Wellington’s been pretty cold recently. Not snowing, but then, it’s only officially been winter for nine days. However, it has been so cold and wet that my hands went an odd shade of purple; after walking 15 minutes to university I had to wring water out of my hair with paper towels in the girls’ bathroom; and every post in my facebook newsfeed had the word cold at least twice. In cold weather, I not only crave hot soups, but gain an amazing fondness for carbs. Piles of steaming roasted beetroots, kumera (sweet potato), yams and potatoes are a must. So are spiced potatoes.
To be fair, this isn’t exclusively a winter dish. It is lovely served cold, and would go well at any barbeque, picnic, or dinner on the verandah. It would also be nice inside a wrap, with fresh vegetables.
Six medium potatoes, suitable for boiling
Two medium onions
One small handful of curry leaves
One teaspoon cumin seeds
One teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
Half a teaspoon of ground cumin
Half a teaspoon of salt
Half a teaspoon of paprika
Half a teaspoon of garam masala
Cut the potatoes into slices approximately one centimetre thick. Boil until cooked but still firm. While the potatoes are cooking, slice the onions into fine half rings, and fry in a small amount of oil or ghee. When the onions are almost translucent, add the curry leaves, cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Fry until the mustard seeds begin to pop. Add the salt, paprika, and ground cumin and fry for a moment more, then add the drained potatoes.
Fry together for about five minutes, until the potatoes are crisping and the flavours are mixed. In the final minute add the garam masala.
Serve with an indian chutney, or plain yoghurt. As this is a dry curry, it is necessary to serve with a wet component. I think this would also be lovely with fresh coriander, and with feta cheese crumbled and added at the last minute, and then maybe served with a flatbread.
Serves 2-3 for a main, dependent on portion size, or 4 for a side dish. It can be served hot or cold.