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Cumin-Coriander Potatoes with Cilantro (Patates Mekhalel)

4 Servings

20 minutes 10 minutes active

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In Cairo, patates mekhalel are served by street vendors as a side to liver sandwiches, their gentle acidity and crunchy spices balancing the richness of the liver. For our version, we peel, cut and cook the potatoes in water seasoned with both salt and vinegar, then dress the hot, just-drained potatoes with additional vinegar. To lightly crush the cumin and coriander seeds, use a mortar and pestle or the back of a heavy pan, or pulse them several times in a spice grinder. If you can't find hot paprika, use 2 teaspoons sweet paprika plus ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper.




Don't overcook the potatoes; the chunks should be tender but not fall apart. Also, don't allow the garlic to brown in the oil or its flavor may be acrid and bitter. Remove the pan from the heat as soon as the garlic begins to turn golden and immediately add the paprika and honey, which lower the oil's temperature.

20 minutes

10 minutes active


  • pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks

  • ½

    cup white vinegar, divided


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Shari M.

I loved the mechanical spice grinder Bianca used to grind the cumin and coriander. Where is it from, what is it called and where can I find one?

Janelle C.

Hi Shari,

You can find the grinder in our store here:

The Milk Street Team

Shari M.

Many thanks. I thought I had searched for it in your store.

Shari M.

Many thanks. I thought I had searched for it in your store.

David K.

This recipe is amazing and easy! Another family favorite.