Like any other mom in the world (although a much saner and more accommodating version of the present me!) mummy wanted me to eat my greens. I on the other hand was quite a handful. Green leafy veggies, too green for my taste. Bitter gourd was, well, bitter! Pumpkin or squash of any kind was either too sweet or mushy or had “too much water in them”. Who does that? Who comes up with excuses like- too much water in this vegetable! But I did. And now when I have my own picky, 6 year old, way too smart for her age, kid, I realize how patient mummy was with me. One group of food I did like was meat. So she would make stories where soy chunks turned into little chicken nuggets, Arbi or Tarro root would be cooked like fried fish (and trust me the ones she cooks taste like one) and lauki or bottle gourd would take shape of meatballs and then I’d gobble them up like no man’s business.
But she wouldn’t get lucky all the time and then the caring Indian mum in her, who wouldn’t let her kid go to bed hungry, gave in and results would be potatoes for dinner. Sometimes for breakfast, lunch AND dinner. I’ve eaten a lot of potatoes growing up. So much so that now there’s only a few dishes, I really enjoy, have potatoes in them. You have to admit though, in an Indian kitchen potatoes are the unsung heroes. It has carried a lot of us picky eating Indian kids through their childhood and even today when nothing else works, potatoes still save the day. Aloo paratha, Tikki Chaat, Dum Aloo or something as simple as aloo fry (simple stir fried potatoes) are some of the dishes you can cook like a breeze and feed an army without rushing to the store for special ingredients.
There is one such potato dish that has always come to my rescue at difficult times. Times when we are out of groceries or on a time crunch or well, have a picky eater in hand! Its simple, no frill or drama. Its a quick microwave aloo fry recipe or aloo bhujiya that goes great with parathas, poori or a humble daal chawal. Done before you know it and dinner will be ready before the kids even finish setting up the table. Play around and add onion, ginger garlic or green peas to your liking.
Ingredients: Serves 4
3 medium sized potatoes (I used red skinned but any variety is fine), Peeled and sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (adjust per taste)
1 teaspoon garam masala (can get creative and use tikka masala, tandoori powder or goda masala)
1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin powder
Salt to taste
Lime juice (just a couple squirts per taste)
Toss all the ingredients together in a big bowl coating the potatoes well.
Transfer to a wide mouthed microwavable dish. Spread the potatoes evenly. Cover with a cling/plastic wrap. Microwave on a high for 8-10 minutes, stirring once after 4-5 minute mark.
Take a plastic wrap out and mircrowave again for two minutes gently stirring the potatoes once after 1 minute mark.
Serve as a side with poori, paratha, filled in a sandwich or the possibilities are endless!