Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Carrot and Sweet Potato Curry

An unintentional and not all together unwelcome side effect of this year's food challenge, is that when I'm not thinking about pig I'm thinking a lot more about vegetables.  This is possibly down to the amount of time I am spending on Leeds Kirkgate market.  You can find me most Saturday mornings wandering around Butchers Row mulling over the porky possibilities.  Afterwards, meat in hand,  I like to fill my shopping bags with as much fruit and veg as I can carry home*.

I still find myself buying additional veg in the supermarket.  A couple of weeks ago I went green veg mad and bought pak choi, kale and spinach.  I must have been feeling run down and lacking in iron.  We managed to plough our way through the greens but that was at the expense of the carrots I had already bought on the market.

My initial thought, whenever I have any leftover vegetables, is soup.  However this wasn't a handful of carrots left over from a meal, this was a full bag of carrots whose potential had never been met.  I felt that it was only fitting to make them the star of a meal but I couldn't get soup out of my head.  It was the classic Carrot and Coriander that was haunting me.  I just couldn't shift the idea of the sweet earthy and fragrant dish from my mind.  I then realised that it wouldn't take much to convert the ingredients for a good soup into a great curry.

The base of the curry was onion, garlic and ginger, fried in ghee with mustard seeds, curry leaves, cumin, coriander, fresh chilies and turmeric.  Once the onion had softened and the spices were toasted I added the carrot, sweet potato and a little red pepper, along with just enough stock to cover the veg.  By the time the carrots were tender the sweet potatoes had broken down into the stock to thicken the sauce.  All that was left to do was to stir in some fresh coriander and serve with naan bread.  I doubt that this is in any way authentic, but the flavour combination is so good it shouldn't be reserved just for soup.

*I'm going to start cycling to the market so the limit to my spend will be the capacity of my rucksack!

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