Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Simple Spuds

Did you know that the word 'spud' was thought to have been an acronym for the Society for the Prevention of An Unwholesome Diet? I've come across just one person who didn't like potatoes but according to Wikipedia, such a group as the S.P.U.D. actually existed in Britain. The etymology of spud, though, is traced to a word used to represent a variety of digging tools. Read more about it here.

I don't cook potatoes often myself, but usually have some in stock so that I can rustle up a quick potato-something if I run out of ideas, if not run out of supplies. When I see packs of small potatoes and they pass my sniff-and-feel test (because they could be hiding smelly, rotten ones inside), I usually get one and bake them in the oven with some olive oil and chilli flakes or make a quick stir-fry.

The one I have for you today was sauteed with turmeric and chilli flakes in mustard oil.

Here's how it's made:

Small/baby potatoes, boiled and (optional) peeled: 1/2 pound or 500 gm, approx.
Mustard oil: 2-3 tsp
Mustard seed: 1 tsp
Cumin seed/Jeera: 1/2 tsp
Nigella seed/Kalonji: 1 tsp (but less, if you like)
Fenugreek seed/Methi: 1/4 tsp
Red chilli flakes: 1-2 tsp (or according to taste)
Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
Salt: To taste

Heat the mustard oil on medium flame.

Add the mustard seed and once it begins to pop, add the rest of the ingredients, (ending with the fenugreek) listed below it.

Now add the potatoes, salt and turmeric, and toss till they are well coated with the spices.

Remove from fire.

Removing one or two of the tempering ingredients will make for a more mellow taste. You can choose to use just the cumin or just the nigella too.

Here's one I made with a very exotic spice, and that reminds me I should make it again.

This one above was a stunner (if you like spicy food).

There are other potato recipes on my blog, but here's a vegetarian one that I've forgotten about - I must try it again.


This comment has been removed by the author.

My son is great spud fan, He asks me almost everyday to cook a spicy one!
Btw great going and happy to see u here :)


Oh, this is pure potato love! I like potatoes but for some reason happen not to cook it as often. I like it any-which-way. The simplest way we make it is to slice it thinly and saute with onions, garlic and tomatoes; cook covered on low heat until cooked through and then start to "catch" stick to the bottom of the pan (the best part I think) :) and it is eaten with rice and some pickle. Or with roti for dinner or breakfast.

Jaya Wagle

Am a spud lover since I started solids. Love them any which way but have never tried with mustard oil. What was the exotic blend Sra? That looks really good.

BTW, your pics are really good on this blog. What changed?

Jaya Wagle

Just checked the other posts too and now I know what the exotic mix is. You are making me explore a lot of links, aren't you? It is good to read all that I missed before.


I love potatoes and the method they are cooked in really does not matter :)


Cham, thanks! Nothing like a simple, well-done potato fry.
Cynthia, yes, that sounds familiar too - will explore your blog for that recipe!
Jaya, er ... I have some good days (re photography), nothing has changed. And links ... heh heh, that was the idea!
Rachel, I think I prefer them dry to gravied tho' I have no strong likes or dislikes.


I like the looks of both, especially the spicy one. ;-)



I too cook potatoes very rarely. The last photo is really stunning...And I am drooling over the thouht of combining it with a piping hot rasam sadam :)


Paz, yeah, that photo's dear to my heart!
Ni, I would just eat them by themselves :)

Lena Rashmin Raj

mmmm..last snap is too tempting..amazing snap dear.. :)


Looks really yummy and a fabulous recipe..


Those spuds look gorgeous n delicious....very inviting!


I am an ardent spud-lover by birth! and love the last pic. Now, time to check what that all 'exotic' stuff when into it :)

~ Siri


This looks divine. I prefer sweet potatoes myself, I'm thinking they might be a good substitute for this dish, for people who might not like spuds.


looks tempting!!!! like potatoes all time favourite,,


Lena, Arti, Aruna, Siri, Sathya, thanks :)
Harriet, I should try this with sweet potatoes, have a couple at home right now!

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