We have lots of delicious potatoes, so when my daughter came over, we cooked this curry. It uses coconut milk along with spices to make a fragrant curry. We served this with a salad of grated beetroot, flavoured with toasted cumin, and dressed with lemon juice and salt.
- 3 tbsp rapeseed oil, or other vegetable oil
- 1 tsp whole black mustard seeds
- 1 tsp yellow split peas
- 2 whole dried birds-eye chillies
- 10 basil leaves
- 1/2 can chopped tomatoes, or a couple of medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- a small pinch of cayenne
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 400g potatoes (we used charlotte) and 100g carrots (we used yellow carrots) – cut into 2cm large chunks
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 can coconut milk
- Chopped coriander leaves
- In a medium saucepan, heat up the oil and then add the mustard seeds, yellow split peas and chillies. After a minute or so, they’ll start popping. Add the onions and basil leaves as soon as this happens. Turn the heat down a bit and cook until the onion has softened.
- Add the coriander, cayenne, tomatoes and garam masala, and stir to mix. Add the potatoes and carrots along with around 250ml water and the salt, bring to the boil and then simmer on a low heat for 15+ minutes
- When the potatoes are cooked, add the coconut milk and fresh coriander leaves, and heat through, stirring.
- Serve with other dishes, for example a salad, or dal, or a kale dish.
There is a tale in here, as to how I had a good marrow. Susannah had four ailing wee plants, she said they were squash plants, could she plant them in the open in my garden. I was a bit doubtful, I have never had much success with growing curcurbits in the open in South Uist. The plants weren’t great either.
I planted out the best three, and one died. Now, in September, when the gales are beginning, they are flowering, and they appear to be courgette plants. I have a few tiny courgettes. I left the first one to get big, thinking it was a squash plant, and I ended up with a small marrow, weighing about 1 kilo. Marrows are just big courgettes.
So I made this stew.
- 1 small marrow, or 1kg of large courgettes
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 sprig of rosemary
- 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
- 2 onions, finely sliced
- 1/2 tsp red chili powder
- 1 small fennel bulb, sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
- 50ml dry sherry or dry white wine
- 1 can chopped tomatoes, or 500g of tomatoes peeled and chopped
- 1 tbsp wine vinegar
- Halve the marrow lengthways, and remove any seeds. Chop into chunks, arrange in a colander on a plate and salt it so that excess moisture is removed
- Heat the olive oil over a medium heat, and add the rosemary and fennel, frying this for a couple of minutes
- Add the onions, chilli and fennel, and gently fry for around 10 minutes
- Add the garlic, and continue to cook for another couple of minutes.
- Drain the water off the marrow, and add to the pan with a good grating of pepper, and cook, stirring regularly for another ten minutes. I usually read a book and stir after every couple of pages.
- Add the sherry or wine, and stir to mix all the juices together, and let this simmer down and reduce before adding the chopped tomatoes and wine vinegar. Bring to a simmer and cook at a very low temperature for around half an hour.
- Adjust the seasoning, and then serve garnished with oregano and rosemary. It might need a bit of salt, and it works well to let it sit and develop.
This can be customised. Try adding a tin of beans with the chopped tomatoes, or some capers. Some waxy potatoes, cut into cubes works well. I have reheated it with a layer of sliced potatoes on top, baked as a pie.
Yesterday evening, I served it with a grilled pork chop, pitta bread and goat’s cheese.
My potatoes are getting harvested, and I am trying out potato recipes. The first lot that I lifted were Arran Pilot, with white flesh that mashes very well. I made this from a recipe in Elizabeth David’s ‘Italian Food’. I also used some local free-range eggs.
- 1 Kg of potatoes that mash well
- 100g Gruyere or Emmental cheese, sliced
- 75g cooked ham or Italian sausage (I used Fonteluna sausage from Valvona and Crolla), sliced
- 2 eggs, boiled for around 7 minutes and peeled
- 3 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 75g butter
- 4 tbsp milk
- salt, pepper and nutmeg, to taste
- Peel and boil the potatoes until cooked, around 16 minutes. Mash them with about 40g butter and the milk, and put them through a mouli or potato ricer to make a very soft smooth mash. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
- Grease a dish with butter (I used a small lasagne dish) and then coat the bottom and sides with 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
- Put half the mashed potatoes in the bottom of the dish, then add the cheese, ham and chopped boiled eggs in a layer. Cover this with the rest of the mashed potato. Sprinkle the rest of the breadcrumbs over the top and dot with butter.
- Cook the pie in a hot oven (around 200C) for 30 to 40 minutes until the top is golden.
I served this with shredded kale. It is good with any green vegetable, or with a green salad.