Today, instead of posting a snippet from my WIP (Work-In-Progress), I’m posting something related to it. Below is the recipe for Aloo Subzi (a traditional, but simple, potato curry) that one of my protagonists loves.
Indian cuisine lends itself very naturally to customizations. This recipe is my own take on the age-old recipe of the same name. Even though I learned it by watching my mom cook, this recipe, along with many others that I use, has deviated from hers owing to restrictions in time and the availability of ingredients.
- 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into two-inch cubes
- 2 medium tomatoes, chopped into inch-long slices
- 2 green chillies, cut length-wise
- 1 stem of curry leaves, the leaves separated from the stem
- 2 red, dried chillies, broken into two pieces each
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- ½ cup cilantro, finely chopped
- ½ cup water
- salt, to taste
1. Place a skillet on a medium flame and add oil to it. Add cumin, the two kinds of chillies, curry leaves and garlic to the oil.
2. Leave the spices alone for a couple of minutes – they release their flavor when they warm up – and then add the onion to the skillet. Let it cook for about four to five minutes, or until the onion becomes golden brown and translucent.
3. Add tomatoes to this mixture and let them cook for a few minutes, until they become soft. Make sure you keep stirring, so that the ingredients do not stick to the bottom of the skillet.
4. Add potatoes now and stir them for a few minutes before adding salt and water. Place a heavy lid on the skillet to help the vegetables cook with the help of the steam that is released.
5. Keep stirring every few minutes so it doesn’t burn. It may take about 10 to 15 minutes for the curry to be ready. Basically, it is ready when there’s not much liquid left in the skillet and the potatoes break easily when touched with a spoon.
6. Remove from flame, transfer to a serving dish and garnish with cilantro.
For additional color, flavor, and nutrition, a handful of carrots pieces (inch-size cubes), and a handful of fresh green peas can be tossed into this recipe in step 4.
The resulting curry will taste great when served hot either with roti or white rice.