Potatoes, peas and mild Indian spices make up the base of these easy-to-prepare patties. Serve with a variety of chutneys, either as an appetizer or as a nice light meal with a side salad.
Peel and cut the potatoes into about 1" -inch dice. For this recipe it is best to use starchier potatoes such as russets.
Place into a pot, cover with cold water and bring to a boil. Add the salt and bay leaf. Turn the heat down to a simmer and let cook until soft enough to mash, about 15 minutes or so. Alternatively, the potatoes can be steamed.
Meanwhile, go ahead and cook the peas.
To cook the peas, bring a pot of cold water to a boil. Once the water boils, add the salt and peas and cook for about 2 to 4 minutes or until just cooked through. Drain, rinse under cold water and set aside while you check the potatoes.
Once the potatoes are just cooked through (soft enough to mash, but not mushy), drain and add them back to the hot pot. Set aside. The hot pot will help to dry out the potatoes a bit while you prepare the rest of your mise en place.
To prepare the mirepoix, finely dice the onions, ginger and green chilies. If you like things spicy, add both chilies with or without the ribs and seeds. Set this all aside while you mash the potatoes.
Once the potatoes have dried a bit (but are still warm), mash them using a fork or potato masher. Do not use a potato ricer. This will make the potatoes too fine. By mashing with a fork, a few little chunks of potato here and there will add nice texture.
Transfer this to a large bowl and set aside while you fry the mirepoix.
To fry the mirepoix, heat a fry pan over medium high heat. Once hot, add the oil, followed by the onions, ginger and chilies. *Note: If desired, omit the oil and dry-sauté the mirepoix with a bit of vegetable stock or water.
Let cook for about a minute until the onions just start to soften. Then add all of the spices and let cook for a few seconds until aromatic.
To mix the patties, gently fold together the potatoes, peas, onion-spice mixture, chickpea flour and lemon juice. If adding the cilantro, finely chop it and add it to the mix.
To form the patties, measure approximately 1/8 cup and form into golf ball-like rounds. Then gently press them flat to form even patties.
Once all the patties are formed, cover them with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes or until completely cooled. Note: cold patties will stay together better during frying. The patties can be made several hours ahead.
To fry the patties, heat the oil in a non-stick fry pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the patties. Fry until golden brown before gently turning over. Continue to cook on the other side until golden brown and heated through. Once done, place onto a rack.
*Note: If desired, omit the oil and place the patties onto a baking tray lined with parchment and bake in a 350°F oven (175°C) for 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden and heated through. Gently flip the patties halfway through baking.
Serve the patties either warm or at room temperature with tamarind, tomato, or mint chutney (recipe links below).
If desired, sprinkle the tops of the patties with a bit of chat masala (see note below).
**Chat masala is an Indian spice blend that is often used as a finishing seasoning. It adds a nice flavor and just a bit of saltiness.
Serve these potato patties with the following chutney recipes: