Thursday, January 28, 2010
Taazi Khumben Alu Mattar Kari
Well, just from looking all around the cookbook, I have figured out that 'Mattar' is peas. I think 'Kari' is curry. What I know for sure is that this is yummy, easy and really satisfying.
These are the things you need - button mushrooms, small new potatoes (or red-skinned potatoes), shelled green peas, ghee or oil, onion, fresh ginger and garlic.
You also need fresh coriander(cilantro), turmeric, chili powder, salt and garam masala.
First, wash your mushrooms, and if they are big, cut into quarters. Scrub the potatoes too, and cut them into 1 inch pieces. You will need about a half pound of each.
Slice a small onion into thin slices, then saute' in oil or ghee over gentle heat for about 3 minutes.
That will give you time to measure and chop 2 T. fresh coriander, a clove of garlic an a half teaspoon of fresh ginger. I put more ginger than that, and I still don't get a distinct ginger flavor, so feel free to add a little more if you like.
When the onion has been gently sautee'ing for 3 minutes, add the cilantro, garlic and ginger. Stir to combine and saute' another 3 to 4 minutes.
Next, add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon of chili powder. I am fairly certain that my bought-at-the-grocery-store cheapo chili powder is not the same thing that the people of India are putting into this dish. While it tastes fine, I bet their chili powder has more kick. Just sayin'.
Let that saute' for one minute. Look how beautiful! It will absorb the last of the oil, toast a bit, and the whole thing will become even more fragrant.
Add the potatoes, add the mushrooms, add 3/4 teaspoon of salt and add 1/4 cup hot tap water. Give it a stir, cover, and cook on low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
If you're using fresh peas, you add them when you add the potatoes, mushrooms, salt and water. If you're using frozen, wait a bit. Whenever you add them, you'll need a half cup.
OK, after that first 15 minutes of cooking, uncover, (If you are using frozen peas, you can add them now.) sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala and stir well. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, an additional 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Serve with rice or Indian bread.
I didn't make Indian bread of any sort. I cheated by buttering a flour tortilla and then steaming it until it was very soft and pliable. I confess to this, but I have no regrets.
I like to garnish these vegetables with some fresh cilantro and a little hot chili oil. Then, I like to eat them. After that, I like to just sit and feel happy and nourished and blissed out.
Gorgeous. Easy. Soul-satisfying. And if you don't eat it all, this dish re-heats very well. I hope you like it as much as I do!
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Adapted from The Complete Asian Cookbook by Charmaine Solomon
Taazi Khumben Alu Mattar Kari
(Curried Mushrooms, Potatoes and Peas)
Serves 3 - easy to double!
1/2 lb. small white mushrooms
1/2 lb. small new potatoes or red potatoes
1/2 c. shelled green peas, fresh or frozen
1/2 T. ghee or oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1/2 t. finely grated fresh ginger
1/2 to 1 clove crushed garlic (optional)
2T. finely chopped friesh coriander (cilantro) leaves
1/2 t. ground turmeric
1/4 t. chili powder, optional
1/4 c. hot water
3/4 t. salt
1/2 t. garam masala
Prepare items as listed above. Wash mushrooms - quarter them if they are large. Scrub potatoes and cut them into 1 inch pieces if they are larger. Frozen peas can be used instead of fresh, but add them during the last 15 minutes.
Heat ghee or oil in saucepan and saute' onion over low heat for 3 minutes. Add ginger, garlic and coriander leaves and saute' for 3 to 4 minutes longer, stirring occasionally. Add turmeric and chili powder, saute' for 1 minute, then add mushrooms, potatoes and fresh peas. Add water and salt and stir well. Cover and cook on low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover, add peas if frozen are being used, sprinkle with garam masala and stir well. Cover and cook for an additional 15 minutes (stirring occasionally) or until potatoes are tender. Serve with rice or Indian bread.