It was only after I finished college (or maybe sometime in the final year) that these cycle-wallahs with their big pots of dahibara and smaller pots of ghuguni/alu dum began to make their presence felt in my hometown. I have to admit that I was quite skeptical about it in those days. And maybe that's the reason I am not so nostalgic about it. My husband in comparison is completely nuts about it. He can have it for breakfast, lunch and also dinner. Nowadays you can find it in every nook and corner of Odisha and everyone keeps raving about it ( I guess the internet wave is behind its popularity to quite an extent. Check out FB.) . The potato crisis in recent times which had the cost of 'Gupchup' heading North came as another boon for this road side delicacy. With an affordable price tag starting at Rupees 5 per plate even the poor could afford it. An added advantage is that it packs in quite a good quantity for the price.
So, here is a very delayed post on Odisha's cult favorite( A big thanks to hubby for pointing out that it had been missing ). Schedule it on a weekend as this is quite an elaborate process. In order to save time, I would suggest doubling the quantity of masala being prepared for the alu dum and removing half of it before adding the potatoes. This masala can be used for preparing the ghuguni.
Read on for the recipe:
Preparation Time - 1 hour 30 mins
For the Dahibara
- 1 cup Urad dal
- 1-2 green chillis (chopped),
- 1 1/2 cup curd (slightly sour preferably)
- 1/2 roasted cumin powder
- 1/3 red chilli powder
- a pinch of baking powder
- 1 tbsp semolina
- 1/5 tsp black salt( kala namak )
- salt to taste
- oil ( for frying )
- For tempering -
- few curry leaves
- 1-2 dry red chillis
- 2 pinch asafoetida
- few mustard-cumin seeds
For the Alu Dum
- 12-15 baby potatoes or 1 big potato
- 3 tsp grated onion
- 1/2 tsp Ginger garlic paste
- 4-5 cloves
- 1 small bay leaf
- 1 green cardamom
- 1/5 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp yogurt
- 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
- 1/3 tsp coriander powder
- 1/5 tsp garam masala (optional)
- 1 1/2 tbsp
For the Ghuguni
- 1 1/2 cup Yellow peas
- 1 medium sized potato
- 1 small tomato
- 1 medium sized onion
- 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/3 tsp cumin powder
- 1/3 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp chilli powder
- 1/5 tsp garam masala powder
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tsp oil
- 1-2 tsp chopped coriander stems
- 1/3 tsp turmeric powder
- a pinch of baking powder (optional)
- salt to taste
For sprinkling on top:
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 bunch coriander leaves, finely chopped
- 5-6 green chillis, finely chopped
- 1 cup thin sev
- kala namak
- jeera lanka gunda (roasted cumin-chili powder)
For the Bara: Soak urad dal for 3-4 hours. Grind into a smooth paste. Add salt and allow to stand for 5-6 hours.Take the batter in a mixing bowl. Mix in the suji and baking powder into the batter. Whip it lightly to incorporate some air into the mix.
Add a little portion of the curd ( approx 2 tsp )to some warm water in a mixing bowl. Add a little salt and mix well.
For the Ghuguni: Soak the yellow peas overnight.
Cut the onion and tomato into small pieces. Peel the potato and cut into small sized cubes.
For the bara: Heat oil in a wok for frying baras. Take a spoonful of the batter and carefully add to the hot oil. Do this 6-7 times per batch. Fry on all sides till it turns brown . Remove the fried vadas and add to the curd water prepared earlier. Allow the vadas to rest in the warm mixture for 1/2 hour.
Meanwhile, take the remaining curd in another bowl. Add salt, black salt, chilli powder, roasted cumin powder and chopped green chillis to it and beat gently to break any lumps. Add 2 1/2 cups water( you can add more if you like a thinner consistency ). Transfer the soaked baras into this curd mixture.
Heat 1 tsp oil in tempering pan. Add mustard seeds, broken red chilli, curry leaves and assfoetida. Pour this tempering over the dahi-baras. Keep aside for 3-4 hours.
Getting your act together. Its showtime.
Place a few baras (4-5 nos) on a plate along with some of the watery curd. Pour about 5-6 tbsp ghuguni over it followed by 3-4 tbsp alu dum.
Sprinkle finely chopped onion, coriander leaves, green chillis, kala namak, jeera-lanka powder and crispy sev on the chat.
The final product :
What are you waiting for ????????????? Dig IN!!!!!