Oriyarasoi is on twitter !

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Dahi Bara - Ghuguni - Alu dum (Cuttack Style)

'Dahibara-Ghuguni-Aludum' is probably the most popular street food in Odisha after the ubiquitous Gupchup. Actually the two belong to different regions of the State, the Gupchup being a specialty in the Western parts while the former is more popular around the State capital. During my childhood years in Rourkela, we never saw this delicacy being sold on the streets. Visiting relatives from Bhubaneshwar would sometimes mention this and we would wonder why curries like alu dum and ghuguni need to be paired with dahi vadas. But as most of them had very high regards for the yummy 'Gupchup', we never bothered to find out.

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

Ingredients -

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)

Preparation -
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.

Cooking -

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.

For the ghuguni: Wash and put the soaked yellow peas in a cooker along with chopped potato, salt and turmeric powder. Cook for 2 whistles. Remove and keep aside to cool.

Heat oil in a deep vessel. When it starts smoking, add the cumin seeds and bay leaf. Wait till it splutters, and then add onion pieces and chopped coriander stems. Fry the onion for about 2-3 mins and then add ginger-garlic paste. Cook till raw smell goes away.

Add the tomatoes, salt and turmeric powder. Fry for about 5 mins or till the tomatoes turn mushy. Add the cumin powder, coriander powder and chilli powder. Stir fry for 2 mins and then add the boiled peas. Fry on Medium High for 3-4 minutes.

Add 2 cups hot water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 8-10 minutes on Low flame. Add the garam masala, mix well and remove from flame.

For the Alu Dum: Wash and cook the potatoes for 1-2 whistles . Allow steam to escape before opening lid. Peel the potatoes and cut into two.

Heat the oil in wok. Add the potatoes and fry for a few minute till they turn light brown. Remove and keep aside.

Add the cumin seeds, bay leaves, cardamom and cloves and fry for 20 seconds. Add the grated onion along with the GG paste. Fry till raw smell goes away. 

Add all the powdered masalas and fry for 1 minute. Add curd and fry till oil separates. Add the potatoes and fry along with masala for 1-2 minutes. Add 1 cup boiling water and bring to boil.

Simmer on low for 6-7 minutes before removing from flame. 

The toppings:

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!!!!!


  1. wow! thanks ,it reminds me my child hood,I will try it out so that my husband & my daughter can taste it, thanks again.

  2. After watching this food varieties I got watery mouth and want to try this just now. I am going to eat it now as this is also lunch time for me.

  3. Omg, hard to resist to this beautiful dishes, feel like inviting myself to ur place..

  4. Plan to visit Blore sometime Priya....I too can learn some baking tips from you!!

  5. U r welcome Bishnu, do try it and let me know how your family liked it..................

  6. Wonderful preparation.. great job :)

  7. My parents are from Cuttack and I spent many summers there while growing up and huge part of the fun was to sneak out with cousins to taste the delightful street food! This recipe makes me so nostalgic :-) Thanks for sharing.

  8. Oh my goodness, this looks delicious! I’m definitely making Dahi Bara! thanks for sharing!

  9. I have grown up in the silver city Cuttack and love the place more than any other place in the world. And yes, dahibara-aloodum was the most delicious part of my growing up years :). Loved your recipe. I often make dahibara for all important occasions. And it's an instant hit with my south indian neighbours. Thanks for publishing this beauty :).

    Cheers !

  10. Hey gr8 to know that you are from Rourkela too my birthplace and home town for 27 years and Like you I also love the gupchup of Rourkela. I have visited several places and studied in Bangalore and Delhi but could never ever find that taste of our Bihari gupchup walas of Rourkela. I somehow could bring out the taste of masala but couldnot. Get the taste of the pani. Can u plz post that recipe too plzzzz

  11. Hi nice to know that u are from Rourkela too and I bet Rourkela gupchup tastes the best. I have been to so many placesnd tasted panipuri everywhere including kolkatta, Bihar. Forget about Delhi,Mumbai &Bangalore not even BBSR. Some places it was good but no comparision to the Rourkela gupchup walas.
    I could almost replicate the masala but could not do the pani. Can you post the gupchup Rourkela style especially the pani if possible.

    1. Nice to know that someone from Rkl is reading my posts!! Can u plz refer to my post on Gupchup for the info you need? I have tried to replicate the Rourkela style pani in it :)


  12. Hey ,you from rkl..omg the world is such a small place...nice to know a Odiya,Rourkela fellow food blogger...and yes am surely going to try the gupchup recipe of yours..:))

  13. Thanks. Seems to be the best recipe. Thanks for the meticulous recipe.

  14. Thanks 4 d receipe....its looking yummy....

  15. Where to get vada and aalu chop(Odia Style) in Hyderabad?

  16. And please do tell me where to get chatua in Hyderabad?

    1. In Hyd you will not get the kind of chatua that we find in BBSR. Only the plain version or sattu can be found in many of the supermarkets. But I will be posting the recipe for a very tasty version that one can make at home. Please keep watching this space for the blog post.

  17. Sorry I cant help you with the info as I am from Blore. But when I was in Hyd (4 yrs back), there were a few shops in Miyapur/madhapur that sold Odia snacks


Featured Post

Green Papaya Laddoos (SugarFree recipe)

Mom is undoubtedly the dessert specialist at home. God forbid, if she takes to blogging, she could give a lot of folks a run for their mone...