Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Spicy Potatoes and Gingery Beans

I've been getting a lot of beans from the CSA. I've never really known what to do with fresh beans. The kinds that normally appear in Chinese cuisine, such as string beans and green beans, I'll blanche and then stir fry with garlic or shallots. I have to confess, I haven't been a very adventurous bean eater.

Well, the beans I got from the CSA were in broader pods. I couldn't quite see it in soup or stir fry, so I decided to take care of them along with my craving for some Indian food. Both the recipes I used tonight are from Madhur Jaffrey. The bean recipe comes from An Invitation to Indian Cooking, a classic, which I bought a couple of years ago at a used bookstore. It was the basis for my first attempts at Indian cuisine. I'm not terribly fond of ginger, but it's flavour was mellowed out by the addition of the other spices and the long cooking time.

The spicy potato recipe, which came from Jaffrey's A Taste of India (Moocow bought this for me at The Strand bookstore in NYC), is one that I've been wanting to try for a while. During graduation week my senior year at Cornell a bunch of my friends and I went up to Niagara Falls. We stayed in Buffalo with one of my friend's parents, and her mother was a superb cook. She made these wonderful spicy potatoes speckled with black mustard seeds, but she wouldn't share the recipe.

It's been a number of years since I had those potatoes, and my memory of their taste is a little fuzzy, but I don't think this recipe - tasty though it was - is quite it. But, now that I bought a bag of black mustard seeds at a local Indian grocery, I'm sure I'll be experimenting with different potato recipes.

1 comment:

greeeenwithenv said...

Haaaa! That trip to Aasha's home and Niagra remains one of my most treasured and vivic memories, thanks in part to that food! Such strong flavors. Even though I couldn't handle the hot spiciness very well, but I remember enjoying those potatoes.