The Gujarati potato curry is a regular for quite a large number of people living in India. It’s popular because it has a perfect balance of being cheap and easy to prepare and being delicious. It only has three core ingredients: Potatoes, tomatoes and salt. However, the recipe in this post has a little more kick than that.
- Pressure cooker (or Instant Pot Duo)
You might be able to make this curry without a pressure cooker but I’ve never done it that way so can’t help you there.
Please note that the ratios below are scoped and relative to other ingredients/spices within their own section. So 5x salt and 5x potatoes are not the same 😂
- 1x medium onion
- 3x medium tomatoes
- 5x medium potatoes
- 0.1x cooking oil
- 5x Salt
- 1.5x Turmeric
- 1x Fresh ginger / Ginger powder
- 0.5x Asafoeteda
- 1x Sugar
A note on the core ingredients: The core ingredients need to balance each other. The general ratio for onions/tomatoes/potatoes that I go for is 1:3:5. Obviously you can change this as you like. If you like it to be more tangy, add more tomatoes. If you want it to be richer, add more onions. Although, you can also make it richer by adding half grated onions and half medium chopped onions without adding extra onions.
As for the spices, I like a little bit more turmeric, although most people I know only add 1x turmeric. Also, the ratio of salt is entirely subjective. I don’t like my curry to be too salty, but sometimes if I am having it with rice I’ll step it up a little bit since the rice will be absorbing a lot of the flavour. If you do choose to follow that, make sure you don’t add salt to the water when boiling rice (does not apply to steamed rice). Sugar is sort of optional but I always like to add it in a bit. It adds to the richness and balances the salt.
- 3x Fresh/Ready chopped garlic
- 0.5x Chilli powder
- 3x Finely chopped green chillis
- 2x Medium Peppers
A note on optional spices and ingredients: Garlic brings a lot of flavour to the curry but not everyone likes it. If you really like garlic, crush it and then chop it finely. As for the chilli powder, it does two things: 1) Adds a burst of colour to the curry. 2) Adds that kick. If you’re like me and like the colour more than the kick, add Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder. It’s not spicy at all but adds that iconic red curry colour.
Chopped green chillis are great to add a bit of a kick. The kick from green chillis is different than the one that you get from red chilli powder. It’s a sort of kick that comes with a unique fresh chilli smell that you don’t get from red chilli powder. Although, if you don’t like the kick but want the smell, my mum has a trick where she cuts a chilli vertically, removes the core and the seeds and adds them to the curry. Once curry is ready you can take them out. Peppers are for taste and additional texture.
- Wash the potatoes, do not peel them
- Chop onions, tomatoes, potatoes to small-medium pieces
- Add oil to the pressure cooker and set to medium heat
- Once oil is heated, add the chopped onions – let them simmer for 2-3 minutes
- Add chopped tomatoes – let them simmer for 3-4 minutes
- Add chopped potatoes – let everything in the pot simmer for 2-3 minutes
- Add all the spices, mix it all up and let everything simmer for 3-4 minutes
- Add water enough for the potatoes to just about peek above the waterline
- Close the pressure cooker and cook for 10 minutes (Instant Pot Duo: High pressure + Medium heat)
- When the pressure cooker goes off after 10 minutes, leave it off the heat for 5 more minutes. Patience, my friend, is key.
- Curry is ready!
A note on method: Wash the potatoes before chopping if you want slightly richer curry. If you wash after, some of the starch will be washed away and you’ll get a lighter curry. Also, the size of the potato chunks will affect the cooking time. Medium chunks, slightly bigger than a 6 sided die is optimal. Larger pieces will require longer time and smaller pieces will be shorter. Although if its too small it might turn into mush.
Peanut oil, if you can find it is the best. Next best is cotton-seed oil. After that is the sunflower. Last is olive oil. Don’t ask, it is what it is and it does make a difference. If you’re worried about cholesterol/health, maybe workout harder that day or walk extra 5000 steps 😊. You can always reduce the amount of oil that you add too.
You can change the amount of water you add depending on how thick you want the curry. I like it runny. If you find yours too runny, just burn off excess water after. Having said that, if you’re using a pressure cooker, you need to add enough water for the steam to build up and be under pressure so don’t skimp on it too much! My advice would be to start with the level principle I mentioned, see how you like it and keep reducing it slightly until you find your balance.
Also pre-boiling the water will significantly reduce the cooking time. As for the peppers and chillis, I like to add them just before closing the lid of the pressure cooker. This way it keeps all the smell inside as the curry is cooking, enhancing the flavour. If you add it to the oil earlier, it’ll smell great but the curry won’t be at its best.
Thank you for taking time to read through my recipe. I didn’t just want to drop in the ingredients and method, I wanted to make sure you know why certain things are the way they are so that you can build on it and make it better.
Let me know how you get on!