Friday, February 22, 2008

Aloo Chop - a favourite oriya snack



Born and brought up in Orissa makes me an Oriya by origin and a true oriya at heart. Unfortunately most of the people I have met know Orissa because of the natural calamities and not because of the rich cultural heritage it possesses. It saddens my heart when people show their ignorance about my state saying "oh is it the same place where the cyclone happened?" It's quite depressing to know that there are lot of people in India who are unaware of the fact that Orissa is famous for its magnificent temples, for its pristine beaches and lakes, for Lord Jagannath and Rath Yatra, for its gorgeous filigiree work and lovely handloom sarees and a vibrant cuisine and.....i can go on and on :)
Now that i have let it out from my system, I would love to introduce Oriya cuisine and my motherland to all of you in my blog posts. The fresh vegetable produce in Moscow doesn't allow me to cook much of Oriya food but then once in a while I indulge my nostalgic senses and try to create an Oriya specialty the way my mom makes back home but never get the "perfect" satisfaction. There is no comparison with mom's food as hers is the best. The smell of pancha phutan (a mix of cumin, mustard seeds, aniseed, nigella seeds and fenugreek seeds) in hot mustard oil, the pungent taste of mustard paste and the creamy poshto ( poppy seeds paste) in vegetables and fish, the melt in the mouth feel of Rasagulla and Chenna poda (baked cottage cheese cake) evokes delectable memories and transports me back in time. Right now I can just dream and drool!!



My post this time is Aloo chop, boiled potatoes cooked with ginger and onions, made into roundels, dipped in gram flour (Besan) batter and deep fried. This is a very common snack time specialty in Orissa.There are a variety of chops (I still don't know the reason behind calling them chops) vegetable chop, chinguri ( prawns) chop, egg chop, fish chop though all these are fried with coated breadcrumbs and not besan. Every eatery joint stocks up with these snacks specially singada (samosa) and Aloo chop which are freshly made during the evening and you find people flocking to buy them for their evening snacks. Oriya people love to eat and evening snacking is very common. I learnt to make these after I left Orissa and after umpteen number of trials and errors I have found a taste very similar to what I get back home:)
I finally found a guy selling them in Konkan express as Aloo Bonda.
This simple yet delicious snack is my entry for DK's Potato feast.
This also is an entry for Sia's Ode to potato.

For making Aloo chop
You need:

For the stuffing:
3 medium potatoes boiled and mashed
1 medium onion chopped finely or grated
1" pc grated ginger
1 green chili chopped
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander pwdr
1/4 tsp turmeric pwdr
1 tbsp fresh coriander leaves chopped finely
1 tsp lemon juice
salt to taste

for the batter:
3 tbsp gram flour ( besan)
1 1/2 tbsp rice flour
1/2 tsp carrom seeds (ajwain)
1/2 tsp turmeric pwdr
1/2 tsp red chili pwdr
salt to taste
1/2 cup water
a pinch of soda bicarbonate
Oil for deep frying

Method:
  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a non stick pan (I prefer mustard oil to get the authentic taste). Add cumin and mustard seeds, let it brown and splutter, add the grated onion and ginger and chopped green chili and fry till the raw smell goes off.
  2. Add the mashed potato and all the spices mentioned in stuffing and the salt. Mix on low flame and finally add the lemon juice and chopped coriander. Keep aside and let it cool.
  3. Prepare the batter by adding all the ingredients under batter and mix well so that no lumps remain.
  4. Add 1 tsp of hot oil while making the batter and be sure to make the batter a little thick so that it coats the stuffing nicely.
  5. Heat the oil for deep frying. Divide the potato mixture into equal lemon sized balls and flatten them with your palm.
  6. Dip each flattened piece in the batter and deep fry till golden brown. Make sure you have 1 inch of oil for deep frying in the pan. Serve hot with chutney or ketchup.

35 comments:

Dhivya said...

look like bonda's in tamil....pic looks yummy and delicious..wish i could grab one piece...

Happy cook said...

Delicious. I also know this as bonda.
It is long ago i made them.
They look delicious. Send it to both the potato events

sra said...

Saswati, cheer up! There are many people who know Orissa for its happy side too - I'm one of them. A few months ago, many of us, mostly from the Indian food blog community, participated in RCI-Orissa - I myself have two dishes in my blog and so do many others - check them out!

Kalai said...

We, too, call this bonda in Tamil. Looks delicious!! Like happy cook said, you could send it in to Sia's ode to potato (monsoon spice) and Dhivi's potato fe(a)st on culinary bazaar. It would be a great entry! :)

Uma said...

Hi Saswati,

Thanks for your nice comments on my blog.

Aloo Chop (or as we call Aloo Bonda) looks so yummy! Very nice entry for the potato feast.

Richa said...

hey Saswati, lovely description of Orissa, look forward to some authentic recipes from there! aloo chops are very tempting!
BTW, thanks for ur kind & lovely words on my blog!
Dusvidaniya ;)

Cham said...

Looks delicious those aloo chop

Trupti said...

Hi Saswati,
In maharashtra we call his 'Batata Wada'. I love this wada very much. Today I come to know another word for Batata Wada

Mishmash ! said...

we call this bonda in kerala too.....nice with a cup of garam garam chai :)

TBC said...

That looks and sounds so much like batata wada. I so want to have one of these right now.:-(

Devyani said...

(chop, egg chop, fish chop though all these are fred with coated breadcrumbs and not besan)....gotte jagare fried ku fred lekhi deichhu...check that out...aloo chops are really delicious....really made me go back to my olden days.......

Devyani said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DEEPA said...

I also made Bonda's ..Will post in sometime next week ...your's look awesome

zlamushka said...

what a fab snack. Yum!

Jaya said...

oh it is my one fav one ..and saswati I take pride in recalling all the glorious past history about orissa or Kalinga ...
and then i am too glad to know about PURI ,Rath -jatra and Konark sorya mondir ...my all time fav tourist destinatons ...
tumaye ki boli aaro bolo ..keep posting oriya dishes ,it will help us know better about orissa ...
chalo khob bhalo ...
and another I like the salad also ..
exotic one ..turkey and pomegranate sald lovely
hugs and smiles

Sagari said...

yummy aalo chop saswati looks sooo deleciouss

Cynthia said...

Saswati, I do identify with your sentiment about people's perception about the place you're from, Orissa. Whenever I talk about my birth country, Guyana, people often say, "Oh, Jones Town. That's that place where Jim Jones poisioned and killed a lot of people right?" It makes me angry and sad at the same time.

I am very happy that you are promoting the cuisine of your area and I look forward to learning a lot.

We make someting similar to you aloo chop, but we simple call it potato ball :)

Thank you for stopping by my blog and I look forward to seeing you around.

Saswati said...

hi dhivya..is it also called bonda in tamil. i see from the comments that it has diff names.

Yes happy cook iam sending them to both the events.

sra thats really nice to know that you girls had an oriya food event.met very few ppl like you who know abt orissa.

thanks kalai and uma for all the support.

hey richa you you have already picked up russian:))yes i will surely post more abt orissa.

thanks cham

well i had heard abt batata wada but never knew they were made the same way trupti.

thanks mishmash,yes they taste amazing with chai:)

yes tbc trupti says its batata wada and i alsoo crave alot of these kin d of food here in foreign land.:(

Saswati said...

thik kahilu devyani...i miss alot of these snacks here.

thanks deepa for dropping by and waiting for your post.

hey zlamushka you will surely love these they are nice and spicy.

thank you jaya....and bengalis i know love orissa:)

thankx sagari..they were delicious

cynthia you made my day...:)))

Pooja V said...

Wow..we call this batata Wada. This is our pattie for humble desi styled burger.

Jaya said...

there is a small surprise for u saswati ,if u have time do visit my place.
hugs and smiles
jaya

Asha said...

Hello. another Odiya girl I see here!:)
Pragyan is the only one so far from Odiya who told me not to say "Oriya"!!:D
Good to meet you too. We call them Bombay Bonda in K'taka, love it. Looks good.

Meera said...

We call it batatavada in Mumbai. My favorite!! You have a wonderful blog. I will visit often for more Oriya delicacies. Spasiba!!:-)

DK said...

The similarities in different cuisines are so mind boggling and I appreciate you taking your effort in promoting recipe from your home region. Would look fwd to more and more wonderful recipes. Thanks for sending these tasty bonds's oops Aloo Chops ;-) my way :)

Pragyan said...

Hi Saswati, Another post from you that made me nostalgic. I know how you feel when people are so ignorant about Orissa. I saw Asha's comment about Odiya vs. Oriya :) Yummy aloo chop..and I found another Odiya blogger - Devyani. :)

Pragyan said...

Devyani's profile is not accessible. So I guess I will have to wait till I can catch her some other way! :) Have a great day.

vandana rajesh said...

hi saswati. gr8 aloo chop recipe. love the yummy bondas. haven't been able to keep update due to the shifting. got a house at last and moved inlast night. so its unpacking time as usual:)
looking forward to more delicious recipes.

random thoughts said...

hello saswati!
kudos to you for keeping the odiya flag flying high..we really wanted more odiya bloggers in this wide wide world of food bloggers!you aloo chop recipe is a must try.BTW,i had a friend of the same name as yours in college.did u study in ravenshaw?
Apoorva

ThreeTastes said...

Thanks for sharing your recipes and memories from your homeland. This looks like a great appetizer, or pupu as they're called here.

Aditya said...

Hi Saswati,

I am oriya too (settled in CA,USA)and my husband loooves ALOO CHOP, I make them without the Rice flour, however this sounds delicious and will try it out, btw, I too share the same pain as you do about describing Orisaa, I always have to say, we are next to Calcutta ....

have a nice day!
Rashmi Mohanty

ilima said...

Hi,
Wanted to clarify that although Aloo bonda, Batata vada etc. seem to be similar to Aloo Chop, they taste different. Aloo Chop's outer coating(the besan layer) is much thinner than Aloo Bonda and the stuffing is more spicy compared to both Bonda and Batata vada.
Saswati, your recipe is nice but can be better if fried groundnuts is added to the stuffing.

PreeOccupied said...

Aloo chop and chai. I want some NOW.

Authenticoriyafood said...

A nice snack option while watching the world cup.....even i do some cooking....mostly traditional recipies....

Me said...

Always proud to be an Oriya first and then Indian and finally global citizen too!!! love everything about Orissa !!!!Thanks for the blog.....Cheers!!!Sunita

subhrajit nayak said...

Mam- I am going to give it a try today. In my place they also put groundnuts with that aloopaste. jade mora a loo chopta bhala lagiba , then I am going to post here .
And who cares what others think about our place, I am very much proud of my place for its rich cultural heritage and yummy delicious food !!

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