Auria: A Lunch-Special Potato Curry From Traditional Dogri Cuisine
Image Credit: Unsplash, Creamy and delicious potato curry from Jammu.

On lazy afternoons, it is natural that you wouldn’t feel like cooking. You will either order in and if that isn’t an option, we bet that you’ll be on Google in no time, looking for easy and quick lunch recipes with minimum ingredients. The time is one constraint you look at and the other is the ease of access to ingredients. If you were to ask us, we’d tell you that potatoes are the easiest to work with. Not only do they get ready in a jiffy, they are also a very versatile vegetable. Potatoes are that canvas that an artist can paint in whatever way, he or she likes, according to their mood. 

Did you know that the humble potato wasn’t known to us Indians until the early 17th century? Potatoes were a gift of the Portuguese to us. They began its production along the Western coast and in no time, Britishers picked it up to bring it to Bengal. Gradually, all of north India saw a rise in the growth of potatoes. Today, from dry subzis to curries, potatoes can be dunked in all. One such curry that is made with potatoes is auria. Hailing from the Dogri cuisine, this creamy potato curry is commonly eaten for lunch. 

Dogri cuisine is the staple cuisine of the Jammu area of Jammu and Kashmir. Being practiced and eaten by the Dogri community for decades, this homely cuisine is a favourite in the region. Belonging to the Aryan race, Dogri community is not much talked about because of their low population. A closely-knit group of people with a simple and rustic fare, this cuisine is very different from the meaty and fiery flavours of their Kashmiri counterparts. 

While chutneys and breads are a common feature of meals in a Dogri household, it is this delicious potato curry that you would often find on the lunch table too. Made with a yohurt-base, the curry is creamy, smooth and fresh in taste. The tanginess of the curry comes from the use of fermented rye. It gives the dish a pale yellow colour that makes it almost like an Indianised version of mustard sauce. 

To prepare auria at home, begin by whisking the curd until it becomes really smooth. Add some mustard powder to it and whisk all of it again to mix it all well. For preparing the dish, ensure that you have this curd mixture prepared a day in advance because it would need some resting time too. Then, when you have to make auria, start with dicing potatoes into small cubes. Next, toss fenugreek seeds in hot mustard oil and let it turn black. Now comes the stage where you throw in your diced potatoes along with salt, chilli powder and turmeric. Mix it all together. Finally, pour in your whisked curd mixture and stir it. 

Your delicious auria is ready to be served with roti or poori. Here is a detailed recipe for you to try.