Aloo posto is a simple Bengali side dish made with potatoes cooked in a poppy seeds paste. The seasoning is also light with just salt and green chilies. Traditionally, aloo posto is served with luchi, or poori or dal and rice.
3tbspwhite poppy seeds, khuskhus or posto dana, soaked in ½ cup water
To make the posto or poppy seeds paste
Sieve the soaked poppy seeds into the smallest blender jar. I use the spice grinding jar of my mixer.
Add 1 chopped green chilli and some water to help the grinding.
Grind to a fine paste
To make the aloo posto
Heat mustard oil in a flat pan or wok. Bring it to a smoke at medium heat and then reduce the heat to low.
Add panch phoran spices to the hot oil.
When the seeds start to sputter, add the chopped potatoes. Mix well till all the potatoes are coated with oil and spices.
Cover and cook on low heat for 5 minutes.
Add the posto paste, turmeric, and slit green chillies. Add ½ cup water and mix everything well. Cover and cook for another 8-10 mins on low heat. Occasionally stir in between to check if the water is sufficient and the potatoes are not sticking to the bottom of the pan. Cook until the potatoes are cooked through.
Aloo posto gravy is very thick with the potatoes coated with the posto paste. If you want a thinner consistency add more water in the previous step.
Mustard oil and panch phoran spices are not essential to the recipe. If you don’t have or aren’t comfortable with the strong taste of mustard oil, use regular cooking oil. Similarly if you don’t have panch phoran spices, you can use just mustard seeds and/or nigella seeds.
Aloo posto is a great recipe for Navratri and other fasting days as it has no onions and garlic. When making for fasting meals, you may skip the turmeric powder.