Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Sabz Jalfrezi

Sabz Jalfrezi (Spicy Mixed Vegetables) is a popular veggie medley that I never prepared until last night. It's entirely due to my love for a certain irresistable appetizer. Whenever my fridge has an overabundance of random vegetables, I make Vegetable Pakoras. But I wanted to try something different this time around, and thus after six years of cooking Indian food, I *finally* made Sabz Jalfrezi.

Cauliflower is a common choice for the vegetable array. But I'm saving the one in my fridge for Aloo Gobi this weekend. Instead of the cauliflower, I used a sweet potato, one of my favorite vegetables.

1 zucchini, diced
1 yellow squash, diced
1 sweet potato, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 inch X 1 inch piece of ginger
5 cloves of garlic
2 green chilies
1 medium onion, diced
2 Tbsp oil
2 tomatoes, diced
1/4 cup cashews
1/4 cup almonds
1 handful of cilantro
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp black pepper
3/4 cup of water (will vary)
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
lemon juice (optional)

Fry the onion lightly over a low flame. I prefer a slow sauteé in the very beginning of many recipes because it allows several steps in a recipe to proceed simultaneously. While the onions are cooking, grind the chilies, garlic cloves, and ginger into a paste. Once the onions are translucent and have lost the raw edge to their scent, add the paste, and fry for a minute over a medium flame.

Add the cumin, coriander, and black pepper and fry for another minute before adding the tomatoes. The spice powders might be on the verge of scorching, so pay attention and add the tomatoes before that happens! While the tomatoes are releasing their juices, grind the cashews and almonds into a fine powder. Once the tomatoes have broken down, add the powder and cook the mixture for about 2 min. If you used dark-roasted cashews and almonds, you can proceed without cooking for the 2 min.

Add the water and turmeric, then the french beans and sweet potatoes. After the mixture has simmered for a few minutes, add the rest of vegetables. It's not absolutely necessary to stagger the vegetables being added to the pot, but it helps the vegetable medley cook more uniformly. Stir well, turn the heat down low, cover, and simmer for about 5-10 min, depending on how tender you like your vegetables to be. Salt to taste, add the garam masala (and lemon juice if you have it), and garnish with cilantro.

Sabz Jalfrezi served with Chapatis


vkn said...

Hi Verdant - discovered you only today. See the coincidence! You cooked Sabz Jalfrezi and me Prawns Jalfrezi on the same day December 28th. Was that a telepathy?

You have a wonderful blog out here and I am adding to my monster list of Indian food bloggers to stay in touch. Cheers!

VK Narayanan
Chef de cuisine
My Dhaba

Tina Jennifer D'Silva said...

Hey Verdant... discovered u on VKNs site.. Awesome recipes.. Do visit my blog too...


Priya Bhaskaran said...

Hey Verdant! Even I discoverd you today as VKN & Tina. I have tagged you to my cooking list:) You have good recipes in your blog.

Anonymous said...

Hi Verdant,

just saw ur blog today...saw in priya's blog....ur recipes look like "must try ones"..looks gr8 :)

Vegan Rapunzel said...

Whoa... I made this tonight. I had printed this recipe back over a month ago. (It's 9/8/06 today.)

I *finally* got around to making it.

Now granted several attributes about my dish was a little different.

For example, I've got Lemon Pepper Chiles growing in my garden. Small yellow peppers that pack a punch. (Each one is only half the length of your pinky finger.) So, I used 2 of these instead of a green chile, taking care to eliminate the seeds lest I blow my mouth off my face. (I can't take the heavy heat like you can.) Anyway, I minced my garlic/chiles/ginger instead of pasting them. End result essentially the same. ;)

Next, my cauliflower had turned funky too quickly. So, I had to ditch using that and I forgot I was out of sweet potato.

Your directions called for french beans. (But it's not listed in the ingredients.) I realized that this is what the dish was missing. (After scanning the ingredients, I knew it needed something more cruciferous to balance the carb heavy veggies.) Well, I happened to have some Haricort Vert fine green beans in the freeze. So, I added about 5 oz worth. This was PERFECT.

Next, I used red, yellow and organe mini peppers instead of the large bells. (That and the green ones upset my tummy for some reason.)

Next, it's late in the day where I am (EST) and I was getting tired. So, I subbed 1 14oz can of diced tomatoes and kept the water amount the same b/c the nuts soaked it up pretty quickly.

Lastly, I bumped up the cumin and coriander dose, same with the finishing touch of garam masala (I made it home-made 2 weeks - wow, homemade is SO much more aromatic!) And finished with about a 1 Tbsp of lemon juice and 1 tsp of sea salt.

WOOF! Not only is this dish amazingly good but it's positively GORGEOUS to look at.

Since I'd already had my dinner earlier in the evening, I only ate a few bites and had to stop myself before I blew up.

Tell you what, I'll be glad to take a picture of mine and send it to you via PM on VB if you like. :)

Verdant said...

I'd love to see pictures! Glad you liked this recipe!

Vegan Rapunzel said...

oops! Hubby and I got so hungry the next night that I *totally* forgot to take a picture until well after we were done.

However, I'm DEFINITELY making this again (*licks chops*)... and perhaps in the next few days. So when I do, I PROMISE to take a pix and send you a PM. :)

Vegan Rapunzel said...

Btw... how do you pronouce this dish's name? (I feel like a dunce trying to do so when I describe this dish to my friends.) :D

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