Welcome to 2019, a month that already shows tons of promise in terms of home-cooked food. I’m so excited to get my stove fired up and dream up the kind of recipes that I know you and I will cherish for many years to come. To start things up, I wanted to make a coconut curry with seasonal red carrots and spices familiar to all of us. Serve this with unpolished rice and everyone’s going to love it, promise.
The base of this carrot and coconut curry is just asafoetida, mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves, so things are pretty flavourful in the pan when you splash in the coconut milk to disperse all that flavour. I use seasonal red carrots because of their sweetness, which contrasts beautifully against the tang of the curry. That spritz of lime juice at the end really brings everything together, so don’t ignore that.
The rice I used was an unpolished variety from ABC Farms. You can order their products from Pune if you know someone who is driving down to Mumbai, or you could order your products from ABC Farms via the Fruitique shop in Khar.
Winter Carrot and Coconut Curry
Yield 2 wholesome portions
This is a quick and delicious seasonal red carrot curry, which you can mop up with rotis, but I prefer to have this with some kind of unpolished rice for a more wholesome meal.
Ghee 1 tbsp
Vegetable oil 1 tbsp
Long Red Carrots 2 large or 3 medium-sized, cut into chunks that are all somewhat equal in shape
Asafoetida 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves 6-8
Cumin seeds 1 tsp
Black mustard seeds 1 tsp
Onion 1 medium, finely chopped
Garlic 4-5 cloves, minced
Green chillies 2, slit lengthwise and chopped roughly
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Chilli powder 1 tsp
Coconut milk 200ml
Salt and pepper
Water 1 cup
Lime juice 1 tsp
Coriander 1 tbsp, freshly chopped
Cooked unpolished rice to serve (I used rice from ABC Farms in Pune)
In a kadai or a wok, heat the ghee and the vegetable oil over medium-high heat till the oil is hot, but not smoking.
Working quickly, add the asafoetida, followed by the curry leaves, cumin seeds and black mustard seeds and let things sizzle for a few seconds. The mustard seeds should be popping by now. Take care to not let it burn. Tip in the onions and fry the onions, tossing it in the pan every few minutes until the edges of the onion start to turn golden. Add the garlic and continue to toss until the contents of the pan start to look nice and golden brown.
Add the green chillies and toss for a minute or two, followed by the carrots, the turmeric and chilli powders and about 1 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of black pepper.
Stir together very well to coat the carrots, still over medium-high heat and let the carrots cook for 5 minutes like this, stirring repeatedly.
Splash in the coconut milk and the water and bring everything up to a just-boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and let this cook for 25-30 minutes or until the carrots are fork-tender and the coconut milk gravy has reduced considerably. Squeeze over the lime juice and sprinkle the coriander. Taste for salt and lime juice and adjust if necessary. Serve with rice or rotis.