June 26, 2007

Capsicum Curry

On some days, I don't plan at all. On others, I plan and plan no end (and end up leaving the lunch box at home!) This dish, however, is the result of no planning at all. Amchi cuisine has a capsicum dish called Kayaras and that is what I wanted to make one morning when I had loads of capsicum in the fridge. But I was too lazy to pick up the Rasachandrika from the shelf and refer to it. At times like these, I remember what Amma always says, "When nice ingredients go into a dish and the intentions are good and loving, it can never taste bad." The first time I heard this was when I tried to make chikki. The recipe called for caramelized sugar instead of the jaggery syrup that is usually made and my chikki didn't turn out like anything I'd expected. I was about 10 at the time.

Now, I have a reasonably decent sense of combinations: what goes well with what... what flavours ingredients will impart to a dish. And this helps me experiment. So, I went beyond aloo capsicum and paneer/soya capsicum to create this dish.


1/4 kilo Green Capsicum, chopped
1 Onion, sliced
2 tbsp Peanuts
1 tsp Sesame seeds
2 tsp Oil
2 Red Chillies
1 tsp Tamarind Paste
1 tbsp Coconut
1 tsp Mustard Seeds
1/4 tsp Asafoetida
1 tsp Cumin Seeds
Salt to Taste

In a small kadhai, heat 1 tsp of oil. Add the sesame seeds, coconut, chillies, and peanuts and roast for a few minutes. Transfer this to a mixer jar and grind it to a paste along with a little salt and the tamarind paste.

In a larger kadhai, heat the other teaspoon of oil. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and asafoetida. When the seeds splutter, add the onions and fry for a minute or so. Add the paste and fry for another minute. Add the chopped capsicum, a little water and some salt if needed. Cover and cook until the capsicum is done. I like my capsicum crunchy and don't cook it for too long.

I packed this along with rotis for lunch and I found that it actually tasted nice. My colleagues told me it would be very heavy because of the sesame, peanuts and coconut. I didn't find it too heavy, but it wasn't the lightest dish I'd made or anything.


Seema said...

Raaga, loved the base of this capsicum curry. Coconut and groundnut together sounds very delicious. Thanx for the recipe.

Lata said...

I posted similar dish on my site couple of days. We make this little watery.

trupti said...

With all those spices and flavors in there, this just has to be good!


thanks for the tag! :)

DEEPA said...

i have never used sesame seeds and peanuts together in a curry ....Will surely try ..Something different

Roopa said...

i love this curry we make the same masala but a dry base fry. delicious one.

Raaga said...

@Seema: Welcome back!!

@Lata: Unable to stay on your page for longer than 30 seconds. Some technical problem. Welcome to my blog :-)

@Trupti: Anytime anytime. And sometimes dishes like these satisfy those spice cravings :-)

@Deepa:I'd not heard of gulab jamun cake either... and I will try that too!!!

@Roopa: I should try that too. Our rotis are soft but dry(no oil in dough, no oil while toasting), so I make the side dish slightly liquidy :-)

ushaprashanth said...

This curry looks lovely.. I will just add some capsicum in sambar,fried rice etc ..but capsicum as a main ingredient think it will taste delicious with all these spices..

Raaga said...

@Usha: Happens to all of us. I will soon post a recipe for capsicum rice which has become a staple in my house. Earlier, it was added with other things and never made into a dish by itself!

Nupur said...

Your Amma's words are so sweet and so wise! What a nice way to graciously acknowledge the efforts of a budding cook.

Raaga said...

@Nupur: I owe almost 95% of my interest and ability to cook to her :-) For years, she even patiently cleaned after me... especially when I'd first started baking at the age of 10.