A brass bowl with aloo badi, a Manipuri dish of potatoes and little sundried nuggets of black gram lentil paste, on a purple background and book on the North East Indian cuisine alongside
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Aloo Badi Manipuri/ Bori Thongba/ Potato Lentil Nuggets Curry

Bori Thongba or Manipuri Aloo Badi, a curry from locally available ingredients such as chives, potatoes and urad dal badi (sundried nuggets from soaked, ground black gram lentils) and heiribob or Manipuri citrus peel
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 2 people
Author: Sujata Shukla

Ingredients

For Frying the Badi

  • 10 pieces urad dal badi/ sundried black gram lentil nuggets small badis. If large ones, break them up
  • 1/4 cup mustard oil
  • 2 dried red chillies whole chillies

For Aloo Badi

  • 2 teaspoon mustard oil or the left over oil after frying badi above
  • 1 pinch asafoedtida powder
  • 2 bay leaves fresh, if available
  • 1/4 teaspoon Jeera Cumin seeds
  • 2/3 cup Chives about 25 gms. I used spring onions instead
  • 1 onion about 50 gms. Sliced fine
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
  • 2/3 cup tomato about 100 gms or 2 medium tomato. Diced small
  • 3 cups potato about 300 gms or 2 medium potatoes. Diced small
  • 1/4 teaspoon heiribob peel or Manipuri citrus peel or else kaffir lime peel. I used lemon peel
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste

Instructions

Preparation

  • Slice the onions fine/ small. Peel and dice the potatoes into small cubes, about 1 cm square. Keep them in a bowl of water till required, to stop discolouration. Dice the tomatoes into small cubes, about 1/2 cm square Slice the chives (or spring onions, if using) into 1" lengths Mince the heiribob citrus/lemon peel into small pieces

How to Fry the Badi

  • Heat a pan and add the mustard oil. Wait till it is hot (about 45 seconds) without letting it smoke. Add the badi, and fry on low heat till it is a light brown. About 2 minutes. Add the whole dried red chillies to the badi, fry them till they begin to turn black (turn them so that both sides are fried). About 45 seconds Strain the badi and chilli and set them aside in a dry bowl, till required.

How to Make Bori Thongba or Manipuri Aloo Badi

  • In the same pan, or after transferring the left over oil to a larger pan, start making the aloo badi. If there is very little oil in the pan, add another 2 teaspoons. Add the jeera and let it crackle. Add hing powder (asafoetida), the bay leaves and sliced chives. Keeping the heat low, saute till the chives begin to blacken. About 5 minutes as the chives may take some time to blacken.
  • Increase the heat and add onion slices. Saute till the onions darken to a golden brown. About 2 minutes. Add the ginger garlic paste, stir them in. Saute for about 30 seconds, till you get the aroma of the ginger and garlic. Add tomatoes, and still keeping the heat high, stir continuously for about 30 seconds, till the tomatoes blend with the rest of the gravy.
  • Now drain and add the potatoes, stirring so that they are coated in the masala. About 10 seconds. Add the fried badi and red chilli, along with any residual oil. Add the citrus peel, stir well. Add the garam masala and salt and again stir well.
  • Add 2-3 cups of water so that the surface of the curry is completely covered. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat, to keep the curry in a simmer for about 20 minutes. The badi/ nuggets should now be soft and spongy and the potatoes should be cooked. Remove to a serving bowl. Serve hot, with steamed rice.