chopped coriander leaves.
  • Now wait for the water to evaporate. If you want a gravy then add 1/2 cup of more water. If you want your dum aloo to be dry, then do not add any water.
  • Simmer till the gravy reaches your desired consistency.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • Sprinkle the bhaja mosla over the potatoes.
  • Put off the flame and serve hot with roti / luchi / puri.

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