I have a confession to make. Whenever in Kolkata I see my Father back from market, carrying a bag full of veggies and fish in one hand and a box of sweet on the other hand, I wish I could go back fifty years ago when Bengalis used to eat without caring a little for all the health conscious jargon invented now a days. One of the main attraction was to have gorom gorom Radhaballabhi with Alu'r dom which is still rated number one breakfast item. It’s a poori which has a lentil stuffing and comparatively bigger in size than 'luchis'.As it is favorite among all you are sure to find these at roadside stall as well as sweet shops. By the way I forgot to add that I wish to see my Father go to the market like a quintessential Bengali Bhadralok attired in a dhoti and kurta which he never did ! Wow, It would be a sight to watch ;-)
500 gms All purpose flour
1/2 tsp Salt
3 tbsp Oil or Ghee
1 cup Warm water
1 1/4 cups Chholar Dal (Bengal Gram) Washed and soaked overnight
1.5 tsp Jeera (Cumin seeds)
3-4 Dry Red chillies
1 small Dalchini (Cinnamon)
1/2 tsp Saunf (Aniseed)
1 tsp Ginger, grated
1 Green chilli
1 tsp Sugar
Salt to taste
Ghee or Oil for frying
In a pan dry roast Cinnamon + Red chillies on low flame till they are darker (approx 2 mins). Remove from the pan and add Cumin seeds till it releases nice aroma.
We are dry roasting cumin seeds separately because cumin takes less time to turn brown so for even results separate roasting is best solution. Cool down completely and grind to a fine powder. Keep aside.*
Drain water from dal and grind with a green chilli to make a fine paste. While grinding try to add very little water ( I would suggest adding 1 or 2 tbsp water at a time). Use a butter knife to scrape the paste from the sides and blades and run again for smooth paste. Once the mixture cools down grind it again for smooth texture.
Heat 1 tbsp ghee in a pan, add saunf and grated ginger. Fry on low flame, let it sizzle and then add dal paste into it. Mix in prepared masala powder* and season with salt. Keep stirring till water / moisture evaporates.
When it appears completely dry add sugar and mix well. Let this mixture cool down. And grind the mixture again for the extra smooth powder texture. Like shown in the picture below.
In between sieve together the flour and salt for the dough. Make a well in between and pour 3 tbsp oil or ghee and water little by little to form a pliable dough. Knead well until soft. Cover and let it rest for 1/2 hour.
Make small portions of the dough, give them a shape of discs and pour 2 tbps filling in center, bring pooris edges together to seal it. Dust the kitchen counter, flatten it and roll it uniformly. Make sure the size of disc is bigger and thicker than normal pooris. At a time you can fry only one or may be two pooris as these are bigger in size. Repeat the same steps for the rest of the day and stuffing.
Deep fry the pooris on high flame initially then turn the heat to low once the poori is fully puffed on one side, flip and fry from both the sides. Drain off excess oil and serve with Aloo'r Dom.
1/2 kg Potatoes, wash and peeled
3 Onions, chopped
2 tbsp Garlic
1 large Bay leaf
1 tsp Cumin seeds
3-4 Green chillies (adjust according to your taste)
3 big Tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp Coriander paste
1 tsp Red chilly powder
1/2 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Garam masala
1/2 tsp Turmeric paste
3-4 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste
Prick potatoes with a fork and sprinkle some salt. Fry the potatoes in oil till lightly brown and keep aside.
In the same pan add cumin seeds, when seeds sizzle add onions and fry on medium flame.
Saute the onions till the raw smell goes away then add garlic paste and fry for 2 minutes. Add red chilly powder, coriander and turmeric powder and mix well. Cook masala for 2 minutes and then add tomatotes and let it simmer on low heat until the masala is cooked. Next add in the fried potatoes and mix thoroughly with the spices.
Cook till the potatoes are tender. In between sprinkle some water, cover and cook. Throw in some green chillies. Adjust the seasonings and lastly add garam masala and dum the potatoes on low flame for about 15 minutes. By now the masala will be very thick and oil will float on top. The gravy should not be runny but thick and potatoes are nicely coated with thick gravy. Turn off the heat and garnish with fresh chopped leaves. Serve this delicious, spicy aloo dom with Radhaballavi. Well traditionally finish it off with a sweet at the end.