Anday Aloo ka Salan is a comforting vegetarian Pakistani curry that relies on simple ingredients for beautiful flavours. Those fried eggs? They're a bonus you cannot resist!
My friend Shayma from over @spicespoon said a thing in an Instagram reel recently that struck me. She said that while we glorify the power of comfort food we often gloss over the discomfort it came from.
Anday Aloo ka Salan is one of the first things I learnt how to "recook" in Canada. I learnt it over very many phone calls with a beloved relative whose been a big part of my life and support system ever since. This salan reminds me of those frantic lonely times, in that tiny apartment with it's glass walls, looking out onto a big city where I felt brutally alone.
It also reminds me of so many happier times - like the bustle of the kitchen table at home in my mothers green tiled kitchen. It was always my personal mission to get one egg, two potatoes and the perfect amount of raita.
I often make this salan when I am low on groceries because it is such a lovely change from the usual fare and I always have the ingredients for it!
A Little Step By Step
Like many curries Anday Aloo ka Salan relies on an onion based gravy. It get's it's lovely aroma from the unusual (for Pakistani cooking) addition of methi dana or fenugreek seeds early in the cooking process.
Okay here is the plain truth folks. If you want your salan to be super smooth, here are your options.
1.) Add about a cup and a half of hot water to the masala after sauteing the tomatoes and then leave it covered and on a brisk simmer for 20 minutes. Reduce it, saute it, and the onion will break down.
2.) Add the water to the pot after tomatoes and use an immersion blender to smoothen out your curry. Don't overdo it, we want to keep some of that classic salan texture.
Anday Aaloo ka Salan: Tips for Managing Oil
Before we get started, I think it is pretty evident that curries are oil heavy. That unfortunately is the nature of the beast. If you want to understand why check out this post on Mastering Pakistani Cooking.
If you need to get cooking soon then let's just say this: DO NOT skimp on the oil at the beginning of the recipe. Instead drain excess oil off the top when you are done cooking. As your dish cools it will rise to the top and then you can gently tip it out or blot it with paper towels.
Must we fry the eggs?
The frying of the boiled egg – as funny as that sounds – makes this Anday Aaloo ka Salan a little extra special, but feel free to skip it if you want. If you do fry them then just place the eggs on a paper towel or a rack to drain excess oil.
How thick should the salan be?
That my friend is upto you. I prefer a thicker shorba with chapati, but my husband likes it best with rice and a thinner curry.
Want more curry inspiration? Here are some other favourites!
Made this recipe? Leave a rating below! Want to share your recreation? Tag me on instagram @flourandspiceblog - Look forward to seeing your yummy food!
Anday Aaloo ka Salan
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- Pinch of Methi/Fenugreek Seeds
- Two small-medium sized Onions
- 1 tbsp Ginger Paste
- 1 tbsp Garlic Paste
- 1 ½ tsp Salt
- 1 ½ tsp Red Chilli Powder
- 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 Tomato
- 2 Medium Potatoes
- 1 sprig Curry Leaves
- 4-5 Green Chillies
- ½ cup Cilantro chopped
- Juice of ½ a Lemon
- 6 boiled eggs
- Additional oil for frying the eggs
- Take a medium sized stock pot and put it on the stove at medium-high heat. Pour in your oil; it should coat the base of the pot. If it does not then add more, remember we can get rid of it later.
- When the oil is hot toss in your fenugreek seeds, let them sizzle for a minute and then add your finely chopped onions.
- When the onions become lightly golden at the edges then add your garlic and ginger pastes and let it cook for another 30 seconds
- Add the dry spices and cook for another 30 seconds
- Now it is tomato time, add it in, and cook until it becomes part of the onion paste until – you guessed it – the oil rises to the top.
- If you want a curry with a smooth consistency then blitz the mix in a blender now along with a little water. Or use an immersion blender, traditional method in notes.
- Add your potatoes, give it a quick stir and then add two cups of hot water, the curry leaves, and the green chillies.
- Bring it to a boil, then drop the heat and leave it to simmer for 15-20 minutes depending on how quickly your potatoes cook.
- Now put about an inch of oil in a frying pan – preferably one for which you can locate a similarly sized lid. Heat the oil and when it is nice and hot then gingerly and from a distance put in your eggs. Spluttering will ensue.
- Cover it up and let it do its thing for two minutes, then lift the lid, use tongs to rotate the eggs, cover it up and cook for another two minutes. Keep doing this until most of the surface area of the egg is golden brown. Then remove from the pan and keep aside.
- Check potatoes for doneness. If you want to really intensify the flavours then turn the heat up and cook till the infamous oil rises again, add the cilantro, lemon juice, and any additional water to thin the curry out.
- Add the eggs, adjust seasoning.