Wednesday, January 30, 2008

vegetables in a yogurt curry

the origins of this dish like so many of my others happened because i never seem to have the proper ingredients around. i end up using what i always seem to magically have on hand - bell peppers and potatoes. did i tell you i'm trying to cut down on carbs?

this was originally made for me on my recent trip to india by my dear neighbor in bombay. auntie made it using fresh drumsticks (or saragvo in gujarati) picked straight from our building drumstick tree. i mean talk about eating local. she had the watchman get his big ole' bamboo pole and knock these suckers down. this is a huge deal guys. if you've ever seen a drumstick plant you know how tall those things get. it was taller than our 4 story building. props to the watchman.

i'd like to say this is more of what you would find peasants in a small village eating, but i added certain spices that are considered more "richer" or mughlai if you will. but hey, not to appear as the elitist food snob or anything, i'm sure they'll have access to all the same ingredients as soon as that Tesco's opens up... with the multiplex downstairs and the M.A.C. counter on floor 3. oh yea, and Rollback Wally. can't leave them out from all their corporate rape and mongering.

so folks, here's the deal - it looks long because of the ingredients (mostly spices), but i really did make it in under 30 min. if you have your mise en place, it's a quick 5 step process that can be done simutaneously. and unless you have a drumstick tree in your front yard, i would suggest using whatever vegetables you got goin on in the fridge. i urge you all to try it out because it's so spicy and fragrant, and at the same time not in the least bit pretentious.

Vegetables in a yogurt curry
serves 4-6
prep time: 5 min
microwave time: 15 min
cook time: 15 min

step 1:

  • put 2 cups of chopped veggies with some water in a microwave safe bowl and heat until the veggies are cooked about 10-15 min. others i suggest are peas, carrots, red bell peppers

step 2:

  • meanwhile grind the following: an inch of ginger, 4 cloves garlic, 2 green chillis

step 3:

  • heat about 4-5 tbspn oil in a nonstick pan and add a cup of besan or chickpea flour and saute for 6-8 minutes until the flour is cooked thru

step 4: the tadka or tempering of spices

  • in a little saucepan, heat 2 tbspn oil
  • add a tspn mustard seeds and after they pop, add the following:
  • tspn each of cumin, fenugreek and fennel seeds
  • 6 cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 4 cardamon pods
  • 2 dried red chilis
  • pinch of hing or asafeotida
  • 1/2 tspn turmeric
  • 1 tspn cumin powder
  • 1 tspn coriander powder
  • 1 tspn red chili powder
  • a sprig of curry leaves
  • add the ginger-garlic-chili mixture saute this for 3-4 minutes

step 5:

  • in a bowl mix 2 cups yogurt with 2 cups water and add this to the roasted chickpea flour
  • mix well then add the above sauteed spice mixture from step 4
  • add in the drained microwaved veggies
  • add salt to taste
  • cook on low for 5-10 min until everything is incorporated well, mix occasionally
  • garnish with cilantro
  • serve with roti or indian flatbread

Listening to: my favorite - Bob Marley & The Wailers, 'Jah Live' from their album Rastaman Vibration


Pooja said...

yellow curry looks superb :) . btw, yello is my fav color too ;). thanks for sharing.

Alpa said...

Pooja - Thanks for being so sweet, I still wish it was the color of Kate's dress :)

LisaRene said...

Indian food is one of my favorites. I've been dabbling in some Indian cooking but never get the spices quite right. I keep learning little bits here and there. You just taught me about "tadka", I had not heard that word before seeing it on your blog and I just looked it up :)

Alpa said...

Lisarene - Hi there, try it out if you feel inclined... i understand that it looks like so much trouble with a ton of diff spices. if you learn 2 or 3 dishes, the methods are usually the same. Just what you add to the tempering (toasting of spices) is different. Thanks for visiting!

Shruti Shah said...

Wuhoo. I was looking for this recipe as my mum made this one! Thanks for sharing. trying it out now :)