Dharani’s Potatoes

"Dinesh is now a slightly chubby personification of the Indian dream. His parents arranged for him an excellent match to intelligent and kindhearted Dharani—Dana describes her as a 'female Dinesh', intended as the most sincere of compliments. We visit their home, and Dharani cooks for us the best meal we eat during our two-week trip." - Kept: An American Househusband in India


  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 4 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 small cube of ginger root
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 small green chile
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • 1 medium tomato, thinly sliced
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 - 1/2 ground chile
  • handful of chopped coriander (cilantro) leaves


Boil the potatoes for twenty minutes and allow them to completely cool. This can be done in advance, and the potatoes can be refrigerated for a day or so. Peel and cube the potatoes. Heat vegetable oil in a large, non-stick skillet. Add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Add the onion when the cumin seeds begin to darken and stir-fry for around a minute. Add salt to taste. Put the ginger, garlic, green chile and coarsely chopped tomato in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add this mixture to the skillet and cook, stirring, two or three minutes. Add the tomato slices and cook, stirring, for a few more minutes. Tip in the potatoes into the pan and stir gently to coat. Add turmeric, ground chile, ground coriander, garam masala, water and combine. Simmer three to four minutes until you have a thick gravy coating the potatoes. Stir in the chopped coriander and serve immediately with basmati rice or Indian bread of your choice.