A really versatile curry dish – you can add chicken or paneer, or keep it to just veggies. Serves 3 people.
For the curry paste:
- In a small blender or pestle & mortar, grind up 2 teaspoons each of coriander seed, cumin, turmeric and garam masala, and the seeds from 6 cardamom pods (or around a third of the teaspoon of ground cardamom).
- Add 2 large cloves of garlic and a thumb-sized piece of ginger – chop finely or crush.
- Add a handful of cashew nuts and a tablespoon of oil and blend of smash until a smooth paste forms.
- If needed, add extra oil or water to form the paste.
- A note on the spices: if you are missing one or two of them, don’t worry. The only really important one is the garam masala. It’s easier if the spices are already ground, but if you only have whole pods/seeds it’s fine so long as you have a pestle & mortar or some kind of small blender.
To prep the vegetables:
- Dice an onion.
- Cut whatever veggies you’re using into a bite-sized pieces. Suitable vegetables include aubergine, cauliflower, peppers, sweet potatoes, carrots, broccoli, green beans, peas, mushrooms or even canned stuff like chickpeas or baby corn. The following vegetables are NOT suitable: tomatoes, courgettes, cabbage, fennel, celery, leek. I used 1 aubergine, half a cauliflower and about 150g green beans.
- If using aubergine, pre-bake in an oven (180 degrees) with oil and salt for about 20 mins until browned and soft.
To combine the curry:
- Gently fry off the spice paste with a tablespoon of oil for about 3 mins until the spices turn a shade darker.
- Add the diced onions and fry for another few minutes until they start to turn translucent.
- Add a can of coconut milk and rinse out the can with a little water – add to the pan as well.
- Bring to a gentle boil and keep stirring to combine the paste with the liquid.
- Add your veggies – sweet potatoes and carrots take the longest to cook so add these for 10 mins first. Things like cauliflower, broccoli and green beans take less time to cook so add them later.
- Bring to a gentle bubble and put a lid on until the veggies are cooked (you can stick a knife in easily).
- Add another handful of cashew nuts for extra crunch.
- At the end, taste and season with salt (at least half a teaspoon), lemon juice (I used half a lemon) and fresh coriander leaves.
- If you’re using dairy, some cream or natural yoghurt also works well stirred in at the end.
Don’t forget to cook some rice while you’re doing the last part of the curry! 😉