Keralan Curry


This delicious vegetarian curry is from Asha Gomez in an old issue of Food and Wine . I have made this over and over because it seems to be the perfect curry. Everyone I have made this for from the kids, grandparents and dyed-in-the-wool curry afficiandos loves this dish! It's not too spicy (add the chilies according to your palate) but full of flavor and although it's vegetarian, the satisfying textures from the potato, carrots and green beans make it hearty and lacking in nothing. It's brilliant color will bring a smile to your face, especially when the sauce mixes with some freshly steamed basmati rice. Gorgeous. You can link to the original recipe above if you happen to have 12 fresh curry leaves on hand, or trust my tweaks and go with this one. Either way, try it!

2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons finely julienned peeled fresh ginger
4 garlic cloves, minced or thinly sliced
2 bay leaves
2 serrano or 1 jalapeno chiles, finely chopped - if you have a very sensitive palate, halve this amount.
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
Coarsely ground black pepper
1 cup frozen pearl onions or 1 cup large diced yellow onions. (I have made it with both. The pearl onions add a nice little compact ingredients, but the yellow onions add the flavor and work just fine.)
1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/2 pound green beans, cut into 1/2-inch pieces - feel free to toss in some zucchini like I did or maybe some butternut in place of the carrots or potatoes too!
1/2 cup vegetable stock or broth
1 can unsweetened coconut milk

In a large saucepan, heat the canola oil. Add the ginger, garlic, curry leaves, chopped chiles, turmeric, 1 1/2 teaspoons of black pepper and 1/2 cup of the pearl onions. Season with salt and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are softened, about 8 minutes.

Add the potato cubes, diced carrots, green beans, vegetable stock and the remaining 1/2 cup of pearl onions and bring to a boil. Add the coconut milk and simmer, partially covered, until the vegetables are tender and the coconut milk is slightly reduced, about 30 minutes.

Season with salt and black pepper. Discard the bay leaves, if using, and serve.

Serves Four