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Crushed Potatoes with Black Sesame Seeds (Kalay Tilwalle Aloo)
Not only do these potatoes taste fabulous, they also look exotic with black sesame seeds. They can be served hot or at room temperature. Take them on a picnic to replace potato salad and you’ll win kudos.
21⁄2 lbs small red or white new potatoes 1.25 kg
3 tbsp mustard oil 45 mL
21⁄2 tsp black sesame seeds 12 mL
2 tsp hot pepper flakes 10 mL
3⁄4 tsp turmeric 4 mL
2 tsp salt or to taste 10 mL
1⁄4 cup freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice 50 mL
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped 25 mL
1. Place potatoes in a large saucepan filled three-quarters full of water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook just until tender, 12 to 14 minutes.
2. Drain and let cool slightly. Press each potato between palms to “crush,” by applying gentle pressure, keeping potato intact. This exposes parts of the inside of the potato to the spices and creates a crusty potato.
3. In a large skillet, heat oil over high heat until almost smoking. Remove from heat and let cool for 1 minute (see Tip, left). Return skillet to medium heat. Add sesame seeds, hot pepper flakes and turmeric and sauté for 1 minute.
4. Add potatoes and salt and mix well. Drizzle 1 tbsp (15 mL) water around edges of pan. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring every 3 to 4 minutes. Shake pan periodically. Potatoes should be slightly crusty and coated in masala.
5. Remove from heat and pour lime juice over top. Stir to mix. Garnish with cilantro. Serve with an Indian bread.
Mustard oil is made from cold-pressed mustard seeds and is not an infusion. It has a distinctive taste. However, it has an element that can be toxic to some. Heating it to smoking point neutralizes this and makes it safe for cooking.
Recipes reprinted with permission from Complete Book of Indian Cooking, by Suneeta Vaswani, Robert Rose Inc., 2007.