Slow Cooked Potato Curry Dum Aloo by Moti Mahal Delux

Feb 19, 2013 by



The Upper East Side is kicking it up notches. Within the last couple of years, eating and drinking locales like, The Arlington Club, Hosppoda, Jones Wood Foundry and Vegan Divas have quietly taken their spots and started pulling in a fresh crowd from all over the city (yes, including downtowners!!). Over the last few months, it happened again, this time, with a restaurant that upholds Indian culinary providence, a rich Moghul past and quite frankly with an experience that sends you home distracted for days. It is called Moti Mahal Delux, an outpost of the original Moti Mahal in Darya Ganj, Delhi.

As I sat with restaurant owner, Gaurav Anand, he shared his promise to bring a regal bygone era to life in NYC through his restaurant, Moti Mahal Delux. The restaurant allows New Yorkers to experience a cultural trail from Persia to India by way of the Moghul dynasty – a dynasty that contributed to India’s most cherished dishes such as, buttery onyx –colored lentils, breads stuffed with nuts, meats or just butter and rice and vegetable dishes that are finished in the tandoor along with skewered meats and vegetables.



It would be a no-brainer to talk about Moti Mahal Delux’ stellar dishes like, the neon-free tandoori chickens or the saliva-inducing lamb chops, both of which are organic and locally sourced, but for me, money’s on the Dum Aloo.

Dum Aloo is a  dish of potatoes cooked in a moderately-spiced gravy. And like all things royal, there are nuts pastes, dried fruits and whiffs of cardamom and fennel.  Whilst the ingredients are key players of the dish, it is the process of ‘Dum’ cooking that coaxes it all to its full potential. Dum is the technique of roasting and then steaming. The potatoes and other ingredients are cooked on high heat and then covered with a lid and some dough to tape it around the sides creating ‘um’. This is when the flavors mature as they cook in their own steam, none of which is lost to the world outside.



This is as soulful as a dish can get and when it is ready, you are left with fork tender potatoes in a light tomato sauce and a Sunday afternoon nap.


Recipe Courtesy Of Moti Mahal Delux for Dum Aloo


8 medium potatoes

100 ml oil

1 tsp. caraway seeds

2 chopped onions

1 tsp. black cardamom,

5 tbsp. raisins, pounded

5 tbsp. cashew nuts

Salt to taste


For the curry

1 medium-sized onion, finely diced

1/4 cup curd

1 cup tomato puree

4 tsp. ginger-garlic paste

3 tsp. almond paste

1 tsp. fennel seeds

4 green cardamom

6 cloves

½ tsp. mace powder

4 tsp. red chili powder

2 tsp. cumin powder

1 tbsp. coriander powder

Salt to taste

Oil for frying

1 sheet puff pastry



Heat oven at 350 degrees

1)   Peel the potatoes, slice off the tops and scoop out the centers.

2)    Fry the shells and the centers to a golden brown. Allow the centers to cool, then mash.
Heat the oil in a wok, sauté the caraway seeds and the aniseed.

3)   Add onions and sauté till transparent (in an oven proof pan). Add the fried potato centers, cardamom powder, raisins, and the cashew nuts.

4)   Stir-fry for a few minutes. Season with salt and keep aside. Stuff the potato shells with the prepared mixture and keep aside.
For the curry
Heat the oil in a thick bottomed pan and sauté onions till transparent.

5)   Add curd, tomato puree, ginger-garlic paste, almond paste, aniseed, mace, caraway seeds, green cardamoms, cloves, red chilli paste, cumin powder, coriander powder, and salt. Stir fry for 10 minutes.
Place the stuffed potatoes in the curry. Cover the lid and seal the sides with puff pastry

6)   Finish cooking in the oven for 20 minutes. Serve with naan or rice.

Related Posts


Share This


  1. Dorren

    I am from South Africa and was sent to Delhi for 2 years – Moti Mahal became an extension of my kitchen..well that kitchen now extends to NYC where I now live. I have been ordering from there ever since it opened and I can tell you how much it is like the original in India. I have tried the Dum Aloo which I love, but I also love the Barah Kebab – perhaps Mr. Anand will give you the recipe for that too :)

  2. Joy

    A stew with potatoes – Why didn’t anyone out West think of that before!!! OMG, I am so there. I will definitely try this out..I might skip on the pastry step but barring a slightly lesser flavor, I think it will still work. Lovely pictures too…you have made me very hungry

  3. Lauren

    I bet I could smoosh those potatoes against the roof of my mouth with my tongue. What a technique!!

  4. Tonia

    Wow, could this be done with any other vegetable? I am not a fan of potatoes.
    Perhaps butternut squash? If so, what would I do differently?


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>