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Monday, April 18, 2011

Crispy Indian-Chinese Garlic Chili Potatoes

This recipe yields 8 generous servings.

I love this dish, if you have soy sauce, and different variety of chinese chili sauce, garlic, ginger, potatoes and some veggies, in your pantry and fridge. You can prepare this dish and you can modify this any which way you like and can not go wrong with it. You don't have to add all the sauces that I added, if you have soy sauce, spicy chili sauce, ketch and honey that would do.

This is Indian version of Chinese appetizer snack, which is very popular in Indian Chinese restaurants.

What you need to do is follow my recipe for crispy homemade seasoned french fries to make the crispy potatoes. Then follow this recipe to make gravy for chili potatoes.

I added mushroom, green peppers and red onions with chili potatoes, but you may omit these veggies entirely and just make the potatoes in this gravy, or you may add more veggies like baby corn, water chestnuts and cashews.

Here is how I made it this time.

To make the potatoes fries you will need following ingredients:

* 8 potatoes washed thoroughly and cut not as thin as fries but like thick chunks.

* 1 cup crispy fry mix (or you can use 1/2 cup of all purpose flour, 1/2 cup of rice flour, and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda mixed together to substitute crispy fry mix.

* 1 cup of corn starch

* 1 teaspoon garlic salt

* 1 teaspoon onion salt

* 1 tablespoon salt

* 1 tablespoon paprika

* 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

* 1 tablespoon cumin powder

* 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

* 3/4 cup lemon or lime juice

* You will need 1 large Ziploc bag

* Vegetable oil for deep frying

For gravy you will need following Ingredients:

* 2" piece of ginger peeled and chopped

* 20 cloves of garlic

* 10 pods of fresh red chili peppers (I used frozen from local Indian grocer)

* 2 medium green peppers chopped in to 1" chunks

* 1 pack (8oz) of mushrooms whole with stem removed

* 1 large red onion chopped in to chunks

* Juice from 2 fresh limes

* 2 tablespoon of sesame oil or any cooking oil

* 2 tablespoon sesame seeds

* 1/2 cup of soy sauce (you may use low sodium soy sauce)

* 1/2 cup of red garlic chili sauce

* 1/2 cup of Schezwan sauce

* 1/4 cup of Chinese 5 spice sauce

* 1 tablespoon of black pepper sauce

* 1/2 cup of honey

* 1 tablespoon of sugar

* 1/2 cup of Ketchup

* 1/2 cup of sweet chili sauce

* 1/4 cup of Teriyaki sauce (optional)

* 1/4 cup of Mango chutney (optional)

* 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper powder (or to taste)

* 1 tablespoon of paprika powder

* 1/2 cup of water

For garnishing you will need following ingredients:

* 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro leaves

* 1/4 cup of chopped spring onions with greens


To make crispy potatoes:

* Cut the potatoes in to short wedges/chunks (thicker than french fries), place them in water so they won't turn brown.

* Once you cut all the potatoes, drain all the water and transfer and spread them on a wide microwave safe dish or casserole.

* Cook them in Microwave (uncovered) on high power for 5 min.

* Take them out of Microwave and let them cool.

* Heat oil in a deep fryer at 400 degrees.

* While the oil is heating, mix all the flours, salt and spices in a large bowl till everything is incorporated.

* Transfer the flour mix in a large Ziploc bag.

* Transfer all the cut wedges in to this bag.

* Add lemon or lime juice.

* Zip seal the bag securely.

* Gently toss and coat all the spiced batter on potatoes with hands on outsides of sealed Ziploc bag.

* Once all the potatoes are coated well with batter, transfer by emptying the content of bag in a bowl or plate, add some water if needed to coat the potatoes evenly with batter.

* Deep fry the coated potatoes until golden brown and crispy.

* Remove and drain on paper towels and set aside.

To make gravy:

* Cut onions, mushrooms and green pepper in to chunks and coat them with fresh lime juice, set aside.

* In a food processor chop garlic, ginger and red chili pods to coarse paste.

* Heat oil on stove, when hot add sesame seeds, (you may also add cashew at this point) when these are light brown add chili garlic ginger paste and saute for 1 min.

* Add cayenne pepper, paprika and sugar, mix well.

* Add all the veggies and saute for 1 min.

* Add all the sauces, chutney, honey, ketchup and water, cook for 1 more min.

* Add crispy fried potatoes.

* Mix well, turn the heat off.

* Note that there is no need to add salt to this gravy, as all the sauces and the soy sauce will have enough salt plus the potato fries that you made earlier will have salt too, so there is no need to add sauce to the gravy.

* Garnish with chopped cilantro leaves and chopped spring onions.

* Serve hot as an appetizer or as light lunch with plain white rice.


* You can modify the amount of sweetness and heat according to your taste by adjusting the amount of sugar, Ketchup and hot sauces and hot peppers.

* You can make crispy baby corn and chili Paneer following same recipe.

* Note that most of these sauces that I used above are available at local Indian or Chinese grocers.

Recipe and Photographs by Surekha.

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