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Bombay aloo (aka Bombay potatoes) are tender, spicy and hugely flavoursome. Amazing as a side dish to go with your favourite curry, or as a vegan or vegetarian main, these potatoes are super versatile and come together in less than 30 minutes. Recreate this Indian restaurant classic in your own home today!
What are they?
Bombay aloo or Bombay potatoes (aloo is simply the Hindi name for potatoes) are potatoes that are pre-boiled and then tossed in a rich tomato sauce which is flavoured with earthy spices along with ginger, garlic and onion. They aren’t particularly spicy, but of course, you can dial up the heat when you make these by adding more curry powder or some diced chillis if you want some extra zing.
Despite the name, the specific origins of Bombay (now Mumbai) potatoes are unknown as this dish is found throughout India. Its popularity has also grown across the world over the years, and you will find them as a staple on many Indian restaurant menus.
What can I serve them with?
Bombay aloo are great to serve as a side dish with curry. Try whipping up this slow cooker chicken curry, this lamb bhuna or this chicken rogan josh to go alongside.
Since it’s so satisfying and flavoursome you could also serve this up as a main dish with rice or naan. You can also throw in a handful of spinach alongside the tomatoes to wilt down for extra texture and visual appeal.
These don’t only go with curries, however. Serve them in place of your usual potatoes with a roast for a tasty alternative at Sunday dinner, or use them as an accompaniment with this spinach stuffed chicken or this hunters chicken.
What type of potatoes should I use?
The ideal potatoes to use are a waxy variety. Potatoes are classed as either waxy or starchy, waxy being firmer and the type that holds their shape when cooked. Starchy potatoes are the type that become crumbly when cooked. Therefore, to make sure that the dish holds up and you don’t end up with a bowl of broken and bashed potatoes, don’t choose a starchy variety.
Baby or new potatoes are waxy, and if you use small potatoes then you can also use them whole in the recipe, saving on prep time. Popular waxy varieties in the UK are Charlotte, Anya or Jersey Royals. In the US look for Red Bliss or Fingerlings, and in Australia opt for Kipfler or a similar type.
Do I need to peel the potatoes?
You don’t need to peel the potatoes for this recipe. Not only is that less prep, but the skins contain more fibre and protein than the rest of the potato so it’s a win-win!
If you do, however, want to peel the potatoes then go ahead, the recipe will still work and as long as you use waxy potatoes they will hold together fine.
Can I make it with leftover potatoes?
Got some leftover roasties from Sunday dinner? The great news is that you can make this recipe with pre-cooked chunks of potato. Leftover roast or boiled potatoes work great, and you could even whip this up with potato wedges for a flavoursome snack or side dish. If the leftovers are of a starchy variety, however, just be careful not to bash them around too much as they will break up in the dish.
Can I make it in advance?
Cooked Bombay aloo can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 days. For best results reheat in the oven until piping hot. Add a splash of water if they are looking too dry.
You can also freeze the potatoes for up to 3 months. Defrost thoroughly before reheating. The potatoes may soften a little during the freezing and thawing process, however.
For a full list of ingredients with weights and measurements jump to the printable recipe card.
- Waxy potatoes, sliced into 2in/5cm pieces
- Black mustard seeds
- Cumin seeds
- Onion, sliced
- Garlic cloves, crushed
- Ginger paste
- Tomatoes, diced
- Coriander, roughly chopped
- Coriander powder
- Curry powder
How to make it
For more detailed recipe steps with tips jump to the printable recipe card.
- Boil the potatoes for around 10 minutes, until just tender.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the mustard and cumin seeds. Cook until the mustard seeds start to pop.
- Add the onion to the pan and cook for 4-5 minutes until softened.
- Add the potatoes to the pan and cook for a few minutes until they have turned golden on the edges.
- Reduce the heat and add the spices to bloom them.
- Add the tomatoes to the pan and let everything simmer together for around 5 minutes, stirring regularly.
Looking for more great Indian side dish recipes? Try:
Products that work well for this recipe:
Magnetic Spice Rack – Set of 12
2 in 1 Garlic Press
Cole & Mason Herb Keeper
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 4 1x
- Diet: Vegan
Bombay aloo (aka Bombay potatoes) are tender, spicy and hugely flavoursome. These potatoes are super versatile and come together in less than 30 minutes.
The default recipe serves 4
- 500g waxy potatoes, halved or quartered if large (see note 1)
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds (see note 2)
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 2 tomatoes (150g / 5oz), diced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 4 tbsp roughly chopped coriander
For the spice mix: (see note 3)
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp curry powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- Place the potatoes in a large pan of salted water and bring to a boil. Cook until just tender, around 10 minutes from when the water starts to boil. Drain and leave to steam in a colander or large sieve.
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring regularly, until the mustard seeds start to pop,
- Add the onion and cook for around 4-5 minutes, until starting to soften. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for a further minute, stirring constantly.
- Add the potatoes and cook for around 3 minutes, until they start to turn golden on the sides.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the spice mix to the pan. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Don’t allow the spices to burn and reduce the heat more if needed. Season well.
- Tip the tomatoes into the pan and toss or stir everything together. Continue to cook for around 5 minutes, until the tomatoes have broken down and there is a thick sauce clinging to the potatoes.
- Make sure to use waxy potatoes. Baby or new potatoes are a good choice. The potatoes do not need to be peeled.
- You can use yellow mustard seeds as an alternative, or replace with additional cumin seeds if you don’t have any.
- There are no hard and fast rules about what spices you should use. Feel free to swap things or add more. Garam masala, chilli powder (watch the heat) or cumin powder are all great additions.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Category: Side
- Method: Hob / Stove
- Cuisine: Indian
- Calories: 195
- Fat: 8g
- Carbohydrates: 45g
- Protein: 5g
Keywords: Indian, side, curry, vegetarian, vegan, potatoes, tomatoes