Saturday, September 01, 2007

For Dinner Tonight:

Cold Roast Lamb
Gajar Aloo
Hot Chocolate

I do so love meals that are as simple as this: cold meat, leftover from yesterday and something interesting on the vegetable front that can pretty much be left to cook by itself. And I love Indian food!

Gajar Aloo (Carrots & Potatoes) is a variation on a recipe from the wonderful Cooking Like Mummyji by Vicky Bhogal. The original is Gajar Aloo Mattar, the mattar being peas, which I did not have, and also contains lots of lovely fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves, unobtainable in these parts. I didn't have any ground gram masala, so used curry powder instead. All these alterations made it far from authentic but the spirit of the book is one of 'adapt and innovate'. If you like Indian food, I highly recommend it. It contains recipes for the sort of food that you would eat if you went to stay with some Punjabi friends for a week, rather than the sort of thing you might eat at a restaurant. It also gives a fascinating insight into the life of the Sikh community in the UK.

Here is the dish I ended up cooking - enough for two greedy people or four as a side dish with other things.

2 onions, chopped
1 fat clove of garlic, chopped
oil to cook them in
1 tsp salt
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp curry powder
2 inches of fresh ginger, grated
Tomatoes from 1 tin of plum tomatoes, drained and chopped up
As many potatoes and carrots as you want (we used about 6 medium sized potatoes and 10 tiny carrots - potatoes, peeled and diced, carrots sliced)
Butter, to serve

Cook the onions and garlic in the oil until golden. Add salt, tumeric, curry powder and ginger and stir well. Add chopped tomatoes and cook until it looks shiny and the oil begins to separate a bit. Add the potatoes and carrots and stir well to coat. Add 1/4 - 1/2 water, cover and cook until the veg is tender (about 15 mins). Remove lid to evaporate any excess water and stir in a large or small pat of butter as you feel so inclined.

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