The Sensitive Kitchen

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Chana Aloo Methi Kofta

Today we read a book in which the characters were pictured eating spaghetti with some suspicious-looking brown balls on top. Adri inquired as to whether they were meat and I said yes, probably, but that all kinds of foods came in ball shapes: her Quorn meatless meatballs, falafel, even kofta. She had never been exposed to kofta before and promptly requested some for dinner. Obviously I'm not making malai kofta (it contains loads of paneer and yogurt), so this was my off-the-cuff version.

2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
1 can garbanzo beans
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 egg (can substitute a few tbsp yogurt, or even some potato cooking liquid)
1 tennis-ball-sized chunk cooked shredded methi, squeezed very dry
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro

Peel, chop and boil the potatoes in salted water until just tender. Drain and transfer to a mixing bowl. Mash with a potato masher until relatively smooth. Set aside.

Process chickpeas in food processor until texture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Transfer most of this to the mixing bowl, then add spices, salt, baking powder and egg to the remaining chickpeas. Process until smooth. Stir in methi and cilantro; mix well.

With oiled hands, roll into 40 key-lime-sized balls. Bake at 375 degrees for 35-45 minutes, flipping the balls about halfway through baking.

Serve with rice and a sauce made with onions, masala and coconut milk. Or, if you're feeling lazy, serve with your favorite Trader Joe's simmer sauce.

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