Sunday, July 24, 2011

Indian-style Vegetable Curry

This is a light vegetable curry cooked with mustard seeds, tamarind and a touch of coconut milk. It's something my mum usually makes when I go back home to visit. I found this curry to be the perfect accompaniment for Roti Jala which I prepared for dinner today. But it's just as delicious with steamed rice or Indian breads. Here is the recipe:

Indian-style Vegetable Curry


500g chicken thighs or backbone (bone and skin on)
1-2 stalks curry leaves
3 cups water
1 1/2 tbsp dried tamarind pulp, soaked in 1/2 cup hot water and juice strained
2/3 cup coconut milk
Vegetable oil, for frying

Vegetables (cut into approx 1 inch cubes):
1 cup carrots
1 cup cauliflower
1 cup long beans
1 1/2 cup eggplant
2 potatoes
2 tomatoes

Blend finely:
2 medium onions
2 cloves garlic
1 inch ginger

Spice mix:
1 tbsp ground coriander
1/2 tbsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground fennel
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp mustard seeds
2-3 tbsp chilli powder (or ground chilli paste)

2-3 tsp salt (to taste)
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp chicken stock powder


  1. Heat up vegetable oil in a large pot and fry onions, garlic, ginger and the spice mix until fragrant (about 4-5 minutes).  Add chicken and sear all over in the onion mixture. Add curry leaves and water. Bring to a boil. Simmer for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked. Add the tamarind juice and bring to a boil again before adding seasoning to taste.
  2. Add carrots and potatoes, simmer for 8-10 minutes until almost cooked, then add the other vegetables. Bring to a boil and simmer until all vegetables are just cooked. Add coconut milk, bring to a brief gentle simmer, stirring occasionally (to avoid curdling). Check and adjust seasoning if necessary. Dish out into a bowl and serve with steamed rice, roti jala or your favourite Indian bread.