Recipes: Local Chefs Dish Out Indian Cuisine
Chef Tyler Williams
Crispy Okra Chaat
Serves 4 to 6 people
In Khabar’s April cover story (“Indian Food, American Foodie”) this year, Sonia Chopra profiled several non-Indian chefs and critics who have a lot of experience making—and sharing—Indian dishes. These local foodies now offer some of their favorite Indian recipes. Happy cooking…and feasting.
Chef de Cuisine, Chai Pani
Masala Collards and Potato
Serves 4 to 5 people
A note from Chef Peach:
Collard greens are a favorite side dish of the American South. They are a staple in the Kashmir region of India and have been recorded as being cultivated for at least 2000 years in several countries.
They contain high amounts of iron and vitamin C and are even known to contain nutrients which have anti-cancer properties. Most importantly, however, they are delicious and inexpensive. The leaves, which taste mild and slightly bitter, are quite firm and need to be cooked for a while to soften up.
Collards are available in Georgia most of the year, and this spring, you can buy them from your local farmers market. My family adds brown sugar to collard greens to cut the bitterness, as do a lot of folks in the South. I tend to prefer the bitter flavor in this Indian preparation because of the way it works with the sourness and pungency of the vinegar to balance out the flatness and light sweetness of the potato. This is a dried preparation that I often make at home. It goes well with daal and roti.
1 bunch collard greens (9-10 leaves)
4 small potatoes (Yukon gold creamers work very well)
2 tsp vinegar (apple cider or rice wine works well)
5 black peppercorns, crushed
1 tsp mustard seed
1 tsp cumin seed
1 red onion, julienned
2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp red chili powder (or more if you prefer it hotter)
2 tbsp oil
1. Fill a large pot 3/4 full of water and put it on to boil. Add a generous amount of salt, the black peppercorns, and the vinegar.
2. While the water comes to a boil, wash the collards. Then remove the stems with a knife and chop the leaves into small pieces (about the size of a postal stamp).
3. Add the collards to the boiling water and let them cook on medium heat for 10-15 minutes. Remove them with a slotted spoon and keep in a bowl.
4. Into the same water, add the potatoes whole with skins on (if the potatoes are larger, peel and cut them into large pieces first). Let them cook on a medium flame until a knife slides into the potato relatively easily. Remove from the water. If the potatoes are whole, run them under cold water for a few seconds, peel them, and let them rest for a few minutes. Then cut them into halves or quarters.
5. In a kadhai or pan, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Once hot, add the mustard seed. Let it pop for a few moments then add the cumin seed.
6. Once the cumin seed is browned slightly, add the onions and a pinch of salt.
7. Cook the onions until they are lightly browned, then add the ginger-garlic paste.
8. Once the ginger-garlic paste is cooked, add the turmeric powder. Mix in well, then add the coriander powder, cumin powder, and red chili powder.
9. Add the blanched greens and mix in well. On a medium flame, cook the greens dry for a few minutes, mixing often.
10. Add the potatoes and mix in well.
11. Taste for seasoning and enjoy.
Chef/owner, 1494 Supper Club
Curried Chicken Bruschetta
Makes topping for 24 toast points
A note from Chef Powell:
To place a Caribbean twist on your appetizers, here is a fun option. Instead of a regular chicken salad that goes as a topping for your toast points, how about curried chicken instead? It has a punch of color and flavor that brightens up any event.
1/2 lb cooked boneless chicken breast diced into small cubes
1 tbsp red onion, diced small
1 tbsp Granny Smith apple, diced small
1 tbsp celery, diced small
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tsp toasted curry powder*
Salt and chili powder to taste
24 toast points (toasted, crustless slices of bread cut in half on the diagonal)
1. In a bowl, combine all the above ingredients except toast, making sure to mix well.
2. Place a generous amount on your toast points and garnish with a sprig of parsley.
*To toast the curry powder, place it in a heavy-bottomed pan and heat it gently while shaking it constantly. Don’t allow it to burn. This should take four to five minutes over medium heat.
Executive Chef, Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta
Serves 4 to 6 people
1 lb white fish cut into 3 oz. pieces
1 large onion, sliced
2-3 green chilies, sliced
1 tsp ginger, chopped or julienned
1 tsp garlic, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
10-12 curry leaves
1 tbsp fresh coriander for garnish (optional)
2 cups coconut milk
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp cooking oil
Salt to taste
1. Marinate the fish in the juice of half a lemon, a teaspoon of turmeric powder, and a pinch of salt. Let it sit for half an hour. If using a full fish, make slits on top so that the gravy soaks in.
2. Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds. As soon as they begin to splinter, add the curry leaves, sliced onions, green chilies, garlic, ginger, a teaspoon of turmeric powder, and salt.
3. Add a cup of diluted coconut milk and cook on high heat until the onions turn translucent.
4. Put the heat on low and add the fish slices or the whole fish. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
5. Keeping the heat on low, add the thick coconut milk and let it cook for another 2 minutes.
6. Add chopped tomatoes on top and sprinkle coriander for garnish.
7. Serve hot with rice.
Enjoyed reading Khabar magazine? Subscribe to Khabar and get a full digital copy of this Indian-American community magazine.
blog comments powered by Disqus