My mum looks after kids at home, she’s a family day care mum. About 10 years ago (wow) she looked after these too angelic boys who we’ll call J and L. The were absolutely beautiful and came from an absolutely beautiful family. Anyway, for Christmas one year J and L’s lovely mum bought my mum a spice box from a lovely little boutique. Inside were some Indian curry mixtures but a special blend of whole spices, panch phoron, was my favourite. A blend of mustard, fennel, cumin, and fenugreek seeds in equal parts. The label suggested adding it when sauteeing vegetables and we loved it so much we used up the whole packet quite quickly. Thankfully we had all the spices on hand and we quickly made up our own mixture with less of the bitter fenugreek and more mustard seeds to match our tastes.
I used 3 cups of mixed frozen and fresh vegetables. You can just as easily use green peas, chopped capsicum (pepper), parboiled diced potatoes or even sliced snowpeas. The idea is to make sure that all the vegetables are chopped to the same size and will cook at around the same time. Back in Australia I would often make this out of the frozen packet of chopped veges that had diced carrot, peas and potato. So easy and quick!
- 3 cups chopped vegetables (I used sliced baby carrots, green beans and corn)
- 2 tbsp. butter
- 1 tbsp. oil
- 2 tsp. mustard seeds
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. fennel
- 1/2. tsp. fenugreek seeds
- 1/2 a red onion slices
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 1/2 stick of cinnamon
- a few curry leaves
- 2-3 dried red chillies chopped
- salt to taste
In a large frypan melt the butter and oil together. The oil helps keep the butter from burning. Add the mustard seeds, fennel, cumin and fenugreek. Once the mustard seeds start popping add, the cinnamon, curry leaves and chilli. Fry these off for a few minutes letting the oil absorb the flavours.
Now add the sliced onion and garlic and let the onion soften for a few minutes. When the garlic and onion have picked up a bit of colour add the mixed vegetables.
Once the vegetables are in add a cm of water and let the vegetables cook. You want them to retain some crunch but not be raw. When the water has evaporated stir the mixture and let the vegetables get some colour on them. Add salt to taste and serve with rice.