Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Peas 'n Carrots Masala

I will not pretend that I know anything about Indian food, aside from the fact that I like it and cannot buy it here. I also didn't know the difference between curry powder and garam masala but I decided that I wanted to try a masala recipe so I watched this video and made my own.


Garam Masala

  • 2 T. cumin seed (semillas de comino)
  • 2 T. coriander seed (semillas de cilantro)
  • 2 T. black peppercorns (grandos de pimienta negra)
  • 1 T. cardamom pods (cardamomo)
  • 1 cinnamon stick (canela en rama)
  • 4 bay leaves (hoja de laurel)
  • 1 t. whole cloves (clavos)
Toast all spices except bay leaves in a pan over medium heat - tossing continuously -  for about 3 minutes. Let cool. Grind all ingredients together (including bay leaves).

My notes: All ingredients are available at dieteticas in Rosario, but I used already ground cinnamon (1/2 teaspoon). I didn't want to aromatize my coffee grinder so I used an emulsion blender with good enough results - I had to sift out some seed shells that wouldn't grind. The scent of garam masala is way different than curry powder (which is available at Safyta and other spots around town).

Forrest and Jenny's Masala
adapted from En Samayal Pakkam

  • 2 1/2 cups fresh shelled peas and carrots, diced
  • 1 small or medium onion
  • 1" ginger (jengibre)
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 t. fennel seeds (hinojo)
  • 1/2 t. cumin (comino)
  • 1/4 t. coriander seeds (cilantro)
  • handful of fresh cilantro leaves (I didn't have any)
  • 2 or 3 mint leaves
  • 1 green chili (or substitute cayenne pepper to taste - I used 1/4 teaspoon)
  • 2 T. oil (I used sunflower)
  • 1 big tomato, finely chopped 
  • 1/2 t. turmeric (cúrcuma)
  • 1/4 t. chili powder
  • 1/2 t. garam masala
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream or plain yogurt

Steam peas and carrots with some salt until soft - to your desired tenderness (5 minutes for me), set aside. Blend together everything from onion to green chili into a paste - I used an emersion blender but it left some chunks so I would suggest a food processor. Fry paste in oil 'until the raw smell goes away' - about 5 minutes. The recipe didn't list amount or type of oil so I used 2 T. sunflower oil.

 

Then add chopped tomatoes and turmeric, chili powder and garam masala. Saute for 5 minutes until the tomatoes are mushed up and oil spots appear on top.


Add water (more if needed) and bring to a boil. Add vegetables and bring to a boil. Taste for seasoning, add salt and other spices to taste. Give the gravy a minute to cook down a bit, then remove from heat and stir in cream.


I served over white rice. Yes, that's my impatient shadow looming over this dish. Clearly, I was very hungry. Between the ginger, pepper, cayenne, and chili powder it's a spicy dish but the level of heat can be easily dialed up or down according to your tastes.

2 comments:

Katie said...

This dish looks very tasty, and I actually have almost all the spices in my kitchen cabinet. The only problem is that I have absolutely nothing to grind them with. I think I need to buy a spice grinder... I have seen curry powder for sale here but never garam masala. Good for you for trying something completely different!

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