I’ve always been a fan of the simple things in life, especially when it comes to food. Others can keep their weird and wonderful vegetables- okra, bitter gourd, snake gourd etc. I’m happiest with a carrot. Add some potato and you’ve got a party-in-your-mouth sort of situation. So, having been away from mum’s cooking long enough to really miss it I decided to make a punjabi dry curry, “Sabji” with potato “aloo” and carrot “gajar”: “Aloo gajar sabji”. Here’s how I did it:
4 Tbs Olive Oil
1 tsp Cumin Seeds
1tsp Coriander Seeds
5 – 6 Garlic Cloves, peeled and finely chopped
2 Large Onions, peeled and diced
4 – 5 Medium Sized Carrots, chopped into 1cm cubes
2 Medium Sized Potatoes, chopped into 2cm cubes
3 tbs Grated Ginger
1 Medium Green Chilli, chopped (or to taste)
1 tbs Salt
1/2 tsp Tumeric
1 tsp Garam Masalla
Coriander to garnish.
Tip: Start by chopping everything so that it is ready for when you need it.
- Heat the oil in a medium-sized pot on medium heat. Add the coriander seeds and cumin seeds whole. If you prefer to grind in a mortar and pestle then that works too. Fry for about a minute until you can smell the spices cooking.
- Add the garlic and mix up with the spices. Fry for about 2 – 3 minutes.
- Once the garlic is nice and golden in colour add in the onions. Mix it all up and allow the onions to cook on a medium heat, with the lid on for about 10 minutes until golden.
- Once the onions are golden in colour add in the grated ginger and chilli and stir well. Also add the salt and turmeric and mix everything together. It should have a nice orange colour but careful not to add too much turmeric as you don’t need it to glow in the dark!
- Add the potato and mix well. Put the lid back on for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes. If the mixture starts to stick to the bottom add a tablespoon of boiling water and turn down the heat. You want the potatoes to be about half-cooked before you add in the carrot.
- Once the potatoes are starting to soften add in the carrot and mix everything evenly. Put the lid back on the pot and allow to cook for about 10 – 15 minutes on a low-medium heat, stirring occasionally. Again be careful not to let it stick to the bottom of the pot.
- You’ll know it’s ready when the potatoes and carrots mush easily under your spoon. Add in the garam masalla and carefully stir into the sabji.
- Garnish with coriander and serve hot with chapatis, tortilla wraps or pitta bread. Greek yoghurt on the side is good too.