For me, this is a purely nostalgic recipe. I’ve looked at the recipe in my recipe book several times but I haven’t eaten/made these in like 10 years or so. I just like the memory of them! My granny made lovely pack potatoes for iftar in Ramadhan. It’s a cold rainy afternoon, so I thought I could do with some cheering up!
Pack potatoes are basically boiled potatoes with a filling of tangy chili paste, dipped in a gram flour batter and deep-fried.
Recipe: Pack Potatoes
Accompaniments: Ambli Chutney/Ketchup
- 6 small nugget potatoes or 3 regular sized Russet/white potatoes
- 3 Tbsp channa flour (chickpea/gram/besan flour)
- 1 Tbsp white flour
- 2 Tbsp red chili powder*
- 2 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice or as needed
- 1/4 tsp salt (or to taste)
- Oil for frying
* since I find the red chili powder too hot, I substitute it with 1 3/4 Tbsp of paprika powder and 1/4 Tbsp of red chili powder
- Boil the potatoes in its skin till a knife pierces through the potato easily. I used nugget potatoes and I needed to boil it for 18 mins. I like to use nugget potatoes since it results in the final product being round.
- When done, dip them in cool water and peel off the potato skin gently. Remove any eyes.
- If using the small potatoes, cut them in half (equally), keeping the top and bottom of each potato together (matching).
- If using the larger potatoes, quarter them, matching two quarters to make a half.
- In a bowl, mix the gram flour, white flour and salt. Add some water to make a batter. The consistency should be slightly more runny then a pancake batter. I like to make the batter salty, since I like salty potatoes.
- In another bowl, mix the red chili powder and lemon juice to make a very thick paste (so use lemon juice accordingly). Add a pinch of salt and mix thoroughly.
- Heat the oil in a wok or karai on medium-high heat. The oil should be deep enough to completely submerge the potato or at least come three-quarter way up.
- Put some chili paste on the potato half and join it with its other half. It will stay together since the chili paste is thick.
- Test the oil temperature by dropping a little of the gram flour batter into the oil. It should float up almost immediately.
- Dip the potato into the gram flour batter and place it into the oil gently.
- Gently splash some oil over the top of the potato if the oil does not completely submerge it.
- Fry till golden brown.
- Bloat on paper towels, best if served immediately.