Tag Archives: onions

Tangy Vegan Curry

Vegan curry with Basmati rice and roti
Tangy Vegan curry with Basmati rice and Roti

Serves 4

This curry could be adapted to use any combination of vegetables, but to my personal taste, is enhanced if potato is included.

We had a surplus of zucchini and had to dispose of some tomato plants that weren’t surviving very well in the heat and dryness of our front porch – hence the green tomatoes.   Ripe, red tomatoes would do just as well, as would using tofu in the mix.

The mix of vegetables in the curry is about 1/3 potatoes, 1/3 zucchini and 1/3 green tomatoes.

I served this curry with white Basmati rice and freshly-made Roti.

Ingredients

  • Potatoes (a good floury variety)
  • Green tomatoes
  • Zucchini (starchy Costata Romanesco is ideal)
  • 1 medium onion (finely sliced)
  • Sunflower oil
  • Freshly crushed garlic (2 or 3 cloves)
  • Fresh chili to taste (I prefer Habanero)
  • 1 tablespoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Lemon juice (1/2 large or 1 smallish lemon)

Preparation

Chilli, spices, garlic and onion

Habanero chilli, spices and crushed garlic
Habanero chilli, spices and crushed garlic

Finely chop the chilli, measure the spices, crush the garlic and slice the onion evenly, ahead of time.  This will enable the curry to be cooked quickly, which is important if you wish to retain the best features of the ingredients.

Potatoes

Sauteed potatoes
Sauteed potatoes

Peel and dice about 3 medium sized potatoes and sauté them in  a little oil until they are cooked through and have started to develop a crispy golden coating.  Remove these from the pan and set aside.

Zucchini

Sautéed zucchini
Sautéed zucchini

Do the same with the zucchinis.  Slice them into chunky pieces and sauté them in a little hot oil until they are ‘just’ beginning to cook through and have developed a golden colouring.  Set these aside, also.

Green Tomatoes

Roughly chopped green tomatoes
Roughly chopped green tomatoes

Peel and roughly chop the green tomatoes.  They can be irregular in size as long as they aren’t too thick – they will soon soften once they are added to the curry.

Method

Wipe out the pan, add a couple of tablespoons of oil and raise the heat.  When it is good and hot, add about a tablespoon of black mustard seeds and heat them until they start to pop.  Then add the turmeric, cumin, coriander seeds, chilli, ginger and lemon juice to the pan and cook for 1 minute.

Turn the heat down to less than half way and add the sliced onion.  Gently cook this until it turns transparent, but don’t over-cook it – you want to still be able to see the slices in the curry.  About half way through this cooking process, stir in the crushed garlic so that it has the chance to cook through.

Add the vegetables to the onion and spices and stir through
Add the vegetables to the onion and spices and stir through

When the onion is ready, add the potato, zucchini and green tomato.  Stir these through carefully, mixing them in with the spices and onion but taking care to keep the pieces intact.  Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and turn the heat down to low.

Gently cook until the tomatoes have softened, and the zucchini and potatoes are well-heated, stirring from time to time.  This should take no more than 20 minutes.

When the curry is cooked through, check for seasoning and serve.

Sweet and Spicy Plum Sauce

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Ingredients

  • 1 kg plums (halved and with stones removed)
  • 2 onions
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 12 whole cloves
  • 6 allspice
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 2 cm length of cinnamon stick
  • 2 cm length of peeled root ginger (skin removed)
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 3/4 cup soft brown sugar
  • 1 tsp plain salt
  • 1 1/4 cups malt vinegar

Method

Wash and chop plums coarsely.  Peel and chop onions.

Add both the plums and the onions to a large cooking pan, along with the 1/4 cup of water.  Cook gently until soft.

Tie the cloves, allspice, peppercorns, cinnamon stick, root ginger and mustard seeds in a muslin bag using a length of string.  Place the spice bag in the pan so that it is submerged in the plum/onion mixture and tie the end to the handle for easy removal.  Add the brown sugar, salt and malt vinegar.

Cook uncovered, until mushy, then push through a colander or sieve.

Return the sieved pulp to a saucepan and simmer until it has reached the thickness of sauce required.

Bottle using your usual method in hot sterilised jars.  Seal and store.

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Additional Notes

The easiest way to remove the skin from root ginger is by scraping gently with the curved edge of a small spoon.

This time round I used around 2/3 red-fleshed and 1/3 yellow-fleshed plums.  Both had dark red skins.

I used the water bath method, heating the filled jars at 90C for 20 minutes.

This recipe makes around 600 – 800 mls, depending on how thorough you are with pushing the pulp through the sieve.

The sauce itself lasts a year and possibly longer.  We tend to use it all before more than a year has elapsed.

As it ages it takes on a very rich dark colour, with a notable improvement in flavour.