The ultimate recipe for Masala Chips & Vegan Avocado Mayo. Made from homemade chips and the perfect blend of Indian-style masalas. Serve them with my smooth and creamy avocado mayo for a vegan take on this street food favourite.
Been there, done that, stayed for dinner
Every now and again I crave the food swaddled most deeply within my memories. They aren’t always meals I’ve eaten multiple times. Sometimes they’re the ones closely tethered to people, emotions and of course, to taste. They are edible memories preserved through senses and relationships.
A sherbet fountain from my parent’s sweet shop, my late father-in-law’s Sunday morning bhajiya, the caramel buttercream in my wedding cake and the takeaway pizza I devoured in my hospital bed after my son was born.
One deep inhale and I’m right back there; A little girl picking candy from a shelf, a daughter-in-law (to be) trying to make a good impression, a beaming bride and a terrified new mother.
Memories of Masala Chips
Masala chips for supper were somewhat of a tradition in our family when I was growing up. Once every two or three months, my dad would pick up a bag of red potatoes to make these for us all. He would lock up the shop and come upstairs to take over the kitchen with the clattering of multiple pots and pans.
My brother would drown his chips in ketchup and I would prefer mine on the dry side. Dad has always had a penchant for hot food so he would add chillies and my mum chose to eat them as they came. In their own way, these Masala Chips represent paternal love and the warmth of knowing I have a father who has always shown up, no matter how tired.
What are the best potatoes for making Masala Chips?
Any floury variety of potato is ideal for making masala chips. In the UK, both King Edward and Maris Piper are excellent choices. I used King Edward potatoes for this recipe.
Do I have to peel the potatoes?
Not at all. If you like skin-on chips, don’t peel the potatoes.
How should I cut my potatoes?
Use a sharp knife or a chip slicer to cut the potatoes. I love the rustic feel of hand-cut chips (this is how I grew up eating them). The chips can be as thick or as thin as you like, just make sure they are all roughly similar in thickness so they cook evenly. Thin chips will take less time to cook compared to thick-cut chips. Adjust the cooking time to suit the cut of your chips. Mine were neither thick, nor thin so the timings mentioned in my recipe are an average.
Why do you soak the potatoes in cold water?
Once cut, the potatoes need to be kept in a bowl of cold water. We do this for two reasons:
1. The water helps to remove excess starch from the surface of the potatoes (so they don’t stick together during the cooking process).
2. To stop the potatoes from oxidising (turning brown). The cold water keeps them crisp and fresh until you’re ready to cook. You can slice the potatoes a few hours ahead of when they’re needed and keep them in a bowl of cold water (refrigerated).
Masala Chips & Vegan Avocado Mayo: Is it vegan?
My easy from-scratch recipe is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Masala Chips & Vegan Avocado Mayo: Is it gluten free?
No. However, this recipe can be made gluten free by simply leaving out the asafoetida in the sauce, or by using a wheat-free compounded asafoetida instead. This recipe is also free from soy. Ensure the vegan mayo you use is free from any applicable allergens before using.
Can I use frozen chips/French fries to make masala chips?
Absolutely. If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to make Masala Chips at home, bake or air fry frozen chips/fries according to the package instructions. Make the sauce according to the recipe and toss with the cooked chips for an easy frying-free version of these Masala Chips.
Ingredients you’ll need to make Masala Chips & Vegan Avocado Mayo
- Floury variety of potato, such as King Edward or Maris Piper (UK)
- Tomato passata (sieved tomatoes from a jar, can or carton)
- Lemon juice
- Chilli powder
- Black salt or chaat masala
- Ground cumin
- Ground coriander
- Garlic powder
- Fresh coriander
- Spring onions
- Lime wedges
- Large, ripe avocados (I used Hass)
- Vegan mayo of your choice
- Lime juice
- Black pepper
For the chips
- 1 kg floury potatoes such as King Edward
- 2 L oil for deep frying (I used rapeseed but you can use sunflower, vegetable or any with a high smoke point)
For the masala sauce
- 400 g tomato passata (you can also use a can of chopped tomatoes, blended)
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp asafoetida
- 1 tsp chilli powder or to taste
- 1/2 tsp black salt
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- Chopped coriander to garnish
- Spring onions to garnish
- Lime wedges to serve
For the avocado mayo
- 2 large ripe avocados
- 3 tbsp vegan mayo
- Juice of 2 limes
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Salt to taste
To make the avocado mayo
- Place all the ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. You may need to add a splash of water if the blender is struggling to process the ingredients. Add no more than 2 tbsp water.
To make the sauce for the masala chips
- Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a pan. Add the asafoetida, chilli powder, garlic powder, ground cumin and ground coriander. Sauté for a moment and then stir in the tomatoes, salt, sugar and lemon juice. Cover and simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
To make the chips
- Peel the potatoes and slice into chip-sized batons, as large or as small as you like. Mine were about 2cm in width. Place the sliced potatoes in a large bowl of cold water to remove excess starch and stop the potatoes turning brown.
- When you’re ready to fry, place the uncooked chips on a clean, dry tea towel and pat well to absorb all the water. Ensure you do this thoroughly as they need to be dry or the oil will spit and crackle.
- In a deep pan, heat the oil to 160°C/320°F. The chips should bubble gently in the oil. Deep fry the chips in small batches until softened, about 70% cooked and still pale in colour (this should take about 4 minutes per batch). Remove from the oil with a perforated spoon to drain away excess oil. Place the chips on a plate.
- Increase the temperature of the oil to 200°C/400°F. The chips should sizzle much more than the first frying. Fry the chips in small batches until golden all over (this should take about 4-5 minutes per batch). Place on a plate lined with kitchen paper to absorb excess oil.
- Place the chips in a bowl and add the masala chip sauce. Toss gently, taking care not to break the chips. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with chopped coriander and spring onions. Serve with the avocado mayo.
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