Fried Okra with the Pulkas

Friday night in our house is normally spice night and last week we had some left over okra and cauliflower that was given to us by roguehousewife’s mother (she is the best mother-in-law ever) and we really fancied doing something vegetarian.

So grab some Okra (my mum calls them Ladies Fingers), slice them into quarters, toss with gram flour and fry for around eight minutes until they are crispy. Then turn them onto a plate which has been covered in a selection of spices and salt. We used a mix of Garam Masala, chilli flakes, smoked paprika, cumin and mustard seeds and some thinly sliced dried mango. It was the perfect side dish to our curry.

Cauliflower curry has often been a dish that I’ve made in a variety of ways and it works very well with potato. The BBC has a good recipe here which can be adapted to taste. I don’t use milk or curry powder, I use a mix of yoghurt and a small grated chunk  of creamed coconut but a tin of coconut milk would also do. Instead of using curry powder try making your own spice mix up – crush in a pestle and mortar some coriander, cumin, mustard and fennel seeds. Then add some chilli flakes. To really add some depth I add a big pinch of my mums mix of garam masala and Masala tandoori powder.

Not the best looking photo of Cauliflower Curry but I assure you it tasted lovely.

Word of Warning - if you are too eager to serve up this dish before the caulifower is cooked it can be a little tough.Some people like their cauliflower crunchy  because it adds a certain texture to the dish.  However the dish goes down better if it well cooked and the potato and cauli start to mush together. The first time we had this curry we had jaw ache after all the chomping! Some people complain that the curry can turn an off looking colour, well a simple tip to rescue any off coloured dish  - add a pinch of turmeric to give it a golden glow. Don’t be too heavy handed with it because it does have a bitter taste.

Try making your own chapatis as well. If you’ve never tried then you will be so surprised at how quick and easy they are to make and living in our house, any rest from rice is a blessing (I joke I love rice seven times a week). We’ve also tried adding spices to the flatbread dough and it certainly makes them a special treat to go with a BBQ in the summer.

Now for the Pulka, otherwise known as the flat bread or a chapati. I used this method shown here by a fantastic group of Indian food bloggers, one of them has posted some excellent tips on how to take good photos of your food and how to set a light box. All tips which I hope to take on board as my blogging progresses.

You’ll se that if someone else has posted a recipe I’m tempted not to write it out myself and just link to it. Then I’ll expand and tell you how I would change it or how it turned out, most of the time it’s just a bit of waffle. What’s the point in posting a recipe that someone else has already done but 10x better than you could write it? Instead of just copying it and taking the credit why not just link back to someone else who put in the hard work for you? That way giving them some credit for your ideas. After all most of us didn’t invent cooking, we’re just using other peoples great ideas and twisting them in our own way. Yes, please post your exciting recipes with unusual twists but don’t forget to show us where you got the original idea. So I might post a selection of step-by-step photos or a whole recipe but only if the mood takes me. And no I won’t always show you where I got my ideas from, otherwise we’ll be here all day.

 

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