Aloo pies are long, deep-fried dough that are stuffed with potatoes seasoned with fresh herbs and cumin (geera) powder. They are favorites in T&T and are often served with channa (chickpeas) or a sauce like tamarind or mango.
Trini aloo pies are derived from India’s aloo kachori or aloo ki kachori. And, aloo is the Hindi term for potato, so this is essentially a fried potato pie recipe.
Aloo pie ingredients
To make the aloo pie filling, you will need:
- potatoes: Irish potatoes are most commonly used to make aloo pies, but any type of white potato can be substituted.
- onion: white onions are usually used here.
- geera or cumin powder: this gives the potatoes that smokey flavor ever present in East Indian cuisine and that flavor dominates the aloo pie.
- green seasoning: for a Trini spin, fresh herbs like chadon beni (culantro), chives, and cilantro are added for more flavor.
- butter: adds a creamy element to the seasoned potatoes.
To make the dough for the aloo pie, you will need:
- flour: all purpose flour works well in this recipe.
- sugar: You can use either white sugar or brown sugar. Both are great for activating the yeast.
How to make aloo pie
Step 1: Wash the potatoes thoroughly and cut them in half.
Step 2: Place in a pot of boiling water and leave to cook until the potatoes are soft. This can take about 40 minutes. To reduce the time, you can cook the potatoes in the microwave.
Step 3: Drain the potatoes once they are fully cooked and set aside to cool.
Knead the dough
Step 4: Mix the dry ingredients together – flour, yeast, sugar and salt.
Step 5: Cut the butter into the mixture.
Step 6: Add water a little at a time to knead into a dough (I used just under a cup and a half of water here).
Step 7: Cover the dough and allow to proof for 30 minutes.
Season the potatoes
Step 8: Grind the onion, garlic, green seasoning or fresh herbs together in the blender or food processor. Or grate the ingredients using the fine side of a grater. I didn’t add pepper to the potatoes, but if you want a little spice, add it in here. You can grind fresh peppers with the herbs or use pepper sauce.
Step 9: Peel the boiled potatoes and mash them.
Step 10: Add the ground onion, garlic, seasoning, geera (cumin) powder, salt and butter. Mix thoroughly. Taste test the seasoned potatoes and adjust to your liking.
Stuff the dough
Step 11: Divide the dough into 2-inch balls.
Step 12: Flatten one dough ball and add flour to one side. The flour will make sure the filling spreads out and doesn’t stick onto or tear the dough.
Step 13: Add a spoonful of the seasoned potatoes (honestly, I could have added more here). Pinch the edges of the flattened dough together to seal the stuffing inside the dough.
You don’t want to roll the edges together as this will create lines in the aloo pie when frying (which I learned the hard way). But, trust me, lines in the pie does not affect its tastiness!
Step 14: Stuff all the dough balls then allow to rest for 15 minutes. Be sure to place the stuffed dough on a floured surface – they can stick and tear if you leave them too long.
Fry the aloo pies
Step 15: Place a large pot on medium heat. Add at least three to four inches of oil for deep frying. Allow the oil to heat up for at least ten minutes – you want it nice and hot.
Step 16: Rub your hands with oil. Take one of the stuffed dough balls and flatten it between your hands from your fingers to your palm. Gently push the filling around to ensure even distribution in the pie. Some use flour and roll the pies out with a rolling pin. But, excess flour on the pies will end up in the hot oil and eventually burn. If you want to use the oil on another day, skip the flour and use oil instead to flatten the pies.
Step 17: Place the aloo pie in the hot oil and leave to brown on both sides (approx. 3 to 5 minutes per side). If the pie browns too quickly, lower the heat.
Step 18: The pie will puff up nicely and rise to the surface. After it is brown and fully cooked, remove from the heat and place in a sealable container with grease paper or napkins. Cover the container to trap the heat and steam. This will ensure your pies are soft and fluffy. If you do not cover them, the aloo pies will remain crispy.
Serve the pies when hot with channa (chickpeas) or your favorite sauces like tamarind, mango and more.
Can you batch make this recipe
This recipe makes 12 aloo pies. Double or triple the recipe and freeze what’s left after your family has gorged themselves.
Aloo pie calories
With this recipe, one aloo pie before frying has about 200 calories. Deep frying can add up at least 75% more calories to food. So the calories of a fried aloo pie can be upward of 350 calories without any condiments.
More Indian delicacies
Simple aloo pie recipe
Tasty Aloo Pie Recipe
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1½ tsp yeast
- water (close to 1½ cups)
- oil (for frying)
- 1½ lb potato
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- fresh herbs (chives, chadon beni, cilantro)
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 2 tbsp butter
- pepper (optional)
- Wash potatoes and cut in half.
- Add potatoes to a pot of boiling water.
- Once the potatoes are completely soft, drain and set aside to cool.
- Mix flour, yeast, sugar and salt together.
- Cut butter into the mixture.
- Add water a little at a time and knead to form a smooth dough.
- Cover and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
- Grind the onion, garlic, fresh herbs and pepper.
- Peel potatoes and mash.
- Mix in ground onion and seasonings, cumin powder, salt and butter.
- Taste test and adjust.
Filling the dough
- Divide proofed dough into 2-inch balls.
- Flatten one ball
- Add flour to one side and a spoonful of seasoned potatoes.
- Pinch the edges of the dough together.
- Set aside and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
- Repeat for the remaining dough balls.
- Place a large pot on medium heat.
- Add about 3- to 4-inches of oil for deep frying.
- Allow the oil to heat up (at least ten minutes).
- Oil your hands.
- Flatten the filled dough between your hands until they become almost the length of your hands.
- Push gently to evenly distribute the filling in the pie.
- Place the aloo pie in the hot oil.
- As it floats and puffs up, turn and allow to brown evenly on both sides (it should take 3 to 5 minutes per side).
- Remove from the heat and place on grease paper or napkins.
- Add to a sealed container to trap the heat and steam. This will soften the pies.
- Serve hot.