Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Potatoes and Kale in a Yogurt Sauce

When I was around 10 years old, some one presented me a board game - The Backgammon. For some reason, I never really understood the game and didn't care for it much. Couple of days back the little guy insisted on buying a Backgammon set. He apparently read about it in a book and was very keen on learning the game.

I decided to break in to the Backgammon mode one more time, hoping the game would entice me this time around. We did what we do best when we have to learn some thing new - watch a you tube video. After all these years, the game finally made sense to me and  we both fell in love with the awesomeness of the game. 

The whole thing got me thinking - In case you haven't figured it out yet, I do a lot of thinking. Most of the time nothing good ever comes out of it. Just thoughts floating around aimless in my grey matter. Coming back to my thought process, I would have never in a million years on my own tried to understand the game. If not for the little guy I would have been oblivious to the  Backgammon pleasures. 

Having conquered the Backgammon, I decided to overcome one of my cooking catastrophes. A lot of Indian dishes use  plain Yogurt. The key to these dishes is to add the Yogurt at the right time and turn off the heat, so the Yogurt does not curdle or coagulate. I always end up curdling and coagulating and never get it right. I had given up on it entirely until the Backgammon episode. If after all these years, I can figure out a board game, I could try and conquer the curdling phenomenon.

Potatoes and Backgammon

The dish has many variations, Here is what I came up with -

2 cups of boiled potatoes, cut in to bite size pieces.

1 cup of Kale

1 tsp black pepper (I used fresh ground pepper for this dish)

1 tsp chili powder

1 tsp coriander powder

1 tsp cumin powder

2 cloves of garlic

1 tsp grated ginger

1 green chili - finely chopped

1 tsp mustard seeds, cumin seeds and Chana Dal

1 medium onion finely chopped

1 cup of plain Yogurt - Add little water to get the right consistency.


Heat about 2 tsp of oil in a pan.

Add the mustard, chana dal and cumin seeds. This is followed by onions, kale, ginger and garlic.

Let them cook for a minute and then add the spices (black pepper,chili,coriander and cumin powder), salt and potatoes.

Let them cook for 2- 4 minutes.

At this point all the ingredients in the dish are cooked and done. This is key to the dish. we don't want to boil the dish once the yogurt is added.

Turn off the heat.

Whisk yogurt and water in a bowl and add the mixture to the pan. Cover the pan and let the yogurt and spices mingle with each other for about 5 minutes.

You have the perfect curdle free yogurt saucy potatoes. The kale adds a nice touch to the dish and mingles effortlessly with the potatoes and the Yogurt.