I guess this is my attempt at a spring inspired meal. I know the peas are frozen but they’re somewhat local so that still counts, right? While the rest of the world seems to be enjoying asparagus and rhubarb, we’re up here still waiting for the snow to melt. But peas and potatoes are in the realm of spring things, so here’s hoping this post has a little something for everyone.
It feels pretty cliche to talk about the weather here but it plays such an important role this time of year. Patience is a virtue that I don’t possess and I’m always a little too eager to find spring vegetables come May. I stopped by a local vegetable stand this week in search of something other than potatoes or last years apples and I jumped at the chance to bring home a few greenhouse cucumbers. If you live in a northern climate, maybe you know what I’m talking about here? The nights are still chilly but the snow is slowly disappearing and soon the trails will be a muddy mess. There will be time to garden and to walk through the woods and to enjoy a meal outside. There will be time for all that, soon. I’m learning to take things as they come, one slow season at a time.
This potato curry might not scream spring but it’s rich and flavorful and the peas add the freshness I’ve been craving. It’s an ease into brighter days while practicing patience and waiting on that asparagus.
PEA + POTATO CURRY
A weeknight vegetarian meal that is easy to prepare and satisfying for every one. I often find the most crucial step when making soups and stews like this is to take the time to cook down the onions. I like to add in my spices once the onions have softened and cook it all down together. The spices get a little toasty and coated in oil and it smells incredible, you can then add in the garlic so it softens but doesn’t burn.
You could easily add in a green chili here, I just don’t buy them that often so I always reach for sambal oelek or harissa paste to add heat to dishes, but finely chopped green chili would work really well here. Add in just before the garlic.
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
1/2 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
3-4 tablespoon water
3 cloves garlic, finely grated with a micro plane
700g potatoes, peeled and chopped into wedges or cubes (about 3 cups)
1 398ml can full fat coconut milk
1 1/2 cups water or stock
1 cup mange tout peas (aka snow or sugar peas)
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 tablespoon sambal oelek (or your favorite hot sauce, to taste)
2 green onions, thinly sliced
Squeeze of fresh lime or lemon juice
1 + 1/2 cups basmati rice
2 + 1/4 cup water
Pinch fine sea salt
Heat coconut oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add in the onions and stir to coat. Sweat out the onions until soft, about 5 minutes stirring often to prevent burning. Add in the spices and salt and continue cooking, adding splashes of water as needed if things get dry. Cook onions and spices together for 5-10 minutes. Add in the garlic and stir to coat, then add in the potatoes and stir again.
Add the coconut milk and water and bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until potatoes have softened. Simmer uncovered for another 10 minutes or until thickened. Add in the mange tout peas and simmer for 5 minutes, then add in the frozen peas and simmer for a few minutes. Stir in black pepper and chili paste/hot sauce if using. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
Serve with sliced green onions, fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime juice.
While the curry is simmering make the basmati rice. Place rice in a small sauce pot with a pinch of salt. Boil a kettle of water and measure out 2 1/4 cups boiling water then pour it over the rice. Bring to simmer, then cover and reduce to a minimum for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork.
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