Cauliflower, Cashew, Coconut Curry With Peas

1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 green chile, roughly chopped (seeded if you prefer less heat)
Kosher salt
4 tablespoons canola oil
2 large onions, finely chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chile powder
1 large head cauliflower (about 1 1/4 pounds), broken into bite-size florets
1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
4 ounces unsalted cashews (about 3/4 cup)
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1 small bunch cilantro, leaves chopped, for serving
1 lemon wedge, for serving
Cooked basmati rice, for serving

Place the ginger, garlic and green chile in a mortar and pestle with a pinch of salt. Mash until a paste forms and set aside. Alternately, finely chop the ginger, garlic and green chile together, sprinkle with a pinch of salt, then mash into a coarse paste using the flat portion of your chef’s knife.

In a large skillet with a lid, heat 3 tablespoons oil over medium. Cook the onions until golden, about 10 minutes. Add the ginger paste and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes.

Stir in the tomato paste, coriander, cumin, chile powder and 1 1/4 teaspoons salt. Stir in the cauliflower and coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the cauliflower is tender, 10 to 12 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a small skillet over medium. Fry the cashews, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.

Add the peas and garam masala to the cauliflower mixture and cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt.

Top the curry with the cashews, cilantro and a squeeze of lemon just before serving. Serve with a big steaming bowl of basmati rice.

Quick Chicken Vindaloo

To start:
1 1/2 lb. chicken breast boneless, skinless, cut into 3/4″ cubes
2 Tbsp cooking oil divided
1 small onion finely diced
4 cloves garlic finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp ginger paste or 1 tsp grated fresh ginger

Spice Mix:
1 1/2 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp coriander
1 1/2 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 tsp mustard powder
1 1/2 tsp white or brown sugar
3/4 tsp cumin
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp fine salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes plus more, to taste, for more heat or omit for no heat

To finish:
1/4 cup tomato paste
6 Tbsp vinegar white, white wine or red wine vinegar
2 cups water or chicken broth or a mixture of both

To serve:
Chopped fresh cilantro or flat-leafed parsley

Prepare the spice mix by combining all the spices in a small bowl. Set aside.

In a large saucepan with a lid, heat 1 Tbsp oil over medium heat. Add cubed chicken and cook until you don’t see any raw spots, 3-4 minutes. Remove from pot to a plate.

Add 1 Tbsp more oil to the pot. Add the diced onion and cook, stirring, until quite soft and starting to brown lightly, about 4-5 minutes. (I like to add a splash of water to the pot about half way through cooking onions, which loosens any brown bits on the bottom of the pan and flavours the onions).

Add the garlic and ginger to the pot and cook, stirring, another 30-45 seconds. Add the prepared spice mix to the pot and cook, stirring, for 45 seconds – 1 minute.

Add the tomato paste to the pot and stir to combine.

Add the vinegar and water or chicken stock to the pot and stir.

Return the chicken to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and cover the pot with a lid.

Allow the curry to simmer covered for about 20 minutes, for the flavours to blend and the chicken to cook through. Remove the lid and simmer another further 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, to thicken the sauce.

Taste sauce and add salt as needed (it probably will need some to bring out all the flavours).

Serve garnished with chopped fresh cilantro or parsley, with basmati rice and Naan bread, if you like.

Note: ou’d like a smoother sauce (better for dipping!) and you don’t mind an extra step, place your chopped onions, garlic and ginger in a food processor and process into a paste. Use in the recipe the same as the chopped onions, except cook for a bit less time.

Indian Spiced Stew with Chicken and Potatoes

3 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 large skin-on/bone-in chicken breasts (or can use boneless)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 small onion finely chopped
4 cloves garlic chopped
1 Tbsp finely grated ginger
2 Tbsp tomato paste
2 tsp garam masala
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground turmeric
1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 – 3/4 tsp cayennne pepper (depending on how spicy like it or you can omit)
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth (plus a bit more thinning, if necessary)
3/4 cup tomato purée
1/2 cup heavy cream (can use a lighter cream)
1/2 pound small Yukon Gold potatoes,sliced 1/4″ thick (or small fingerlings, sliced in half lengthwise)

Heat vegetable oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper and place skin side down in to the pan. Cook until golden brown without turning, about 8–10 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate.

To the same pot, add onion, garlic, and ginger to pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is very soft and golden brown, about 8–10 minutes.

Add tomato paste, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, coriander, cayenne and cook, stirring often, until tomato paste is beginning to darken, about 4 minutes.

Add chicken pieces, chicken broth, tomato purée, and cream to pot. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until chicken is almost falling off the bone and liquid is slightly thickened, about 1 1/2 hours. If using bone-in chicken, remove chicken to a plate and carefully remove chicken from the bone and discard skin and bones. Cut or pull chicken into bite-sized pieces. Return chicken pieces to the pot.

Add potatoes to the pot and cook, partially covered, until potatoes are fork-tender and sauce is thickened, 30-45 minutes. *Check and stir every so often to ensure the sauce hasn’t thickened to much and potatoes aren’t sticking to the bottom of the pot. If sauce is too thick, thin with a bit more chicken stock.

To serve, spoon stew into a shallow bowl and place a large dollop of yogurt on one side. Sprinkle with some fresh chopped mint, cilantro or parsley and serve with naan bread on the side. Alternately, spoon stew over some warm basmati rice.

Cauliflower Korma with Blackened Raisins

2 large heads cauliflower, broken into ?bite-size florets?Canola oil? 2
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste?
2 large yellow onions,?thinly sliced?
6 garlic cloves, grated?
1 (2 1/2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated?
2 teaspoons garam masala?
1 teaspoon freshly ground ?black pepper?
Pinch of ground cardamom?
Pinch of cayenne pepper?
1 cup ground almonds?
2 tablespoons honey?
2 cups plain whole-milk Greek yogurt?
3/4 cup whole milk?
1/2 cup raisins?
1/2 cup sliced almonds?

Heat oven to 350°F. Toss cauliflower with 1/4 cup oil and ?1 teaspoon salt. Arrange in a single layer on 2 aluminum foil–lined rimmed baking sheets. Roast cauliflower until tender and browned, 30 to 40 minutes. ?

Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until softened and lightly caramelized, 12 to 15 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring often, until fragrant. Stir in garam masala, black pepper, cardamom, and cayenne. Add ground almonds, honey, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Cook, stirring, until almonds cling to onions, about 3 minutes. Stir in yogurt and reduce heat to low. Simmer until sauce is thickened and a rich golden color, about 10 minutes. Add milk and cook, stirring, until the sauce is smooth and coats the back of a spoon. Season to taste with salt and remove from heat. ?Heat oven to 350°F. Toss cauliflower with 1/4 cup oil and ?1 teaspoon salt. Arrange in a single layer on 2 aluminum foil–lined rimmed baking sheets. Roast cauliflower until tender and browned, 30 to 40 minutes. ?

Heat a small frying pan over medium. Add raisins and sliced almonds; cook, shaking pan to keep raisins and almonds moving, until raisins start to blacken and puff up and almonds are golden brown, about 2 minutes.?

Spoon sauce onto a platter. Top with cauliflower, and sprinkle with raisins and almonds.?

Cauliflower, Potato, and Pea Curry

1/4 cup cooking oil
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon dried red-pepper flakes
1 medium head cauliflower (about 1 pound), cut into large florets (about 4 cups)
1 1/2 pounds boiling potatoes (about 4), peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes in thick puree
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup frozen petite peas

In a large deep frying pan, heat the oil over moderate heat. Add the coriander, cumin, turmeric, and red-pepper flakes and stir. Add the cauliflower and potatoes and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables start to soften, about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, 1/4 cup of the cilantro, the water, and the salt. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, and cook, covered, until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in the peas and the remaining 1/4 cup cilantro and cook, covered, until the peas are tender, about 2 minutes longer.

Variation: If you like, you can add three tablespoons dried unsweetened coconut to the curry. Put it in at the same time as the peas.

Cauliflower (or Anything) Curry

1 onion, chopped
3 small plum tomatoes
3 large garlic cloves
One 2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 head of cauliflower (1 1/2 pounds), cut into florets
1 long Indian green chile or Thai bird chile, sliced, plus more for serving
Kosher salt
Pepper
Steamed basmati rice, plain yogurt, and lime pickle, for serving

In a food processor, pulse the onion, tomatoes, garlic, and ginger until a paste forms. In a large, deep skillet, heat the oil. Add the onion paste, and cook over moderately high heat,
stirring often, until the paste is thickened, about 10 minutes.

Add the garam masala and turmeric, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the cauliflower, chile, and 2 cups of water. Season generously with salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over moderately low heat until the cauliflower is just tender, about 10 minutes. Serve with rice, yogurt, lime pickle, and sliced chiles.

Note: swap in green beans, eggplant, carrots, potatoes or a mix for the cauliflower

One-Pot Chicken and Rice

1/4 cup ghee (or use unsalted butter)
1 large yellow onion, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
6 green cardamom pods, crushed
3 whole star anise
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric powder
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
2 1/4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 1/2 cups basmati rice
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup sliced raw almonds, toasted
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves

In a medium saucepan with a lid, melt ghee over medium-high heat. Add onions, cardamom, star anise and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are soft and a very deep golden brown, about 15 minutes, lowering heat if necessary to keep from burning them. Add garlic and turmeric; cook and stir for 1 to 2 minutes, or until very fragrant. Add chicken and cook for 4 minutes, stirring to coat chicken with the onion mixture.

Add stock and remaining salt, increase the heat and bring to a boil. Add rice, stir and cover. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the rice has absorbed liquid, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 12 minutes. Remove lid and fluff rice with a fork.

Transfer chicken and rice to a bowl, taking care to remove and discard cardamom pods and star anise. Garnish with apricots, almonds and cilantro. Serve at once.

Dosa Potatoes

3 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 small dried hot red peppers
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
Pinch of asafetida
1 tablespoon grated ginger
6 to 8 curry leaves
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 small green chiles, finely chopped
1 1/2 pounds yellow-fleshed potatoes, such as Yukon Gold, boiled, peeled and cubed
1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro, leaves and tender stems

Put ghee in a wide skillet over medium heat. When oil is wavy, add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Wait for seeds to pop, about 1 minute, then add red peppers and onion. Cook, stirring until onions have softened, about 5 minutes. Season lightly with salt. Add turmeric, asafetida, ginger, curry leaves, garlic and green chile. Stir to coat and let sizzle for 1 minute.

Add potatoes and ½ cup water. Cook, stirring well to combine, until liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Mash potatoes a bit with the back of a wooden spoon. Season well with salt, add cilantro, then set aside at room temperature. (Potato filling may be prepared up to a day in advance.)

Samosa Potatoes and Peas

5 potatoes, cooked and mashed
1 onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 carrot, diced (optional)
1/2 lb peas
1 green hot pepper, cut into thin strips
1 (1-in) piece fresh ginger, grated
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
Salt
Black pepper

Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat and pour the onion and ginger.

Sauté for 2 minutes until the onion is soft, then add the garlic.

Sauté for a minute.

Add peas, hot pepper and carrot and cook on low heat for 5 minutes.

Finally, add the mashed potatoes and the other ingredients.

Mix well and cook over low heat, covered for 5 minutes.

Pressure Cooker Khichuri

4 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium red onion thinly sliced
3/4 cup red split lentils (masuur dal)
1/2 cup Basmati or kalajeera rice
1 tsp powdered cumin
1 tsp powdered coriander
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1/2 tsp red cayenne pepper powder
1 tsp salt or to taste
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 cups cauliflower florets
1 medium sized Yukon gold potato peeled and cubed
1/2 cup frozen green peas

For tempering
1 tbsp ghee or coconut oil
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp dried crushed red pepper (optional)
2 whole dried red chillies
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp chopped cilantro

Set the Instant Pot® on Sauté mode and heat the oil for about 1 minute, then add the onion and sauté until they turn golden, about 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the lentils, rice, cumin, coriander, ginger, cayenne pepper powder, salt, and turmeric. Add the cauliflower, potato, and 4 cups of water and stir well.

Press Cancel to turn off Sauté mode, close the lid, and set the Instant Pot® on Manual Low Pressure mode for 4 minutes.
When cooking time is complete, allow for Natural Pressure Release for 10 to 15 minutes, then use Quick Release for any residual pressure.

Once pressure is released, open pot and stir rice mixture well. Set the Instant Pot® to Sauté mode and stir in the green peas and cook for 1 minute.

To finish, heat the ghee or coconut oil in a small pan, add the cumin seeds, crushed red pepper, if using, and whole dried red chilies and cook until the mixture crackles and is fragrant, being careful not to burn the crushed red pepper. Pour the fragrant mixture over the khichuri and gently stir. Sprinkle on the lime juice and garnish with cilantro before serving.

Coconut Curry with Chickpeas and Pumpkin

3 tablespoons neutral oil, such as sunflower or canola
1 large onion, chopped
2 jalapeños, seeded or not, thinly sliced
1 bay leaf
1 knob ginger (about 1 inch), minced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, rinsed
1 (13.5-ounce) can coconut milk (do not use light coconut milk)
1 (13.5-ounce) can pumpkin purée
1 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt, more as needed
3/4 cup chopped cilantro, more for serving
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
Cooked rice or couscous, for serving (optional)

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in onion, jalapeño and bay leaf. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is golden on the edges, about 8 minutes.

Add ginger and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in garam masala, cumin and turmeric; cook for an additional 30 seconds.

Stir in chickpeas, coconut milk, pumpkin, ½ cup water and 1 ½ teaspoons salt. Bring to a simmer and continue to simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, to let the flavors meld. (Add more water if it starts to look too thick.) Stir in cilantro and lime juice to taste. Taste and add more salt if necessary.

Serve over rice or couscous if you like, and top with more cilantro and lime wedges on the side.

Garlic-Ginger Chicken Breasts with Mint and Cilantro

8 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint leaves, plus more for garnish
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon amchur (dry mango powder), optional
1/2 teaspoon red chile powder, like ground cayenne
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Make the marinade: Add the garlic, ginger, mint, cilantro, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons oil to a large resealable bag. Seal the bag and massage to combine the ingredients into a paste. Add the coriander, turmeric, amchur (if using), red chile powder and salt, and seal the bag. Shake or massage to combine.

Place the chicken breasts in the marinade and seal the bag tightly. Use your hands to gently massage the marinade onto the chicken breasts until each breast is coated. Refrigerate at least 2 hours and up to overnight.

Warm a large lidded skillet over medium-high heat. Once the pan is quite hot, add the oil, swirling the pan to coat the entire surface. Reduce the heat to medium, remove the chicken from the marinade and shake gently to remove any excess marinade. Add it to the pan. Working in batches if necessary, cook the breasts, undisturbed, until lightly golden underneath, 1 to 2 minutes, then flip them and cook until lightly golden on the second side, 1 to 2 minutes.

Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook the chicken for 10 minutes (no peeking!). Turn off the heat (if you have an electric stove, take the pan off the heat) and let the chicken sit, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the breasts. Don’t lift the lid, or you’ll release the hot steam that finishes cooking the chicken.

Check to make sure the breasts are cooked through: There shouldn’t be any pink in the middle. If you have a meat thermometer, the chicken should register at least 165 degrees. Place the chicken on a cutting board, and slice each breast into strips. Garnish with mint and cilantro.

Indian-Seasoned Baked Potatoes

1 pound small new potatoes or baby red potatoes
Kosher salt
3/4 cup sour cream
4 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
2 small Indian green chiles or Serrano chiles, finely chopped
2 teaspoons chaat masala
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro stems and leaves, for garnish

Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until they are easily pierced with a fork. Let the potatoes cool until they can be handled.
Without cutting all the way through to the bottom, slice each potato lengthwise and crosswise into four sections. Use your hands to push down and pull apart the four sections like a blooming flower. Sprinkle a pinch of salt on top of each potato, followed by a dollop of sour cream.

Evenly divide the ginger, onion, green chiles, and chaat masala among the potatoes. Make it rain with chopped cilantro and serve.

Curried Chicken Salad with Mango Chutney

3/4 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
3/4 cup mango chutney
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons mild curry powder
1 small rotisserie chicken—meat shredded, skin and bones discarded (4 cups)
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1 cup baby arugula leaves 4 brioche rolls or other rolls, split (optional, for sandwiches)

In a food processor, pulse the yogurt, chutney, lime juice and curry until blended but not completely smooth. Scrape the mixture into a medium bowl, add the shredded chicken, scallions and cilantro and toss well. Season with salt and pepper. Lay the arugula on the rolls, spoon the pulled chicken salad on top and serve.

Khichuri

1/2 cup mung dal (skinned and split mung beans)
1/2 cup Basmati rice
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
2 tejpatta (Sold in Indian grocery stores as “Indian bay leaf”)
6 cups water
1 Russet potato, cubed into 1″ pieces
1/2 head of a large cauliflower, cut into small florets
1/2 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated coconut (could substitute with unsweetened dessicated coconut)
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
Zest and juice of 1 lime
Vegetable oil for sauteing
1-2 tablespoons Ghee (could be substituted with butter)
2 tomatoes, chopped into small pieces
1 teaspoon sugar

On medium heat, in a dry wok, add the mung dal and toast until it changes color to a light brown and becomes very aromatic. Keep stirring frequently while you toast the dal – don’t let it burn! Once the dal changes color, add 3 cups of water, add the bay leaves, bring it to a boil, cover with a lid and cook for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes, add the rice, one teaspoon of Kosher salt and another 3 cups of water, bring to a boil, cover with a lid and cook for another 10 minutes.

While the dal starts boiling, start sauteing your vegetables. In a large skillet, on medium heat, add about 1/4 cup of vegetable oil. When the oil starts shimmering, add the cumin seeds and ginger paste and saute for a few seconds. The ginger is going to splatter like crazy, so be careful! Add the potatoes, cauliflower, turmeric, cayenne and one teaspoon of Kosher salt and saute until the veggies are evenly browned on all sides. This should take about 20 minutes or so.

Once the rice has cooked for 10 minutes, add all the vegetables into the wok, scraping the skillet to get all the spices. Add the tomatoes, mix well, cover with a lid and continue cooking for another 10 minutes. Check frequently to make sure that there is enough water in the wok and the khichuri is not getting stuck at the bottom.

Meanwhile, in the same skillet, add another teaspoon of oil and saute the coconut until it gets browned at the edges and becomes very aromatic. Set aside.

After the vegetables have cooked in the wok for 10 minutes, check to see if they are done. At this point, both the rice and dal should be cooked through and about to turn mushy, and the tomatoes should have disintegrated. Add the sauteed coconut, raisins, peas, sugar, zest and juice of the lime. Mix well. I like my khichuri to have the consistency of risotto, so I let it cook with the lid off until the texture is just right. Taste for seasoning. Mix in the ghee just before serving. Enjoy immediately with your favorite vegetable fritters, papads and extra wedges of lime!

Khichuri (Stovetop or Pressure Cooker)

1/2 cup white rice
1/2-cup moong dal (split yellow mung bean)
Half of a small cauliflower, cut into about 10 florets (not so small that they will melt)
2 or 3 small potatoes, peeled and cut in half, or 1 medium potato cut into 4-6 pieces
1/3 cup of frozen peas
1 bay leaf
2 green cardamom
2-3 cloves
1 thin sticks of cinnamon
1 or 2 dry red chili (I often use green chili instead)
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon grated ginger
Ghee (clarified butter)
Turmeric and salt as needed

Dry roast the moong dal on medium flame till it starts to brown and you can smell its nutty aroma. (Other khichri recipes use a range of lentils that don’t involve this step.) Stop when about half the beans have become light brown in color, then set aside in a bowl with 2 cups of warm water in it.

Into a pan add a tablespoon of ghee (or mustard oil or vegetable oil) and heat on high or medium till the ghee looks hot.

Throw in the bay leaf. As it starts to brown, lower the flame to medium and add the cardamom pods, clove and cinnamon. Stir with a spoon. Then add the cumin seeds and the chilies. Once the cumin seeds start to sputter, throw in the grated ginger, and stir.

Now add the potato, carrots and cauliflower. Sprinkle some turmeric till veggies turn light yellow. Stir fry for a few minutes.

At this stage, add the dal with the water and salt to taste. Cover the pot and cook till water starts to boil.

Cook for 4 more minutes so that the dal, which takes longer to cook, starts to soften.

At this point, you can transfer everything to a pressure cooker, add the frozen peas, rice and one more cup of water and cook it using the rice setting. (If you’re using a stove top pressure cooker, wait for two whistles before you switch off of the stove.)

Or if not using a pressure cooker, add the rice and two more cups of water to the pot once the dal starts to soften. Cook with a lid on medium or low with occasional stirring to make sure rice and mung beans don’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Frozen peas will cook quickly, so add them 5-10 minutes after the rice. Add more water along the way if it starts to look too dry.

Consistency should be like that of a thick porridge, although some people like it drier.

Cook till rice, dal and vegetables look cooked, but not too mushy. Serve with a teaspoon of ghee on top, mango or lime pickle on the side.

This very well with papad or papadum, which are flat, round, tortilla shaped crispy snacks that are usually deep fried or roasted over the fire.

Curry Butter

1/4 pound (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice

Melt the 1 tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. When it bubbles and froths, add the shallot and cook for 2 minutes. Add the ginger and curry powder and cook for 1 minute more. Then add the lime juice, stir to combine, and remove from the heat. Set the mixture aside to cool to room temperature.

In a small bowl, mix the remaining stick of butter with the sautéed shallot, ginger, and curry. Mix well, then place the mixture in a jar and refrigerate

Quick Cilantro Chutney

1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon peeled, grated ginger
2 pieces Thai chile peppers, destemmed
3 teaspoons lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt

Untie the bunch of cilantro. Wash thoroughly. Pick the leaves and the top, delicate part of the stem. (Save the lower stems to use for soups and broths later.)

Combine the cilantro leaves and top stems, peppers, salt, lime juice, and ginger and blend until fine. Feel free to add a teaspoon or two of water to facilitate blending.

Store in a clean glass bottle in the refrigerator. This will last for 2 to 3 weeks.

Quick Tamarind Chutney

1/4 cup tamarind paste
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon corn starch

Mix all the ingredients except the cornstarch in a thick-bottomed pan. Turn the heat on to medium.

Meanwhile, in a separate small bowl, mix the cornstarch with 1 teaspoon water. Add this mixture to the chutney.

Once the chutney starts boiling, turn the heat off. Turning the heat off after the first boil will ensure that the cornstarch imparts a slight thickness to the chutney. (We do not want the chutney turning into a paste.)

Once the chutney cools down, store in the refrigerator in a clean glass bottle.

Serving Suggestion: Add 2 teaspoons chutney to a cup of crispy rice cereal. Mix a pinch of salt and red chile powder, a spoonful of diced red onions, and chopped cilantro for a quick snack. Or enjoy with aloo chaat.

Aloo Chaat

4 medium-sized Yukon Gold or russet potatoes
3 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chaat masala
1/2 teaspoon red chile powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 teaspoons cilantro chutney, for serving
3 teaspoons sweet tamarind chutney, for serving
1/2 cup plain yogurt, mixed well with a spoon
1/2 cup sev
3 teaspoons chopped cilantro, for garnish

Peel potatoes and cut them into pieces about 1/2″ wide and 1/2″ long. Place them in a microwaveable bowl and fill with water in such a way that all the potatoes are submerged in water. Microwave for 3 minutes.

Pour the potatoes carefully in a sieve and drain the water. After the potatoes have cooled down, wipe them dry on a kitchen towel or paper napkin.

Heat a cast-iron or any thick-bottomed skillet. Pour half the vegetable oil. Divide the potatoes into two batches to ensure that the pieces get heated in a single layer without crowding each other. Insert the potatoes in the cast-iron pan.

Sauté the potatoes and stir every 2 to 3 minutes to prevent them from sticking to the pan. The goal is for the potatoes to acquire a taut, golden-brown skin on all the surfaces. This takes about 15 to 18 minutes. Repeat the process with the next batch.

Put the roasted potatoes in a mixing bowl. Add salt, red chile powder, cumin powder, and chaat masala. Mix well. Add cilantro chutney and sweet tamarind chutney. Mix well.

Divide potatoes between two serving plates. Pour the yogurt on the potatoes. Layer sev on top and garnish with cilantro. Serve right away.

Note: Potatoes can also be oven roasted.