Left Overs for Lunch: MASALA ALOO AUR DAL KA PARANTHA (SMASHED MASALA POTATOES WITH LENTIL FLATBREAD)

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Mumbai, i.e. the erstwhile Bombay, is a place where the weather is either warm or hot and most of the time humid. The heat and humidity is capable of taking a toll on one’s energy levels. The only season that is pleasant here is the monsoon and the only time when the heat levels subside a little bit is during December and January.

When monsoon was lashing the city relentlessly, for what seemed like eternity (three and a half months actually), I was sick of the dank smells of the season; I was craving for the bright sunny days. Now, when the monsoon has receded and the sun is beating down on the city, I am missing the cool monsoon days


Mumbai is simmering…the humidity is suffocatingly high and is such a deterrent that I look for escape routes to avoid cooking standing by the stove in the kitchen. Yesterday happened to be one such day when I did not feel like entering the kitchen. I was running out of veggies and the hot sun outside terminated any thoughts, whatsoever, that I had to step out to buy my stock of vegetables. So, the hunt for leftovers in the refrigerator begun Voila! Some leftover dal that was cooked the previous evening. But I knew that my daughter would flatly refuse to eat it for lunch. She always wants variety in her food and no left-overs please; unless it happens to be chicken J

Half an hour was left for my daughter to be back home from school and I quickly rummaged through the other stuff in fridge. One of the things which is omnipresent in my refrigerator is boiled potatoes. They are really handy when I run out of veggies or when I am going through one of those ‘I want a break from kitchen’ moments; which are more weather induced than any other factor. They provide me a variety of options; stuffed potato flatbread, a bread roll, potato cutlet, potato curry and of course smashed masala potatoes, etc.

So, the potatoes were peeled and given a coarse mash, onion was chopped, lentil was mixed with whole wheat flour and dough made ready. Now what was left was giving a quick stir fry to the smashed potatoes and making flatbread from the lentil dough. Twenty minutes was all it took!! I was pleased with the meal that I was going to dish out to my daughter – yum and wholesome. She happily mopped up the whole stuff along with raita. And I was a happy satisfied mother J



For the smashed potatoes you need:

5 medium sized potatoes
½ tsp panch phoran/ 5-spice mix (I had left over from the 5-Spiced Tomato Chutney)
2 dry red chillies
1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
½ medium sized tomato, grated or finely chopped
1 sprig curry leaves
Salt to taste
¼ tsp red chili powder (adjust)
¼ tsp turmeric powder
¼ tsp garam masala powder
2 tbsp oil- I used olive oil (or more if the potatoes look dry)
1 tbsp fresh coriander, finely chopped (optional)
Coarsely smash the potatoes (ensure that you do not have big chunks).
In a pan or wok, heat the oil and add the dry red chillies. Immediately add the panch phoran and once they begin to crackle, carefully add the curry leaves (they will splutter) along with the onions.
Sauté onions till they become translucent
Reduce the head and add salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder and garam masala.
Stir them for 15 seconds and then add the tomatoes.
If using grated tomato, stir only for 15-20 seconds and if using the chopped ones, cook them till them become mushy and the masala leaves oil.
Add the potatoes and give them a quick stir till the masala coats them well.
Remove from heat and serve!
For the Lentil fried flatbread you need:

1 cup of cooked dal (lentil)
1½ cup of whole wheat flour, for a soft dough (½ cup more if you want a firm dough)
¼ tsp of garam masala powder
1 small onion, finely chopped
¼ tsp salt
Mix in the salt, garam masala powder to the wheat flour.
Add the cooked dal and onion to the flour mix.
Without using water, make a dough.
Divide the dough in equal sized (peach sized) balls


Using dry flour (to avoid the balls from sticking to the rolling pin) roll the balls in small disk shape and apply little melted butter or ghee (clarified butter) to it.
Fold the rolled disk as shown in the picture to form a square and then roll it into a parantha (flatbread).
Transfer the parantha on a greased skillet. Turn it over once the top starts to change the colour
Cook the other side and then turn again. On this side rub a little oil over the parantha.
Turn it over and fry it.
Once the colour changes to golden brown, remove from the heat
Apply a little ghee or butter and serve! 
Makes 6-7 paranthas

Serves 2-3


Note: You can even give this to your kids for their lunch pack to school. 
Note: Dal Parantha tastes good even when served at room temperature with pickle so it can be carried for journey/ picnic.


Thanks for visiting and see you around again!

IT IS ALWAYS ENCOURAGING TO HEAR FROM FRIENDS AND READERS. I CAN ALSO BE REACHED AT: easyfoodsmith@gmail.com
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29 Comments

  1. This all looks and sounds so good. I especially would like to try and make the flatbread.

    If the weather is so unbearable there why not consider moving or is that not an
    option? I can’t handle extreme heat and humidity. It makes me sick to my stomach. Kudos to you for continuing to cook in such extreme heat.

  2. You are amazingly creative, guess your kid keeps you on your toes! The potatoes sound like they have some super flavor with all those wonderful spices in there. Also the flat bread-toasty and butter, just the way I like it. Great post!

  3. Thanks Vicki! Moving is not an option as of now coz most major cities in India have such weather (either too hot or too cold) and they are also the cities where most lucrative jobs are available so as of now, there is no other option.

  4. I so often find myself wishing for another season until it actually arrives, and then I wish for the other. The smashed potatoes look delicious and I can almost taste the lentil flatbread…

  5. Okay.. you really made me drool a little. That looks soooo fantastic!! I love deviled potatoes and your paratha looks amazing. I would eat that meal in a heart beat. Lunch.. Dinner.. Breakfast.. midnight snack. Anytime. I love it.

  6. Yum!! They both look absolutely delicious!! I love this type of Indian potato dish. I’d love to try the lentil fried flatbread. I’ve never thought of using lentils to make bread, but this sounds very interesting! Beautiful photos, too. 🙂

  7. @Jill, Any time Jill!! 😀
    I visited your beautiful city during the end of October this year and though it rained a bit in the evening one day, the weather was very pleasant during rest of the time.

  8. It’s amazing what you’ve done with leftovers! Looks like you spent hours preparing this meal. I love flatbread and this recipe looks like a keeper. Love the potatoes as well. Great lunch!

  9. My good friend is from Mumbai and heard great things about food and everything. I’d love to have this for lunch…it doesn’t look like “leftovers”. 🙂 I’ve had homemade chapati and oh that was so good. Your meals look delicious!

  10. This does not at all look like a meal from leftovers! How beautiful it looks. I love potatoes in any form! But these look so scrumptious! (And why don’t kids like leftovers? Mine don’t either. But I often think food tastes better when it’s allowed to sit!)

  11. ooh, this sounds amazing! since my brother has been living in india for almost a year now (in delhi), i’ve been experimenting a bit more with different types of indian regional cooking. this looks just fabulous – will have to give it a try!

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