To briskly continue my regular series of cooking blog posts (previous post March 1st 2005) I present the vegetable dopiaza. I made one last night and it was yum, though I do admit to having been overly generous with all the spices – which I like but Louisa doesn’t.
Things to put in it
- Vegetable oil, 6 desert spoons or so
- 1 big onion, half diced, half sliced.
- 2 teaspoons garlic
- 2 teaspoons ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon asafoetida powder
- 1/2 teaspoon tumeric
- 2 chopped tomatoes (I used 1 can of chopped)
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon fenugreek leaves (methi)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon red chilli powder
- 1 chopped fresh chilli (green or red)
- Some mixed vegetables (I used 5 chopped small new potatoes, 5 small florets of cauliflower, a chopped pepper and a couple of chopped mushrooms.)
- 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- Handful of fresh coriander (chopped)
What to do with the things you put in it
- Heat the oil super hot. Add the diced onion half. Cook until light brown.
- Add the garlic and ginger. Cook for a bit (minute or so)
- Lower heat and add asafoetida powder and tumeric. Cook for a little bit.
- Add the tomatoes then the ground coriander, cumin seeds, garam masala, fenugreek, salt, chilli powder and the fresh chilli and a little water. Fry on medium heat to make a paste.
- Add any root veg and a little more water if necessary. Cook for 5 mins.
- Shallow fry the sliced onion half in another pan until brown.
- Add the other veg, black pepper and cinnamon and fresh coriander. Little more water if necessary.
- Sprinkle the browned onions on top.
- Pot lid on pod, steam on a low heat for 10 minutes or so.
- Eat with rice and a nan. Did I mention you should make rice and a nan too? Doh!
General advice: use generous teaspoons of everything but the salt. Don’t put too much chilli in – taste the paste at step 4 and add more chilli if you prefer. Louisa buys fresh chillis, chops them and then freezes them so we always have them in. Frozen fresh coriander isn’t so bad either. Garlic paste and Ginger paste speed things up and keep for months in the fridge, though lazy it does mean you have it in whenever you want it.
Adding the tomatoes in before the other spices stops the spices from burning- though I sort out that whole group of spices in a little dish before cooking anyway. Buy all the spices you need from one of your many local asian markets (ha!, there are loads of these here in Leeds/Bradford). Keep them in an air-tight container and they’ll keep forever. Ignore the best before – better to have “out of date” spices ready any time than none.
This recipe made two main meals with rice and a small nan, and one leftover big-ish lunch. Bear in mind that Louisa and I both eat big portions. No photos because we ate it too quick.