mushroom dopiaza

Dopiaza is a Persian term that means either “double onion” or “onion added twice”.  The recipe has a lot more onion than expected and are added in two stages into the dish.

This dish, kumbh dopiaza, is from the Mughlai tradition, but unlike most of the similar recipes, this one is quite simple. It features mushrooms cooked in a tomato masala.

This dish needs to have large mushroom pieces. Choose medium button mushrooms of a consistent 3cm size then halve them. Do not wash the mushrooms – just use a damp cloth to wipe them clean. These mushrooms need to be just cooked and definitely not overcooked. To do this you need to check the moisture content. It would be easy to add water to make the cooking simpler, but you want this to be a dry dish.

The onions added late in the cooking need to be crisp and browned, but also cooked enough.

This is a wonderful dish to serve as a simple meal with plain rice, or as part of a larger vegetarian feast.

the recipe

preparation:5 mins
cook:25 mins
total:30 mins
servings:4 servings
calories:173 kcal



to cook

to serve



  • Peel the onions. Quarter one and a half onions. Halve each of the quarters then peel the layers apart giving you triangular pieces of onion. This is the onion you will add later, after browning them. Finely chop the remaining one and a half onions. Set both of these aside separately.
  • Make a paste from the garlic and ginger, adding as little water as possible. Set aside.
  • Heat the gingelly oil over a medium heat in a kadai or pan. When hot add the triangular pieces of onion. Stirring frequently, cook the onions until the edges start to turn brown which should take around five minutes. You want the onions to be cooked, but not softened.
  • Remove the onions with a slotted spoon, place on kitchen paper to drain and set aside.

to cook

  • Using the same pan, add the bay leaf, finely chopped onions and sprinkle with salt. Stirring frequently, cook the onions until they become translucent and are starting to brown – this will take around five minutes.
  • Add the ginger-garlic paste, mix well and fry until the raw aroma of ginger-garlic goes away, which should take two minutes.
  • Add the chopped tomato, mix well and fry for one minute.
  • Add the turmeric and Kashmiri chilli powders, ground coriander and cumin seeds. Mix well.
  • Fry this mix until the tomato softens and the oil starts to separate, which will take around five minutes. Gently mash the mixture with the back of a spoon.
  • Add the mushrooms and mix well. Fry, stirring continuously. The mushrooms may release moisture and you need to continue to fry until this moisture dries. You want the mushrooms just cooked, and a quite dry masala. This should take around 10 minutes. The mushrooms should not become soft.

to serve

  • When the mushrooms are cooked, add the reserved onion triangles, garam masala, green chilli and coriander leaves. Mix well and once hot, serve.
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