Friday, August 24, 2007

Alu Paratha

It was the early nineties and the ladies had just started noticing the dating potential of yours truly. It was also a time when 'pubs' had just started turning up in the 411001 pin code. Black Cadillac (which is now closed) and Ten Downing Street with their 200 Rupee cover charge were the first to arrive. I have always been a non-drinker, but for some reason ladies would always insist on visiting the pubs. Even the ones that couldn't hold down their gimlets to save their lives. For a reasonably broke person such as myself, the 200 Rupee cover charge was a bit steep and left little to spend in the way of dinner. Thankfully, there was one great option, just down the street. Hip enough and cheap, too. Steaming hot, authentic Punjabi parathas at Nandu's. Crisp, flaky, cheap and downright delicious. Seating was optional and the waiter would bring your order right up to you. Whether you were parked in a car or just standing by on the footpath. One of the 15 varieties of parathas, a little yogurt on the side and it was heaven on the bonnet of your Fiat. The Alu paratha was by far the best among all the parathas they had. Nandu's has become somewhat of an institution in the Boat Club Rd. / Dhole Patil Rd. area. I still remember it as a humble little spot that fed young broke kids on a budget trying to entertain their respective ladies. And depending on the company you kept, it promised to be the one (and in some cases only) bright spot in your evening.

For Atta (dough)
2 cups Chappati atta (finely ground wheat flour)

1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp oil 

1/2 cup Milk 

Warm Water

For Filling
3 Boiled Potatoes
1 tsp crushed Garlic
1 tsp crushed Ginger
1/4 cup chopped Cliantro
4 Green Chilies chopped
Juice form 1/2 Lemon
Salt to taste

Using all the ingredients for dough, knead the dough
Mash the potatoes and add garlic, ginger, lemon juice, cilantro, chilies and salt
Take a golf ball sized portion of the dough
Flatten it with your hands and place 2 tsp filling in the centre
Enclose the filling in the dough and roll it into a thin roti using a rolling pin
Cook on a hot tawa (flat pan)
Serve with plain yogurt or tamrind chutney