Recipe: The way to curry up some flavour

THIS recipe, the next to last in our series on curries, comes from Mira Bogacki of Warsaw. She discovered it while she was studying in London, in the excellent Greens Cook Book (Bantam Press). The book is American; and I suspect that the recipe hails from the greatest of all vegetarian cuisines, that of southern India.

Potato Curry

Serves 6

Ingredients: 2lb (900g) new potatoes

1lb carrots (450g)

1 1/2 lb (675g) tomatoes, fresh or tinned

2 1/2 tsp cumin seeds

3tsp coriander seeds

1-inch piece of cinnamon stick

1tsp cardamom seeds

8 cloves

1/4 tsp black peppercorns

8tbs ghee or vegetable oil

1 large red onion, diced into 1/2 -inch cubes

1 clove garlic, minced

1 1/2 -2oz (40-60g) ginger, peeled and minced

1/4 tsp grated nutmeg

1/2 tsp turmeric

6fl oz (170ml) yoghurt

4-8fl oz (115-225ml) cream

2tbs chopped coriander leaves, plus whole sprigs for garnish


Preparation: Peel potatoes, then cut in halves or thirds, nor more than 1/2 -inch thick. Reserve in a bowl of water. Peel carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces. Blanche, peel and seed tomatoes, then chop. Assemble whole spices and grind. Drain potatoes, blot dry. Using a large frying pan or casserole, heat 4tbs ghee or oil, add potatoes and stir over medium heat. Fry until golden, then pierce each several times with knife. Remove from pan. Add 2tbs ghee, cook carrots until half-done. Return potatoes to pan.

In a second pan, heat 2tbs ghee, add onions and fry until deep brown but not burnt. Add garlic, ginger, ground spices, nutmeg and turmeric, followed by tomatoes and yoghurt. Stir. Transfer sauce to carrots and potatoes. Simmer until the vegetables have finished cooking, then add cream and cook another few minutes. Add salt and adjust seasoning. Stir in coriander.

Ms Bogacki will receive two bottles of Pinot Grigio 1992 Borgo Molino, made in the Friuli and purchased by us from Reid Wines, near Bristol. New entries are welcome for the following category: spiced breads and cakes. Those whose recipes we print will receive a bottle of 1989 Bukkuram de Bartoli, a figgy-tasting Sicilian muscat. Send recipes, stating the source, to: Emily Green, Weekend, The Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB.