Making Dried Peas Curry (Ragda) and Cooking Potatoes
Rinse the dried white peas a couple of times in fresh water. Soak them in 2.5 cups of water overnight or for 8 to 9 hours.
Drain all the water and rinse the soaked peas once or twice with fresh water in a strainer. Add the soaked white peas to the steel insert of 6 quart Instant pot.
Add the ground spices – turmeric powder, red chilli powder and salt. Also add the 1 tablespoon of oil.
Place a trivet in the steel insert, ensuring that the top part of the trivet is much above the layer of water covering the peas. Place a pan containing 2 to 3 large potatoes (or 4 medium sized potatoes) on the trivet.
Seal with the lid and the pressure valve positioned in the sealing mode. Pressure cook for 30 minutes on high pressure.
After 30 minutes the pressure cooker will beep. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes before releasing the valve.
Open the lid and check the potatoes with a fork or knife. The fork should pass easily through the potatoes.
Check if the peas are tender and softened. Pressure cook the peas for 10 more minutes if they are half cooked and not softened.
Press the sauté button and set the time to 10 or 12 minutes. Mash some of the cooked peas with a potato or vegetable masher. This helps to thicken the curry.
Simmer for 10 to 12 minutes or more until the consistency thickens. The curry should not have a thin or runny consistency. The consistency should be medium to medium-thick and flowing. Keep the warm function on in the Instant pot.
Making Potato Patties Mixture
Drain all the water from the potatoes after they are cooked. When they are still warm, peel and then mash them. Ensure that there are no fine chunks of potatoes in the mash.
Tip – to mash the potatoes easily : always mash the potatoes when they are hot or warm. They get mashed easily than mashing, when they become cool.
Let the mashed potatoes cool at room temperature.
Add breadcrumbs or cornflour and salt to the mashed potatoes. Also add red chilli powder and salt according to taste.
Mix well. Check the seasonings and add more salt if needed.
Make medium sized balls of the mashed potato mixture. Flatten them, shape into round patties and set aside.
Frying Potato Patties
Heat oil/ghee on a tava (griddle) or in a shallow frying pan. Keep the potato patties on the hot oil in the tava for frying. Fry on medium heat.
Lift with the spatula and check to see if the base is golden. Then turn over the patties and fry the second side until crisp and golden.
Fry till the patties become golden brown and crisp turning over them as needed.
Fry all the patties in batches this way.
Alternatively, you could arrange the fried patties, at the sides of the circular tava and fry the fresh batch of patties in the center.
Keep everything ready for the toppings and garnish before you assemble the ragda patties. The potato patties have to be hot or warm before you assemble, so keep everything ready before you fry the patties.
The ragda should be hot or warm.
Both the green chutney and the sweet chaat chutney should be made a day ahead or before making the patties and set aside. (You could also use ready made chaat chutneys.)
The onions and coriander have to be chopped and set aside.
The sev – I used readymade sev and the only variety I got near my place was a slight thicker variety than the fine sev used in Mumbai.
Set aside all the dry ground spice powders – chaat masala, roasted cumin powder, regular salt/black salt.
Making Ragda Patties
Pour the ragda curry in a shallow bowl or in a plate.
Place two to three potato patties on the curry.
Top with 2 to 3 tablespoons whisked or beaten curd or yogurt. Adding curd is optional.
Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of green chutney or mint coriander chutney, ½ to 1 teaspoon dry red chilli chutney (optional) and 1 to 2 tablespoons sweet tamarind chutney on the ragda. Vary the quantity of chutney while topping according to your preferences.
Top with 1 to 2 tablespoons of finely chopped onions and finely chopped tomatoes if using.
Sprinkle a few pinches of chaat masala, black salt or regular salt and roasted cumin powder. At this point, you could add a few drops of lemon juice or chopped/grated unripe raw mango for some tanginess and freshness.
Top with some sev or as much you want. Then top with some pomegranate arils.
Garnish with chopped coriander leaves or mint leaves.
Serve the ragda patties immediately as soon as you assemble it. Make all the remaining portions of ragda pattice this way.
The recipe can be scaled to make a small or big batch.
To make the ragda curry you can use dried green peas.
Prepare the chutneys in advance or 1 day ahead and refrigerate to ease your work.
Remember to soak the dried white peas for 8 to 9 hours.
For the toppings, the ground spices and the various chutneys can be added more or less according to your taste buds.
The peas curry can be made in a pressure cooker on the stove-top. I won't recommend a pan as it will take a very long time to cook these peas.