Make Spicy Chips Masala + 9 Year Blogging Anniversary

Spicy and vibrant Chips Masala made out of chips/ fries and a spicy tomato masala base that is sure to tantalize your taste buds.

WordPress notified me this week that I signed up for a blog 9 years ago! 9 years is a long time and I cannot believe I am here still writing in this space. Clearly there has been a lot of memories, stories, experiences, trials but most of all growth. Tremendous growth. In fact you are going to be seeing that in the follow up posts where I want to shift my focus to incorporate more storytelling and research. I always feel like I am just scratching the surface when it comes to Ugandan food and culture. This storytelling and research will include a mix of written, photo and video essays. So watch out for those by subscribe to my YouTube Channel. I am also going to be sharing a few lessons I have learned for the past 9 years regarding food photography in a follow up post. So watch out for that as well. I am so excited for what these next months have in store. For now let us get into this tantalizing dish of chips masala.

It has been gloomy and rainy here a lot and I have found myself craving the comfort of potatoes but with the spicy kick of masala, hence chips masala. And because I could go on and on about how this dish makes me feel, I do not want to waste any more of your time so here is the recipe and an accompanying video.

Chips Masala Recipe

What you will need:

4 Large potatoes,

2 Medium tomatoes, chopped

2 Small onions, thinly sliced

4 Garlic cloves, minced

2 Green chilies, chopped,

1 Tsp. Tomato paste

Juice of  half a lemon/ lime

1/2 Tsp. Cumin seeds

1 Tbsp. Curry mix (cumin, coriander, turmeric, cloves, paprika)

1/2 Tsp. Smoked paprika

1/2 Tsp. Black pepper

Salt

A pinch of sugar

Oil for frying

Observations

When you combine, tomatoes, tomato paste and lemon juice, they tend to be sour. Use the pinch (or more) of sugar to cut through the sourness.

I opted to not peel my potatoes and thoroughly washed them instead.

You can see a variation of this recipe using sweet potatoes here.

If you want your chips masala to be more soupy, add water or stock accordingly

You don’t have to use all 4 garlic cloves especielly if you are not a fan of garlic

Method

Wash and slice your potatoes into thin chips. Place the chips in water and let them soak for about 20 minutes.

Chop, slice and mince your tomatoes, onions and garlic respectively.

After 30 minutes, drain the water from the chips well.

Place a pan with oil enough to fry the chips on high heat and let it heat up.

Fry the chips till golden brown. Remove from fire and set aside.

Place a separate pan on fire and let it heat up. Add the cumin seeds into the pan and let them toast for about 10 seconds. Add about 2 tablespoons of oil into the pan.

Add garlic and onions to the pan and let them cook till soft.

Next add the tomatoes and let them cook till soft. Keep stirring to avoid burning

Add the tomato paste into the tomamto mixture and mix well.

Next add your chilies, spices, salt and sugar and mix well.

Add the lemon juice and mix well.
Laslty add the fried chips into the tomato mixture and mix (for about 5 minutes) well till they are all well coated.

Remove from fire and serve hot

Let me know in the comments below if you have tried chips masala. Use #AkitchenInUg to share your creations.

Loaded Bean and Dodo (Amaranth) Salad

Starting this blog, I was young and naive. All I knew is that I wanted to cook exciting, interesting and delicious food. Years later,  I now understand the value of food, using local produce,  using fresh produce and being creative.  This salad was conceived after binge watching the amazing Fat Salt Acid Heat docu-series. I was blown away by the beauty of how the most basic of ingredients yield some of the best flavors.  When you think of beans and dodo and potatoes individually, a salad rarely comes to your mind.  But when the same ingredients are transformed through different techniques, what you get is a beautiful vibrant salad that is so satisfying and complex in flavors.  This is one of the main reasons I keep slaving away in the kitchen like a mad woman because the ecstasy of discovering something else a common produce can be is unmatched! I had a hard time naming this salad because it has dodo,  masala potatoes, sweet and charred carrots,  beans, green onions for a spicy kick, pumpkin seeds for a crunch and a sprinkle of cheese to marry all the flavors together. This would have made a really long title. Ha!
What you will need: 
1 C. Beans, boiled and drained
1C. Potatoes, cut into wedges
1 C. Carrots, julienned
A handful of dodo(amaranth greens), steamed
1/4 C. Green onions, chopped
1/4 C. Nuts
1/4 C. Cheese, grated (optional)
Juice from half an orange
1 Tsp. Soy sauce
1 Tsp. Ground cumin
1 Tsp. curry powder
1/2 Tsp. chili flakes
Black pepper
Salt
Observations: 
  1. Using cheese is optional.
  2. Use salt carefully keeping in mind that all the individual salted components will be combined. With that said, I salted only the potatoes. Then sprinkled salt on the finished salad.
  3. You can use any type of beans. I used red beans.
  4. You can use any nuts available to you.
  5. I recommend a non-stick pan to avoid burning
Method:
  1. Place a pan on fire, Wait for it to get hot. Add about a teaspoon of oil.
  2. Add the potato wedges. Shallow fry the wedges till half way cooked. Make sure you keep stirring to avoid burning.
  3. After they reach the half-way cooked point, add the salt, cumin, curry powder and black pepper and mix well. Let them cook till tender.
  4. Remove the potatoes from fire and set aside.
  5. Using the same pan, add a half teaspoon of oil.
  6. Add the carrots to the oil. Add the juice of half an orange.
  7. Let the carrots  shallow fry till the orange juice has reduced to a thick sauce and the carrots start to slightly char.
  8. Remove the carrots from the pan and set aside.
  9. Using the same pan still, add half a teaspoon of oil and saute the green onions.
  10. Add the soy sauce, and chili flakes to the frying onions.
  11. Fry the onions till they turn a bright green but still have a crunch.
  12. Remove the onions from fire
To assemble the salad
Layer the salad by starting with the boiled beans. Next add the potatoes. Next add the steamed dodo. Add the caramelized carrots on top. Next add the onions. Sprinkle your nuts/seeds on top. Finish off with grated cheese.
Serve with a glass of wine or iced tea.
Share you creations using #AkitchenInUg