I adore chilli chicken – give me chilli chicken for breakfast, lunch, dinner and I would be a happy soul. Methinks, that can be said for chilli potato too now.
Chilli chicken is an Indo-Chinese dish popular among the masses. Found at street-side food joints being served on flimsy plastic plates or at a fine dining restaurant, looking too pretty to be eaten, the chilli chicken is everyone’s heartthrob.
Much to my surprise, and the delight of vegetarian friends, I found out chilli chicken has a cousin, the chilli potato. Manu, the owner of our accommodation in Munnar, served his version of the chilli potato on a cool summer evening, paired with a glass of wine. My taste buds did the jiggy-whiggy as I savoured the crispy piece of potato, coated with the sauces, the flavours of garlic and ginger taking me to taste heaven.
True to myself, I demanded he share the recipe. I might have scared the gentle chap, but he did send across his version of the chilli potato a few days ago.
I’ve made some changes to his version – mostly in the proportion of sauces because my father can’t handle too much of the tanginess. Which means you can do the same and better! Like your kitchen and you be the boss!
This is sure to be your favourite go-to recipe, helping you tackle the kiddie snack times, quick weeknight dinners or appetisers for the weekend party.
- 3 Potatoes (medium sized)
- 4 tablespoons Cornstarch/cornflour
- ½ tablespoon Garlic (finely chopped)
- ½ tablespoon Ginger (finely chopped)
- 2 Green Chillies (chopped)
- 2 stems Spring Onion (finely chopped)
- ¾ cup Onion (cubed, separated)
- ½ cup Capsicum (cubed)
- 1 tablespoon Chilli sauce
- 2 tablespoons Soya sauce
- 2 tablespoons Tomato sauce
- ½ tablespoon Vinegar (optional)
- ¾ tablespoon Red Chilli sauce (optional)
- ½ tablespoon Pepper
- Sugar (a pinch)
- Water (as required)
- Salt (per taste)
- Oil (as required)
Peel and chop potatoes into long slices, the kind that end up being 'French Fries'. Dump these in a saucepan filled with 3 cups of water, a tablespoon of salt and bring to boil.
Remove the potatoes once they are slightly cooked. Strain and set aside.
In a bowl, mix chilli sauce, pepper, ½ teaspoon salt, 1½ tablespoon cornstarch. Whisk well, add to the potatoes and coat each piece well.
Heat 4 tablespoons oil in a non-stick pan. Once the oil is hot enough, fry the potatoes till they are crispy. You can even deep fry the potatoes.
In a separate pan, heat 1-2 tablespoon oil. Add ginger, garlic, green chilli and half the chopped spring onion. Sauté.
Add the onion, capsicum and cook till onion is slightly pink and capsicum has shrivelled a bit. We don’t want to lose the crunchiness of the veggies.
In a bowl, mix the soya sauce, tomato sauce, vinegar and the red chilli sauce. Whisk through and add to the vegetables. Stir well.
Dilute the remaining cornstarch in ½ cup of water and slowly pour into the vegetables. Stir constantly. I say gradually because the recipe calls for a sauce thick enough to coat the potatoes but you may want some gravy. In case of the latter, you will need less of the cornstarch mix.
Add the potatoes, remaining spring onions and mix gently, ensuring the potatoes are coated with the sauce. Adjust the seasoning, add a dash of sugar to cut the tanginess and serve hot.
- Mix all your sauces and keep them ready before you start. This recipe requires you to be quick – a miss and you will likely end up with burnt or congealed sauce.
- Cornflour/cornstarch, as I’ve noticed, tend to differ as per company. Some do the trick in a teaspoon and some need more. Choose the brand you are comfortable with and change the ratio if needed. The sauce has to coat the potatoes. Enough.
- The vinegar and sauces tend to sour matters. If you don’t like the taste, chuck the vinegar or reduce the amount.
- I ended up adding honey instead of sugar once. Honey chilli potato tastes nice too!