Bandgobhi alu subji (cabbage, carrots, and potato cooked in Indian spices)
Toby, Jake, and I started a gloriously warm and sunny California day off with banana and blueberry pancakes for breakfast, followed by a trip to the park so our son Jake could try out his new bike. Spider Man helmet in place, off he went, zooming along the pavement, teetering back and forth on his training wheels. After a few goes around the park, Toby took the training wheels off the bike (deep breath), and bam: Jake was rockin’ and rollin’ along the path, with his proud parents running behind yelling, “GO JAKE!!! WHOOO HOOO!” Other parents nodding and smiling in appreciation of our lovely moment together. I simply cannot believe how fast kids grow up. One moment, they’re taking their first wobbly steps, walking around the living room like a mummy, then they’ve singing all the lyrics to Beatles songs, writing their name, skateboarding, and riding a bike. My baby’s growin’ up! LIfe is beautiful.
I have no idea how to smoothly transition from our lovely morning at the park to this recipe, apart from it flowed as easily as Jake riding his bike for the first time. Today’s dish was determined by what was hanging around the pantry. I rustled up this recipe from a bag of Yukon Gold potatoes, some cabbage and carrot from the fridge, and my treasure trove in Indian spices. The spice mix gently stirred in at the end of cooking gives the dish a wonderful sweetness.
Bandgobhi alu subji
3 medium carrots, cubed
1/2 tsp chili powder
3 cardamom pods
5 tbs ghee (Indian clarified butter) or vegetable oil
6-8 small Yukon gold potatoes or 4 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 tbs grated ginger
tsp ground turmeric
2 small tomatoes
1 tsp sea salt
tsp organic sugar (optional)
1/4 cup filtered water
1. Grind the cloves, cinnamon, and cardamom pods with a mortar and pestle into a fine powder and set aside.
2. Using a nonstick pan, heat 4 tablespoons of the ghee and fry the potatoes for 6-8 minutes or until the potatoes are golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and lay onto a plate lined with paper towel.
3. Add the remaining ghee, stir in the chili, ginger, turmeric and fry for 2 minutes. Add the carrots, cooking for 2 minutes, then the cabbage, frying for 5 minutes. Add the potatoes, tomatoes, sugar, and water. Stir, lower the heat, and simmer until for 2 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Sprinkle with the spice mixture and mix gently. Garnish with cilantro and serve.