This is as simple as a curry can get! If you have a bag of frozen peas, carrots and a few spices, then you are in luck. However, if you have time, freshly toasted and ground spices will lift the curry to a new level. If not, use store-bought ground spices and it will still taste good.
Toast the seeds in a dry fry pan for a minute or so or until you can see them dancing in the pan. Be careful as not to burn them. Take off heat and grind them in a small coffee grinder or mortar and pestle if you are doing a tablespoon. I prefer to grind them a bit coarser in texture. As I cook curries almost daily I make small quantities of spices to last me for a week or so. Curries are quite forgiving, so even if you do not have all the ingredients like curry leaves or pandan leaf you can still make a good curry. Nor will by adding a bit more onions or even less will ruin the curry. The measurements are there as a guide. A good cook will be able to improvise and make do with what he or she has available.
If you feel the curry is too thick add more water or more milk. For a diabetic friendly curry, cook in water and add some almond milk at the end of cooking You can use fresh peas too but you might need to cook the curry a bit longer.
If you prefer a milder curry use less chilies or none at all. I prefer it spicy, that’s me! Each to their own, I guess. So let’s get cooking, shall we!
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
2 tablespoon olive oil or vegetable oil
100 g or 1medium onion thinly sliced
3 cloves or 1tbsp garlic crushed
1 tsp freshly grated ginger
2 sprigs curry leaves thinly sliced
2x5cm pandan leaf
1 tbsp coarsely ground fennel seeds (preferably freshly toasted and ground)
1 tsp ground cumin seeds (preferably freshly toasted and ground)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/4 cup coconut milk powder mixed with 1 and 1/2 cups of hot water
85g or 1 medium carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
300 grams frozen peas
2 fresh green chillies sliced in half or Thai bird’s eye green chillies sliced (optional)
Add the oil, onions, ginger, garlic, curry leaves and pandan leaf in a medium sized pan and cook until lightly browned and fragrant (about 5 minutes or so on moderate heat whilst stirring)
Add the fennel, cumin, turmeric and salt, give it a quick stir for a minute or so then, add the coconut milk, chillies and carrots, cover and cook for about 5 minutes or until the carrots are cooked
Give the frozen peas a quick rinse under the tap and add them to the curry. Mix in well. Cover and cook for another 5 minutes or until the peas are cooked.
Adjust seasoning, and take off heat.
Serve with your choice of rice, rotis or bread.
If you cook the recipe please share it by tagging @nattulicious on Instagram. Please leave a comment too if you like the recipe, I would love to hear from you.
Words & Photos by Aishath Nashida (Natty)