Bombay bataka

This dish featured on famous Bradford vegetarian Indian restaurant Prashad’s very first menu and is their take on traditional Bombay potatoes.

"One of my regular customers at the restaurant ordered a portion of this every week for over a year, declaring it to be the best curry she had ever had!"

Ingredients

  • 3 medium red-skinned (or other waxy) potatoes
  • 25g dried tamarind (from a block)
  • 600ml boiling water
  • 3cm root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 75ml sunflower oil
  • 2-4 dried red chillies, snapped in half
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp brown mustard seeds
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida
  • 400g tinned peeled plum tomatoes, finely chopped or blended
  • 25g jaggery, cut in thin flakes (or demerara / soft brown sugar)
  • 1 tsp medium red chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1½ tsp turmeric
  • 1¼ tsp salt
  • 2 handfuls fresh coriander, rinsed and finely chopped
  • ¾ tsp garam masala

Method

  • Boil the potatoes in their skins for 40 minutes or so until a knife tip will slide in easily, then peel and cut in 2cm cubes.
  • Soak the dried tamarind in 200ml of the boiling water for 10 minutes, then pulp with your fingers and sieve the tamarind water in to a small bowl.
  • Crush the ginger with a pestle and mortar (or in a blender) to make a fine pulp.
  • Heat the oil in a large pan for a minute over a medium heat before adding the dried red chillies, cumin and mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds start to pop, reduce the heat to low and stir in the asafetida, blended tomatoes and jaggery. Stir over a low heat for a minute or so until the jaggery has dissolved. 
  • Increase the heat to high and stir in the tamarind water, crushed ginger, chilli powder, ground coriander, turmeric, salt, half the fresh coriander and the remaining 400ml of boiling water. 
  • Cover and cook for 10 minutes to bring the spices together and intensify the flavours. 
  • Add the garam masala and stir well – this is a strong flavour and needs to be thoroughly mixed in before you add the dish’s main ingredient. 
  • Stir in the potatoes gently to avoid breaking them up, then remove the pan from the heat, sprinkle with the remaining chopped coriander and leave to rest covered for at least 10 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse.