“I first had a pahaaripalda in Dharmkote near McLeodganj. It is a delicious dahi-based gravy, thick and smooth, spiked with the aroma of ‘elaichi’ and ‘dalchini’. Palda is like ‘kadhi’ in texture, only more delicious! Verka Dahi lends it just the perfect creaminess and taste, and Verka Ghee adds the desirable aroma!”
- 400 gm Verka Dahi
- 1 stick ‘dalchini’
- 1⁄2 tsp cloves
- 3⁄4 tspjeera
- 2-3 green ‘elaichi’
- 2 big ‘elaichi’
- pinch of ‘heeng’
- 3⁄4 tsp ‘haldi’
- 1 1⁄2 tbsp ‘dhaniya’ powder
- Salt to taste
- 1⁄2 tsp each, garammasala and chili powder
- Dry rice grains 2 1⁄2 tbsp
- Verka Ghee 2 tbsp
- 1⁄2 cup sliced onion
- 4-5 medium sized potatoes, boiled and peeled
- Put the rice and green ‘elaichi’ seeds into a grinder and make into a fine powder. (you can add a little water to help the process)
- Whisk the Verka Dahi along with the ‘haldi’ and a little salt.
- Heat the Verka Ghee in a pan or kadhai, then add the dalchini, elaichi, jeera, cloves and heeng.
- When the spices turn a deeper colour and are fragrant, add the onion slices and sautee.
- Slice the potatoes into thick fingers and add to the pan. Stir to coat well, then sprinkle with dhaniya powder, chili powder, salt and garam masala.
- Mix together the Verka Dahi and the rice powder. Stir all this into the potatoes.
- Allow the palda to simmer for 10-12 minutes.
- Serve with a garnish of fresh dhaniya leaves. This is great with paranthas, rotis or even steamed rice!
Note: This recipe works well with slightly acidic dahi. Verka provides a really mild, sweetish dahi, so it’s advisable to use dahi which is 2-3 days old. It will be more tart. For traditional pahari flavour, make the ‘tadka’ with mustard oil. Add a ladle of Verka Ghee later, as a garnish!