Maria, our neighbor from the first floor and the mother of Katia who is in CP in the girls’ school, came over this Tuesday afternoon for a “how-to-cook-a-curry” demo.
Carrot salad -which was the other thing I showed her to make, since she and her husband liked it very much at a PTA lunch in December- and jeera pulav on the side made for a nice dinner that evening. The girls love this curry as much as they do rajma or chicken curry and they were quite pleased to find three of their favorite things on the table.
The quantity here was enough for the four of us, Maria’s family and there was some left over as well.
8 eggs – hard boiled, shelled and sliced in half
5 large potatoes, peeled and cut in to 3 or 4 chunks across the length
4-5 large onions, peeled and chopped quite fine
8 tablespoons of tomato puree (made from canned tomatoes)
5 cloves of garlic, peeled and grated
a 1 and a 1/2 inch square chunk of peeled ginger, grated
3/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder
3/4th or 1 teaspoon of coriander powder
1/2 or 3/4th teaspoon of garam masala
1 teaspoon of kashmiri/deghi chilli powder
1 teaspoon of ajwain seeds (optional)
1/2 a teaspoon of cumin seeds
3 pods of black cardamom
2-3 small sticks of cinnamon
salt to taste
6 tablespoons of sunflower oil
Warm the oil in a pressure cooker, add the black cardamom and cinnamon, then when their aroma is released add the ajwain seeds and the cumin seeds. When these begin to brown, add the onions and fry at a medium hot temperature till they are golden brown in color. Now add the potatoes and fry these with the onions till the potatoes start to acquire a crisp, golden color and the onions turn quite brown. Add the ginger and garlic halfway through this process. Add the tomato puree next and cook till the oil starts to appear on the sides. Add the dry spices now and cook everything together or another 2-3 minutes. Season with salt, put about 3-4 cups of boiled water and pressure cook for as many whistles as are needed for the potatoes to be soft enough (2-4 whistles are usually enough because the potatoes tend to be half-way there by this point anyway).
When the cooker can be opened, add the boiled and sliced egg halves to the curry and simmer for 7-8 minutes or till the curry is the consistency/thickness you want, stirring once in a while.
Chopped, fresh green coriander makes a great garnish.