Potato Kurma ~ Curry in a Pressure Cooker
For the second day of this 3 day marathon, I have a very simple kurma or curry cooked in a pressure cooker. At my home, both at my in-laws and at my parents, shorva is very common curry (gravy) unlike the kurmas. Shorva is a gravy curry, not very thick, not very thin and more like a stew, in consistency. It is served with plain or flavored rice or with any Indian bread. I usually make shorvas with both vegetables and with meats. This time I wanted to cook a curry with thick gravy and made this potato kurma. Also, I use either yogurt or milk in my shorva, with/out tomatoes. For this gravy I used only tomato and poppy seeds + coconut to thicken the gravy. Poppy seeds and coconut powder is also used in shorva recipes but I usually skip both these ingredients.
I usually cook most of my curries in a saucepan as most of the vegetables cook very fast and so does the chicken we get in the US. I wanted to cook a vegetarian gravy and as I was considering all the vegetables that I could cook in a pressure cooker, potatoes seemed liked a very good choice, as they take some time to cook on a stove top. The beauty about pressure cooking is that the cooking time of the vegetables or the meats is cut down drastically. And I might add potato was indeed the best choice of vegetable to cook in a pressure cooker. The curry was done in matter of minutes once I sautéed the masala. This potato kurma or curry can be served with plain or flavored rice or with any Indian bread.
Total Time: 25 – 30 minutes + at least 10 minutes resting time
Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 – 25 minutes
- ½ – ¾ tsp. Poppy Seeds
- 1 tbsp. Dry Coconut Slices
- 2-4 Whole Cashew Nuts broken into small pieces (opt. I did not use it this time)
- 1 Cardamom (can use whole or only the seeds)
- 1 Clove
- ¼” Cinnamon Stick
- ½ tsp. Shah Jeera or Cumin (I used Shah Jeera)
- 2 tbsp oil
- ½ – 2/3 cups chopped Onion or 1 small – medium Onion
- 1 tbsp. (approx.) Mint chopped (opt. I didn’t use it this time)
- 2 tsp.Ginger Garlic Paste
- 2-3 tsp. Coriander Powder
- ¼ Turmeric
- 1 tsp Chili Powder (adjust to once tolerance level)
- 1 – 1 ¼ tsp. Salt (adjust to taste)
- ¾ cup Tomatoes chopped or 1 medium Tomato chopped (I used vine ripe tomato but any variety works)
- 3 – 4 small Green Chilies cut vertically into two pieces
- 2 medium sized Red Potatoes, approx. 275 – 300 grams (I used red but any variety potatoes can be used)
- Spice Powder
- 1 – 1½ cups Water
- Chopped Cilantro for garnish
- Dry roast the all the ingredients listed under spice powder for couple of minutes until spices are lightly roasted. Cool the spices and grind them in a spice grinder. I made a dry powder but if one wishes, they could add some water to make a smooth paste.
- Chop onions, tomatoes, mint and cut the green chilies. Peel and cut each potato into 8 – 12 cubes, depending on your preference. I cut each potato into 12 pieces.
- Heat oil in a pressure pan. I used a 3 liter junior pressure pan. A 2 liter cooker would also work for this quantity of gravy.
- Once oil is hot, add onions and saute until onions are light golden brown. This should take about 4-5 minutes. Cook on medium high flame. On my burner medium high was the right level of flame for this cooker.
- Add mint, if using and saute for a few seconds.
- Add ginger garlic paste and cook until the saw smell is gone.
- Add coriander powder, chili powder, salt, turmeric and give it a good stir.
- Add tomatoes, mix, cover and cook for a minute or two until tomatoes are soft and mushy.
- Add potatoes, spice powder, green chilies and cook for another minute or two until spices are well coated to the potatoes.
- Add 1 cup of water, mix well, close the pressure cooker and cook for couple of whistles. OR cook for 1 whistle on medium high – high and 2 minutes on low. I did the former. Turn of the flame and let the pressure in the cooker subside. This would take at least 10 minutes.
- Open the cooker, taste test the curry and adjust the seasoning. If adding spices, then turn on the stove and cook it for few more minutes. If salt is the only seasoning going into the kurma, no need to cook it again. Also check the consistency. If the gravy is too thick, add some water and cook the kurma for few more minutes. I did not add any water to my gravy, although my family prefers a bit thinner gravy.
- Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve hot with plain or flavored rice or roti or any Indian bread.
- I skipped cashew nuts in this time but if using, the gravy would be a bit thick and might need to add some water. Therefore, after the pressure subsides, add some water to desired consistency and cook the kurma for few minutes.