After eating Japanese food for so many days I was in the mood for something with a bit more flavor tonight. I really love Indian food - especially the food from Southern India. This dish, although seasoned with spices from the South has its origins in Northern India. This is Aloo Gobi or potato and cauliflower.
The ingredients are:
3 cups of cut up cauliflower
3 small potatoes, cut into small wedges
1 tsp brown mustard seed
1 tbsp urid dal
1 tsp cumin seed, whole
a dash of hing (asafoetida)
2 tbsp coriander powder
about 1 inch of ginger, minced
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp red chili powder
2 tsp Madras curry powder
1/4 cup water
2 tsp oil
Chopped fresh cilantro (I was out of cilantro tonight)
To start the process, the coriander, ginger, turmeric, chili and curry powder were made into a paste with about 1/4 cup of water and set aside.
A pan was heated with a couple of tsp of oil until hot but not smoking. The mustard seed, urid dal and cumin seeds were added to the oil and fried until the mustard popped and the urid started to turn brown. Once that point was reached, a dash of asafoetida powder (hing) was added.
The water and spice paste was then added to the hot pan and fried for about 30 seconds. The water in the paste helps to keep the spices from burning during this process and is a good trick to making a nicely flavored base for many types of dishes like this.
The cauliflower and potato were added to the pot along with some salt and pepper to taste. This was stirred together well and the pan was covered. The mixture was cooked for about 15 minutes until the vegetables were tender. During this time the mixture was carefully stirred three or four times. If it is a little dry you can add a bit of water to it (I did).
Once it is cooked, just plate it and you're good to go. If you have fresh cilantro that should be sprinkled on top.
This aloo gobi was served along with some fresh baked bread (some naan or other Indian bread would have been great with it!). I also made a yellow split pea and onion soup which was made in the pressure cooker with a similar spice mixture base that I used for the aloo gobi.
Soup and Aloo Gobi.
See those wonderful yellow split peas?
This was a French style bread that was perfect for mopping up the spicy soup.