Nothing fancy today – just some simple, homely but utterly comforting Aloo Matar or Potatoes & Peas Curry with steamed rice. You know I’m not a huge fan of fancy shmancy food for weekdays and this morning I woke up especially craving soupy warmth of shorba.

What is shorba? Well, in Pakistan we dont really use the word “curry” . There is “salan” which means thicker, sauce like gravies and there is “shorba” which is used for soupy thin consistency.

Now its upto you to decide whether you want your aloo matar of salan or shorba like consistency but personally I prefer lots of shorba. Now I know it sounds simple but making proper clear shorba is considered an art in my country and can be a bit tricky. There shouldn’t be any chunks or bits of onions and tomatoes floating in the shorba. If it’s yogurt based then you need to pay attention that yogurt doesn’t split and form tiny white bubbles in your curry.

Read on the procedure to avoid these mistakes and get a beautifully smooth and golden shorba each time, not only for your Aloo Matar but for any non veg or veg curry you choose to cook.

2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes (almost 2+1/2 cups)
2 cups peas
1 medium onion, sliced
1 large or two medium tomatoes, peeled and diced
4 cloves garlic
1 inch piece ginger
1 teaspoon saltor to taste
2 teaspoons red chilli powder or to taste
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
2 tablespoons ghee/ olive or coconut oil
Green chilli peppers for garnish (optional)

This Is What You Do:
Heat oil in a deep pan on medium heat. Add onions, fry till golden brown.

Remove pan from heat. Scoop out onions.

Add fried onions, garlic, ginger, tomatoes and yogurt to a food processor. Make sure to peel the tomato, it will give you smoother paste and more clear shorba.

Add dry spices and salt to the food processor/blender. Blend to make a very smooth paste. There shouldn’t be any chunks or bits of tomatoes and onions in the paste.

Add this masala paste back to the pan.

Cook on medium low heat till the sauce gets thick and vibrant, and you can see traces of oil on the edges. Cooking on medium low heat stops yogurt from splitting in the pan. Avoid high heat.

Add potatoes and four cups of water. Cover the pan, reduce heat to medium low. Let it simmer till the potatoes are half done.

Add peas. Keep cooking covered at same temerature another 6-7 minutes or till the peas and potatoes are done but not mushy.

If the curry consistency is to your liking then your aloo matar meal is done. If there is not enough curry left, add a little more water and simmer another couple of minutes.

Garnish with fresh coriander and green chilli peppers.

Enjoy with steamed rice, plain whole wheat roti or poori (fried flatbread).

Serves 4

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