Want to indulge on something different for dinner? Then try this delicious and mouthwatering Beetroot Kofta Curry! The curry has small vegetable balls known as Koftas that are usually fried before adding it to the spicy gravy. While I enjoy fried food just as much as everyone else, I’m not a fan of deep frying at home. In this recipe, I have shown you a method to make your Kofta’s healthy without deep frying them. Enriched with the goodness of vegetables, these vegetable beetroot dumplings cooked in a spicy onion-tomato based gravy is bursting with myriad flavours.
A word of caution before you make them- these are very addictive! You can easily snack on them as you make the koftas. Just like pakodas and vadas, these Koftas are superb to have on a rainy evening along with a cup of ginger tea. I wouldn’t even dare to make the deep fry version just for the two of us. I only make such dishes when my children are home or exclusively for guests . So, at least there are more people to finish these off and I don’t keep drooling over them.
The real star of this dish is the gravy. So, what all can go into the gravy purely depends on what type of gravy base you plan to make. Today, I’m making a tomato-onion based gravy with a few spices. You can slightly alter the spices to suit your taste. I always believe there is nothing right or wrong when it comes to cooking, how you combine and balance out the flavours is the trick. Today, these are the ingredients put into the dish depending on my mood and availability. The next time I make this dish may be totally different.
Beetroot Kofta Curry or for that matter any dish, add a pinch of this, and then add a pinch of that with my fingers is the motto I follow. So, when it comes to writing a recipe, I have to actually measure each ingredient, time taken for each step. Yes!!! That is a tough process indeed!
I have often heard people say beets are boring. Look at my Beetroot Kofta Curry, does it look boring?Don’t you think the lovely pinkish-red hue of the koftas and the spicy curry is just perfect to tantalize your taste buds. It’s an instant crowd pleaser at every party and making this for dinner can turn a seemingly ordinary evening into something special. The depth and texture of was nothing less compared to any non-veg kofta and needless to say the end result was finger licking good.
To make Beetroot Kofta Curry vegan, simply skip the butter and cream. The rest of the recipe remains same.
Here it is!! Beetroot Kofta Curry, from my kitchen to yours!!
Easy Steps to follow for Beetroot Kofta Curry:
The different stages in the preparation of Beetroot Kofta Curry are explained below:
- Heat oil in a pan over medium heat and sauté ginger-garlic-green chilli paste (or minced).
- Add grated beetroot, carrots & required salt. Fry for 2-3 minutes and turn off the heat.
You don’t need to restrict yourself to these veggies, feel free to add finely chopped veggies of your choice.
- Boil potatoes, peel and mash or grate them in a bowl.
- Add finely chopped coriander. (Optionally you can also add finely chopped mint leaves)
- Cool the beetroot mixture and add to the mashed potatoes along with breadcrumbs, required salt and mix.
- Divide into equal portions & make small balls.
- You can either deep fry or shallow fry these balls. I will be showing both the processes.
Deep frying Koftas:
- Heat oil in a deep pan or kadai and deep fry the balls (koftas) till golden and crisp.
- Drain and remove on to an absorbent paper. Set aside.
Shallow frying Koftas in Appe Pan:
- Heat the Appe pan over medium high heat and add a few drops of oil in each of the wells.
- Toss in koftas, one in each of the wells. Be careful, it will sizzle and may splatter.
- Cover it with a lid and cook for a minute and when the underside begins to brown turn the kofta to the other side.
- Flip the balls over and allow to cook on all sides evenly. Sprinkle in some more oil drops at intervals, only if needed or if the koftas are sticking to the sides of the pan, which usually is not the case. They cook pretty fast and takes around 2-3 mins on each side.
- Shallow fry koftas till golden brown and transfer to an absorbent paper.
Making Pastes for gravy:
You will need onion paste, tomato puree and masala paste for the gravy.
- Allow the koftas to cool and set them aside while you prepare the gravy.
- Blanch onions and tomatoes to make the puree.
- For this, remove skin of onions and cut into quarters. Make two slits in tomatoes and immerse in water and blanch them along with onions for 8 to 10 minutes.
- Drain onions and tomatoes from water and peel the skin of the tomatoes.
- Grind onions and tomatoes separately into paste.
For the Masala paste:
- In a mixer, add all the ingredients under the section “For masala paste”. Grind to a smooth paste adding a little water.
- The almonds and cashews give the gravy a good consistency and taste. You can add a few more nuts if you want more gravy or to make it less spicy.
- Heat oil in a non stick pan over medium heat.
- Add dry masalas and sauté for a minute till you get a nice aroma.
- Now, add the onion paste and sauté for two minutes till the raw smell goes off.
- Add the tomato puree and mix well. Continue cooking for 3 minutes.
- Now, add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, sugar and mix.
- Add in the masala paste and cook till the raw smell goes away.
- Add required water depending on the desired consistency of the gravy and cook for 5 minutes.
- The gravy should be slightly runny because later on when you add the kofta balls before serving, they will absorb the liquid and the gravy will become thick.
- Finally, crush and add kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves), sprinkle some garam masala, and adjust salt. Mix well.
- Add the coriander and fresh cream.
- Allow the mixture to come to a boil and turn off the heat.
Eating and Serving Beetroot Kofta Curry:
- To serve the beetroot kofta curry, ladle the curry into your serving bowl and then place the beetroot kofta on top. Garnish with cilantro and serve hot.
- Normally the dish is enjoyed with rice or any Indian bread like roti, puri, paratha or naan.
A Quick Summary:
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 2 teaspoons ginger-garlic-green chilli paste
- 2 Beetroots grated
- 1 Carrot grated
- 2 Potatoes boiled & mashed
- ½ cup coriander chopped
- ½ Cup Breadcrumbs
- Required salt
- Required Oil to shallow fry or deep fry
- 1 Tablespoon Oil or butter
- 1 Cardamom
- 3 Cloves
- 1 cm Cinnamon
- 2 Onions blanched & pureed
- 2 Green chillies finely chopped
- 3 Tomatoes blanched & pureed
- 1/2 teaspoon Turmeric powder
- 1½ teaspoons Red Chilli powder
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Salt to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon Garam masala powder
- 2 Tablespoons Fresh cream
- 2 teaspoons Kasuri methi
- Chopped coriander leaves
For Masala Paste:
- 1 inch Ginger
- 4 Garlic pods
- 1 Cm Cinnamon
- 3 Cloves
- 1 Green Cardamom
- 6-8 Almonds
- 6-8 Cashews
- In a pan, sauté ginger-garlic-green chilli paste in oil over medium heat.
- Add beetroot & carrot grate. Fry for 2 minutes and turn off the heat.
- Add this to the mashed potatoes along with coriander, salt, breadcrumbs and mix.
- Make balls & deep fry or shallow fry.
- Heat oil in a non stick pan over medium heat. Add dry spices & fry for a minute.
- Add onion paste and green chillies.
- Sauté for two minutes, add the tomato puree and cook for five minutes.
- Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, sugar, salt, water and boil for 5 minutes.
- Add garam masala powder, coriander and fresh cream and turn off the heat.
- Serve hot with the kofta pieces.
- Increase or decrease the spiciness of kofta or the gravy and adjust spice levels to suit your taste.
- Shallow fry koftas over medium heat to get a crispy outer crust.
- Important point to be taken into consideration is – since beetroot releases water, it is essential to add the right amount of binding agent (like corn flour, chick pea flour, bread etc.), so that these balls don’t break while frying.
- In case the mixture becomes too soft and loose, you can add some more breadcrumbs or corn flour or gram flour and mix. This will remove excess moisture.
- Feel free to add finely chopped veggies of your choice in the kofta mixture. But, sauté them before carrot and beetroot grate.
- To make the curry creamier, add more butter and heavy cream to it. You may also add some more nuts to the masala paste to make the gravy creamier.
- Add the koftas only before serving otherwise they becomes soggy.
- If your hands become stained during preparation and cooking beetroot, rub some lemon juice over them to help remove the colour or just use hand gloves.
- To make the curry vegan, simply skip the butter and cream. The rest of the recipe remains same.
Check out different options for kofta mixture preparation. You can also use the fillings/mixtures used in these recipes:
Many more to come!!…..STAY TUNED!!
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Happy Cooking 🙂