Thinly sliced potatoes are packed with flavors from Nepalese six spice blend, roasted to golden brown perfection then topped with cilantro, sev, lemon juice for an impressive yet easy side dish. Vegetarian/vegan & gluten-free recipe.
I have been following a Nepalese Chef, Santosh Shah based in UK after watching him as one of the finalist in the MasterChef Professionals 2020. The way he has been representing Nepali cuisine, native ingredients, and cooking techniques is authentic with his interpretation, which I really enjoy. Nepali cuisine has long been lumped with Indian cuisine, which is understandable as we share many common ingredients, cultural/social/religious influences, and cooking styles. But let’s not forget that Nepal is a diverse country with many ethnic groups, unique culture, traditions, and of course variety of regional and ethnic cuisines!
Hassleback Potatoes with Nepalese Six Spice recipe I am sharing today is a mix of Swedish + Nepalese origin. Hassleback potatoes is a Swedish side dish that gets its name from Hasselbacken, the Stockholm restaurant where it was first served. The idea is to thinly slice potatoes while keeping them intact and roasting them in the oven so it’s like a cross between baked potatoes and roasted potatoes.
There are many popular herb and spice blends across the globe but I was excited to see Nepalese Six Spice from Chef Santosh on his youtube channel recently. In Nepalese cuisine, these six spices (cumin, coriander, chilies, fenugreek, cloves, and timur (Nepali Sichuan pepper) is widely used and this is a versatile blend that can be used for marinating meats, chutneys, roasting vegetables, and for soups/stews.
I made a paste with Nepalese Six Spice, garlic, and olive oil for hassleback potates and it made a humble yet delicious side dish. There is something really comforting about potatoes with a hint of familiar spices like timur and cumin in every bite.
Hassleback Potatoes with Nepalese Six Spice is best served as a side dish/appetizer. I dressed mine with chopped cilantro, sev (small pieces of crunchy noodles made from chickpea flour), and generous squeeze of lemon juice. You can really go to town here with other toppings such as chickpeas, pomegranate seeds, chopped onions, chopped radish, yogurt, and various chutneys.
Hassleback Potatoes with Nepalese Six Spice
for 2 potatoes
2 large Russet potatoes, or something similar
1 heaping tablespoon Nepalese Six Spice (see below)
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoon olive oil
salt to taste
toppings: chopped cilantro, lemon slices, sev
Preheat the oven to 450F.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.
Place a potato on a cutting board between two chopsticks. Slice the potato into 1/4 inch thick slices, the chopsticks will help keep the potatoes intact.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, Nepalese Six Spice, minced garlic, and salt.
Brush the spice mixture all over the potatoes, making sure to get some in between the slices.
Bake for 50-60 minutes until potatoes are tender and browned. Remove the potatoes from the oven and let them cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Top with chopped cilantro, lemon juice, sev
Nepalese Six Spice Blend (Recipe from Chef Santosh Shah; full video here)
Take equal part cumin, coriander, fenugreek, 5-6 red dried chilies, cloves, and 1/4-1/2 the quantity of timur (Nepali Sichuan pepper).
In a small pan, first toast fenugreek seeds until slightly brown as it takes longer to toast then add the remaining spices and toast until slightly fragrant. Remove from heat and let it cool. Use a coffee/spice grinder or mortar pestle to make the spice blend. Keep the spice blend in an airtight container and use it as needed.
*I find the flavor of cloves to be a bit overpowering so I did half cloves and half black pepper for my blend*
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