If you like really flavourful Indian curries, try this delicious and colourful Bengali Tadkari. It uses Panch Phoran, a Bengali five spice mix, which is a whole spice blend of Fenugreek, Nigella, Cumin, Black Mustard and Fennel seeds in equal amounts. You can buy this either as a blend or you can make it up yourself. This recipe contains ALL of your five-a-day!
Bengali Tadkari – Serves 2
1 medium onion, diced (160g)
2 large tomatoes, diced (160g)
2 medium carrots, diced (160g)
160g chestnut mushrooms, cut into bite sized pieces
80g green beans, cut in half
80g frozen peas
2 tbsp mustard oil (or vegetable oil)
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp ginger grated
1 green chilli, finely chopped (optional)
Approx 300ml water or vegetable stock
Whole Spice - Panch Phoran Spice Blend (1tbsp for 2) or
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp nigella seeds
1 tsp black mustard seeds
1 tsp fennel seeds
½ tsp fenugreek seeds
½ tsp turmeric
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
Heat the oil in a heavy based saucepan and fry the whole spices (Panch Phoran) for only 10 seconds as the spices can burn easily and turn bitter. Add the onion with a pinch of salt and cook for about 10 minutes over a medium heat until soft. Keep stirring the onions and spice to ensure nothing burns.
Add the garlic and ginger for a couple of minutes before adding the tomatoes. Cook for a further 2 minutes.
Add the ground spices and cook for 2 minutes, adding a splash of water if the spices look like they are catching. If using the chilli, make a slit lengthways and add to the pan with the carrot and mushrooms. Stir well until it is all covered in the spice paste. Add the hot water or stock and cook for 5 minutes before adding the green beans. Cook for a further 7 minutes, adding the peas for the last 2 minutes.
Enjoy! - Your 5-a-day done!