Kenyan Vegetable Curry
- Ready In:
- 1hr 10mins
- 2 large onions, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin seed
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds, preferably black
- 8 medium potatoes, quartered (scrubbed or peeled)
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
- 1 large garlic clove, minced and crushed
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon whole coriander seed, crushed
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1⁄8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 1⁄2 lb green beans, trimmed
- 1⁄2 small cauliflower, broken into florets
- 1 medium eggplant, cubed
- 1⁄2 lb fresh green peas, shelled
- 1 bunch spinach (or other leafy green, frozen or fresh)
- 1 1⁄2 cups chickpeas (cooked or canned, rinsed and drained)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, to taste (or more)
- Preliminaries: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Have available one 8-quart, heavy, ovenproof skillet or Dutch oven with a lid (or have aluminum foil available). If you cut recipe in half, a 6-quart pot will do.
- For the initial saute: In the skillet or Dutch oven, brown the onions in moderately hot oil along with the cumin and mustard seeds. Add the potato pieces (peeling is optional), and stir to coat each piece with the spices. Add the remaining spices and garlic and continue to stir for several minutes.
- Add the liquids: Thin the tomato paste with about ⅔ cup of water, then stir into the pot. Lower heat to medium. Add vegetables, one at a time, cooking for a minute or so between each addition, and put in the cooked chickpeas last.
- Bake the mixture: Cover with a lid or seal with foil and bake in preheated oven for about 45 minutes, checking after the first 20 minutes. The consistency should be rather thick, but add water if necessary to prevent burning. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
- Presentation: Serve over steamed rice or with Indian bread (such as naan).
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I made this recipe almost exactly as written. I did leave out the oil (cooking no fat) and only used a spray of olive oil. This may have affected the final taste. I was expecting an in-your-face, grab for the water, spicy curry and was surprised. At first I thought this very bland, then I decided that the flavour was subtle. I liked it. The potatoes were on the edge of underdone, I would cut them smaller, say into bite-size cubes. The portions are generous and filling for a main course. We really didn't need the rice I made as a side. I think I would also allow more than 20 minutes for prep, but maybe I'm just a bit slower than superblondieno2. I would make this again, and might even take it to a potluck. (I *won't* say anything about the assumptions of the newspaper writer. Maintain control, woman!)
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