Skip to main content

A Taste of Amritsar

Writing in the middle of my vacation from my beloved hometown. Amritsar, the holy city, right next to the border they drew when they partitioned Punjab. There is a lot I can tell you about Amritsar food, and I probably will sometime. But right now, I just want to talk about this one curry from Amritsar's culinary repertoire. I want to talk about aloo-wadi.

Wadis are sun-dried spheres of urad dal cooked with lots of black pepper and red chillies. You can get wadis at most grocery stores in Punjab but the true Amritsaris go to those tiny stores in the old walled city. We have a favorite store to buy wadis and pappads. Every family does!

Before I tell you how to cook wadi, a word of warning. Wadis are very, very spicy and definitely not for the faint-hearted. The two most popular ways to cook wadi are with bottle gourd or a curry with potatoes. I've never cared much for the gourd family, so aloo-wadi it is.



Break wadi into small pieces. Heat a tsp of ghee in a pan and fry wadis for a minute, taking care not to burn them. Remove and set aside. Puree a large onion and 2 tomatoes into a paste. Heat a tbsp of ghee and fry the tomato-onion paste until ghee separates. Add 1/2 tsp turmeric and stir for another minute. Now add the wadi and 2 potatoes, cubed. Stir fry on low heat for a couple of minutes, then add 1/2 tsp salt and a cup of water and pressure cook for 3 whistles.

Sprinkle some garam masala and chopped coriander and serve with roti. It's a good idea to serve some plain yogurt alongside the curry to balance the spice. At the very least, have a few glasses of water ready. These ugly brown rounds truly pack a punch.

Srivalli, the spicy aloo-wadi is coming over to your Curry Mela.

Comments

notyet100 said…
even we prepare thesame...specially durin winters,,,ur curry looks delicious,..wil taste great with roti,,:-),..hppy bloggin ceeya
Anonymous said…
Even in southern India we have a wadi like this. We call it sambar vadam.

The curry looks delicious. Can you please get the recipe for homemade wadi while you are in Amritsar?
Jayashree said…
Wow....sounds like something I'd love to taste!!! Haven't come across authentic wadis where I live.
Shriya said…
Looks so delicious. Must have tasted soo good. Nice recipe.
Wow curry looks awesome.
SMN said…
Hey i just saw how to prepare potato wadis but didnt get wat exactly u mean by wadi?

i watched the chakde india show in ndtv imagine..
Bharti said…
That looks so delicious! My MIL used to make these but then stopped 'cause the vadis available to her were not that great any more. I wish we could taste some authentic ones.
Priti said…
Wadi aloo are always great combo to prepare..your version looking quite yummy..liked the wadi colour very much
ohooo log ghar gaye hue hain.... cool .... ghar par sab kaise hai... sabko mera namaste.... and when r u returning.... ghar ki aloo wadi .. lucky u .... mumma in mansa makes amazing wadi matar...
Shreya said…
It looks so good, and I have never had this:-( Love the recipe, will try it. Great entry.
Pragyan said…
Would love to try the wadis. In Odiya cuisine, we too have urad dal fritters sun-dried, but they are not very spicy.
Sunshinemom said…
I know - I am weak hearted! I can't just have them, they are too too spicy!!
Srivalli said…
Thats such a lovely dish!..thanks for the entry.

Popular posts from this blog

A Bowlful of Comfort

I have a friend who is quite the globetrotter. Lunches at her place, often right after her trips, are a treasure trove of global flavours. But the last time we met, she was just back from Tamil Nadu and out she brought a bowl of curd rice. I love curd rice and have eaten a lot of it over the years but my friend's version was so full of flavours and textures, it was a revelation. Obviously, I asked for the recipe.

The genius of this curd rice lies in adding the tempering or the tadka twice, once to mix in the rice so it absorbs all the flavours. Then you make a second batch to top the rice with just before you serve, so it adds crunch to the usually mushy dish. The recipe also has a few other elements added in for texture, freshness and flavour.

I over-ate at lunch at my friend's and I over-ate again when I made this for myself for lunch. Plus, all the ingredients you need are likely in your kitchen already so you may as well go make it now.

Ingredients
1/2 cup rice
1 cup plain…

Fruits of the Forest

I know there hasn't been a new recipe on these pages for a while. But worry not, I'm back with a real zinger. Earthy, creamy, crunchy - this is an appetizer that ticks all the right boxes. And if you happen to be a mushroom lover like me, this is the best way to eat mushrooms I've found so far. I present to you, for all your year end parties and appetizer cravings - creamy mushroom pate on toast.

Its mushroom pate two way - just on its own and panko-crumbed and fried. Both go on a crisp garlic baguette with watercress and some kewpie mayonnaise. Here's the recipe.

Ingredients
Crunchy garlic butter toasts (I buy them as is, but you can also slice and toast baguettes)
200 grams button mushrooms
1 small onion
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp cream cheese
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
kewpie mayonnaise (or regular mayonnaise)
watercress or micro herbs
salt and black pepper to taste
oil for deep frying

First, make mushroom pate. Y…

Farm to Fork in Chail

Back in 19th century, when Shimla was the summer capital of India, the Maharaja of Patiala got the British rulers riled over his dalliances and got banned from entering the city. Not the one to be put down so easily, he found a tiny little town about an hour from Shimla and made Chail his very own summer capital. Today, Chail still has the impressive Palace that the Maharaja built and the highest cricket ground in the world. There really isn't much more to the city apart from a small local market and a couple of hotels that get spillover crowd from Shimla in the summers. It's a pleasant little diversion but that's not why I went to Chail. I stopped nine kilometers short of the town to make Ekam my home for a weekend.

Sumeet Singal built this house on a cliff as his own weekend home. Today, even when Ekam is open as a luxury boutique resort, the cosy homely feeling remains intact. I asked Sumeet what there was to do during my three day holiday at Ekam. He told me that ther…