Sunday, 12 February 2012

Potato Dal, Curry Thing

Everyone knows curry right, each person has their own criterion for what a proper curry should be. To some and I would offer most, a curry man's curry is Indian in its roots. There are however many curries from all over the world, several east Asian countries have developed their own curries with uniquely eastern flavours. This huge variety provides an amazing array of tastes, spices and ingredients.

What I have here is something Chris and I developed over some time. Eventually getting the spice mix right, inclusion of lentils, water, tomatoes and lastly adding your own yoghurt to each plate at the end, as stirring it into the pot makes it split. 

I'm sure at some point we'll add something else but for now here is our take on vegetarian curry. It's hearty, extremely tasty with just the right balance of heat, spice, acidity and texture too keep even the most beer laden of curry-philes happy.

By the way, I added a lot of coriander, some people, Lisa included, hate it but I love the stuff, especially with this, they complement each other perfectly

Potato Dal

Spice Mix
7 Cardamom Pods, seeds only
1 Dried Birds Eye Chilli
3 Tsps Cumin seeds
1 Tsp Black Pepper Corns
2 Cloves
½ Tsp Fenugreek Seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1tsp Black Mustard seeds
1tsp Black Onion Seeds
2 Curry Leaves
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Turmeric

Other Ingredients

100g Red Lentils
100g Split peas
4 Large potatoes peeled and cubed
1 Tin of Chickpeas
1 Tin of Tomatoes
4 or 5 roughly chopped ripe tomatoes about to turn or another tin of tomatoes
500ml Veg Stock
1 Very large onion (or two medium) sliced
4 Cloves of Garlic finely chopped

1 Thumb size piece of ginger finely chopped
Handful of curry leaves
1tsp Black Mustard seeds
1tsp Black Onion Seeds

1 Large Tub of Natural Yoghurt
Bunch of Coriander
Chopped Red Chilli

Rice, Naan, Chapatti to serve

Soak the Lentils and split peas for an hour, rinse under a sieve until water runs clear. Simmer gently in water for an hour then drain

Take all the spice mix ingredients and toast in heavy pan until they start to smoke. Using a pestle and mortar or Grinder, grind until you achieve a powder.

In a large saucepan add 1 tablespoons of vegetable oil and a knob of butter. Heat and add the Mustard and Onion seeds, when they start to pop add the onions, stir fry for a minute or two then reduce the heat and sweat for 5 mins or until the onions are soft.

Increase the heat, add the garlic and ginger and stir fry for a min

Add the spice powder and stir-fry for 1 min.

Next add the tomatoes and bring to the boil, add the rest of the ingredients apart from the stock, stir well until all elements are coated. Add the stock and bay leaves, bring to the boil stirring frequently and reduce to a simmer, partially cover and simmer for 2 hours stirring occasionally

When its cooked and has the consistency, taste and season .

Serve in a big bowl with loads of Corriander and the accompaniment of your choice
Add the Yoghurt and or some fresh chillis to the plate

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