Prep 45 mins
Cook 1 hr 45 mins
If you want to study the art of meatless barbecue, India is the place to do it. So says Steve Raichlen in his Globe-Trotter Guide to BBQ.This nation of more than a billion people has more vegetarians than there are people in the USA. Over the centuries, Indian grill masters have evolved a higly sophisticated style of vegetarian barbecue - dishes bursting with flavor (not to mention dairy and grain proteins). Their grilling is so complex and satisfying, you'll never miss the meat! Tandoori "aloo" potato - turns up at grill parlors throughout northern India. The best Raichlen has ever tasted came from the landmark restaurant Moti Mahal in Delhi, the potatoes were packed with cheese, slathered with spice paste, and crusted with sesame seeds. What's not to like? If unable to find the yogurt for some reason, place regular yogurt in cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a large bowl. Cover and chill overnight to drain & voilá! Bon Appetit Magazine, July 2009 edition. There are cooling times that vary - depending on when you serve these wonderful potatoes.:)
- 1 cup packed coarsely grated monterey jack cheese (about 4 ounces)
- 3 large unpeeled russet potatoes, scrubbed (each about 16 ounces)
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 green onion, finely chopped
- 1 serrano chili, seeded, minced
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- coarse kosher salt
YOGURT SPICE PASTE
- 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 2 teaspoons chopped peeled fresh ginger
- 2 teaspoons sweet paprika or 2 teaspoons hot paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1⁄2 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt (A thick yogurt, sold at Whole Foods Market or Trader Joes or at Greek markets)
- 4 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1⁄2 cup sesame seeds (about 2.6 ounces)
- POTATOES & STUFFING:.
- Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 400°F
- Place potatoes directly on oven rack and bake until tender when pierced with fork, about 1 hour 15 minutes.
- Transfer to platter and let stand until cool enough to handle. ( Can be made 1 day ahead; Cover and chill.)*.
- Cut potatoes horizontally in half.
- Using spoon, scoop out pulp, leaving 1/3-inch-thick shell.
- Transfer potato pulp to medium bowl and mash; mix in cheese, melted butter, cilantro, green onion, chile, and sesame seeds.
- Season potato mixture generously with salt and pepper; divide among potato shells.(Can be made 6 hours ahead.)**
- Cover and chill.
- YOGURT-SPICE PASTE:.
- Combine first 6 ingredients in processor.
- Using on/off turns, blend until mixture is finely chopped.
- Add yogurt, oil, and lemon juice and process until smooth puree forms.
- Transfer to small bowl.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.(Can be made 6 hours ahead.)***
- Cover and refrigerate.
- Remove top rack from grill.
- Place disposable aluminum baking pan in center of bottom rack (if using 2-burner gas grill, place pan on 1 side of burner).
- Add enough water to pan to reach depth of 1 inch.
- Prepare barbecue (medium heat).
- If using charcoal grill, light briquettes in chimney and pour half onto rack on each side of disposable pan.
- If using 3-burner gas grill, light burners on left and right, leaving center burner off.
- If using 2-burner gas grill, light burner on side opposite disposable pan.
- Return top rack to grill.
- Place sheet of foil on grill rack above unlit burner; brush with vegetable oil.
- Place sesame seeds on small plate.
- Place half of yogurt-spice paste in shallow bowl and reserve.
- Spread remaining yogurt-spice paste over top of potato filling in each potato half.
- Sprinkle with half of sesame seeds.
- Dip bottom of each potato half into reserved spice paste, then dip into remaining sesame seeds.
- Place potatoes atop foil on grill rack above disposable pan.
- Cover barbecue and grill until potatoes are heated through and bubbling in center, 25 to 30 minutes.
- Transfer potatoes to platter and serve.