Bengali split pea curry with Tenderstem broccoli and caramelised shallots
Making a curry from scratch can seem a daunting task, but this recipe is easy enough to make on a Friday night without causing any stress!
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 30-35 minutes
1 large onion, roughly chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
2 cm piece fresh ginger, roughly chopped
2 tbsp vegetable oil
200g yellow split peas
200g tenderstem broccoli sliced into 3cm pieces
Small bunch coriander, roughly chopped
Freshly ground black pepper and sea salt
For the spice mix:
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp fennel seeds
2 tsp fenugreek seeds
2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp nigella seeds
1-2 tsp dried chili flakes, to taste
For the caramelised shallots:
300g shallots, peeled and cut into thin slices
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 Make the spice mix by dry frying all the spices together for a minute or so. As soon as you smell their aroma wafting up strongly from the pan, tip them into a pestle and mortar and roughly grind. Set aside.
2 Puree the onion, garlic and ginger in a food processor until smooth, adding a tablespoon or so of cold water to help this process along if necessary. Heat the oil in a large heavy-based pan and gently fry the onion, garlic and ginger puree until soft and translucent. This should take around 10 minutes.
3 Add the ground spices and fry for a further couple of minutes before adding the split peas. Pour in enough boiling water to cover the peas by about 3cm and bring up to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 20 minutes stirring from time to time. You may need to add a little more water towards the end if it is looking a little dry.
4 While the curry is cooking, caramelise the shallots by stir frying with the oil in a large frying pan or wok over a medium high heat. Cook until golden and crisp, then drain on kitchen paper. Set aside.
5 Stir the tenderstem broccoli through the curry and continue to cook for around 5-8 minutes or until it is tender but with a little bite. Season to taste.
6 Serve the curry topped with the caramelised shallots and sprinkled with the coriander. Great served with plain rice or naan bread
Recipe and images courtesy of tenderstem.co.uk