Aloo mirch sabzi (literally, “potato pepper dish”; for whatever reason, the word that is transliterated “sabzi” seems to be pronounced more like “subji”) is another of the simple home-cooked Indian dishes that D and I make, following D’s mother. Actually, before this week it had been some time since we’d made this one. We ended up doing things a bit differently than we used to, but it worked out quite well. Here’s the deal:
- One large onion, chopped
- 4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
- Ginger the size of your thumb or a little bigger, chopped
- 4-5 medium potatoes, cut into pieces of any convenient shape; we did slices about 1/4 inch thick
- 1-2 green bell peppers, cut into chunks
- 4-5 medium tomatoes, chopped
- a fistful of cilantro, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon turmeric, 1 tablespoon cumin seeds, and salt and red pepper to taste
- As with rajma and chole, sizzle some cumin seeds in oil until they’re lightly toasted, then add the onion, garlic and ginger. Saute until the onion is translucent.
- Add the turmeric, salt, pepper, and all the vegetables except the bell pepper, and mix well.
- Cook covered over medium-low heat, checking periodically to make sure it’s not sticking to the bottom. (Add a little water if necessary.) The tomatoes should break down completely, and the potato should be approaching the desired texture (which can be anywhere from “just soft enough to eat” to “nearly falling apart,” depending on your taste). Then add the bell pepper, and cook until it’s soft. Uncover and dry it out a bit if it’s still runny or liquidy.
- Serve with bread; naan and roti both work fine.