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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Uttarakhand Cuisine ~ Aloo Ke Gutke

Indian state: Uttarakhand
Capital city: Dehradun
Original inhabitants: Kols
Official languages: English and Sanskrit
Native languages: Hindi, Garhwali, Kumaoni, Jaunsari
Widely Grown Crops: Wheat, Basmati rice, sugarcane and others
Commercially grown fruits: Apples, oranges, plums, pears, peaches and litchis

The word "Uttarakhand" literally means the northern part. It was also the ancient Hindu name for the central stretch of the Himalayas. The state, formerly called as Uttaranchal is relatively a new Indian state formed by splitting the state of Uttar Pradesh into two. The state is 93% mountainous and the northern parts are covered by Himalayan peaks and glaciers. Uttarakhand is composed of Garhwal and Kumaon divisions and the native people of the state are generally called either Garhwali or Kumaoni, depending upon their origin in either the Kumaon or Garhwal region.

The state is important for Hindus from a religious point of view as it is the home for the holiest Hindu shrines. Hindu pilgrims have been visiting the region over centuries, in the hopes of attaining salvation and getting rid of bad karma. Two of the most holy rivers in Hinduism - the Ganga and the Yamuna originate in Uttarakhand at Gangotri and Yamunotri, respectively. Uttarakhand has many tourist spots due to it's location in the Himalayas. There are many ancient temples, forest reserves, national parks, hill stations and mountain peaks that attract tourists. While places like Haridwar and Rishikesh are important for Hindus, Hemkund is an important pilgrim center for the sikhs.

The food here is simple and tasty. Traditionally, the food of Uttarakhand was primarily cooked over charcoal / burning wood. Vegetarian food is mainly preferred and rice is the staple food. Different varieties of lentils are consumed. The medium of cooking is mustard oil / ghee. The Kumouni region sparsely use dairy products in their cooking. Fannah, kafuli, arsa, phaanu, ras, badi, gulgula, mandua ki roti are some of the popular dishes of the region. And if you are looking to add a new potato dish to your repertoire, here is a tasty and simple dish from the Uttarakhand state called "aloo ke gutke".

4 - 5 potatoes, peeled and cubed / sliced lengthwise (About 3 cups cubed potatoes)
3 tbsp mustard oil (I used canola oil.)
1 tsp cumin seeds
3 red chillies
2 pinches asafoetida powder
1/8 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp red chili powder
Salt to taste
Minced cilantro to garnish

* Mix coriander, turmeric and chili powders in about 2 - 3 tbsp of water and keep it aside.
* Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds and red chillies. When cumin starts to turn brownish, add asafoetida and the above spice paste. saute for about 30 seconds and add the potato cubes. Combine the whole mixture well with a spatula. Add salt and a small quantity of water if needed. Cook until the potatoes are done.
* Garnish with cilantro and serve hot along with steamed rice / rotis / puris.

1. Usually I don't add this much of oil while preparing potato curry and so I found the quantity of oil in the recipe was enough to cook potatoes and didn't add any water at all to the recipe.
2. I added the chili powder and the coriander powder just at the end, without mixing it with water.


Unknown said...

aloo ke gutke is the hero today!! so delicious and so elegant.

Priya Suresh said...

Same pinch, i did the same and loved having this delicious aloo ke gukte with curd rice.Makes me hungry again.

Srivalli said...

Wow another Aloo ke gutke!..very nicely done and presented..

Harini R said...

Simple and very popular, right?

Pavani said...

That aloo gutke looks like a perfect snack.

Unknown said...

aloo gutke is simple and yummy. can never go wrong with aloo..

Nalini's Kitchen said...

Very nicely done..another aloo ke gutke of the day...

cookingwithsapana said...

Same pinch ,very nicely done all
Ok ke Gutke...

Usha said...

Even I made this. Simple and tasty curry.

Padmajha said...

The second pics looks so tempting! Potato in any way is sure to be a hit!

Padmajha said...

The second pics looks so tempting! Potato in any way is sure to be a hit!

Archana said...

The pics are so tempting. Potatoes will taste awesome.

Chef Mireille said...

popular recipe for the state - looks so good

vaishali sabnani said...

Potatoes in any form are welcome...and this state cuisine is actually very delicious..loved the aalos and your clicks!

Day Outing Packages Near Around Delhi said...

Uttarakhand Camps Comment Thanks for sharing good information !