Bowl of Opo-Potato Curry
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Opo-Potato Curry
Nepal     Lauka
Serves
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
5 w/rice  
***
1-3/4 hr  
Yes
This is an excellent vegetarian curry, or side dish for non-veg menus. If making ahead, stir in the peas at the last minute during re-heating, or their bright color will fade. Note that the tomatoes are put in late, as their acid will harden the potatoes if put in earlier.






1
1
1
8
1
-------
2
1/2
1
2
1/2
1
1/2
-------
1
2
1
1/4
2
-------
3
1-3/4
#
#
#
oz
c
---
cl
in
t
t
T
t
t
---
t
t
t
t

---
T
c
Opo Gourd (1)
Potatoes (2)
Tomatoes
Onion
Frozen Peas
-- Spicing
Garlic
Ginger
Cumin Seed
Coriander Seed
Turmeric
Chili Powder (3)  
Salt
-- Tempering
Fenugreek Seed
Mustard Seed
Cumin Seed
Salt
Chili, dried (4)
---------
Ghee (5)
Water
Prep   -   (40 min)
  1. Peel OPO thinly and cut into about 3/4 inch cubes. Peel POTATOES and cut into about 3/4 inch cubes. Mix. Hold in cold water until needed.
  2. Scald TOMATOES 1 minute in Boiling Water. Quench in cold water, peel and chop small.
  3. Quarter ONION lengthwise and slice thin crosswise.
  4. Measure out Frozen Peas and let thaw.
  5. Crush GARLIC and chop medium. Slice GINGER very thin and chop medium. Force both through your Garlic Press, then chop a bit to break up fibers. Alternatively, you can chop them both fine and pound to paste in a mortar.
  6. Grind CUMIN and CORIANDER to powder. in your spice grinder. Mix together all Spicing items.
  7. Mix together all Tempering items.
Run   -   (55 min)
  1. In a wok or spacious sauté pan (3-1/2 qt), heat Ghee over moderate heat. Stir in Tempering mix and fry stirring until aromatic. The Fenugreek and Chilis should darken slightly, but not blacken.
  2. Stir in Onions and fry stirring over moderate heat until starting to color.
  3. Drain Opo mix and stir in. Cover and sweat over moderate heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Stir in Spicing mix until vegetables are evenly coated, then Water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer, stirring now and then, until Potatoes are nearly tender, about 15 minutes.
  5. Stir in Tomatoes. Bring back to a boil and continue to simmer until Potatoes and Opo are tender.
  6. Stir in Frozen Peas and simmer another minute.
  7. Serve hot with steamed Basmati rice.
NOTES:
  1. Opo Gourd:   Sold as "Opo Squash", these are very common in produce markets here in Southern California. Many recipes say you can substitute Zucchini for Opo, but that isn't true, their cooking properties are very different. You can substitute other gourds, such as Luffa or Fuzzy Melon, but Opo is much more common than they are. For details see our Bottle Gourd page.
  2. Potatoes:   White Rose or similar work well in recipes of this sort. Avoid Klondike Gold type potatoes - they quickly turn to mush with long cooking. For details see our Potato Page.
  3. Chili Powder / Flake:   Khandela or slightly hotter Reshempatti will make this curry "satisfyingly hot" by Southern California standards. If you are from the Frozen North, you might use milder Kashmir powder for your first run. For details see our Indian Chilis page.
  4. Dried Red Chilis:   Thai Chilis (hot) are fine, or the common Japones (not as hot). For details see our Chili Page.
  5. Ghee   Make sure it's "Butter Ghee", not Vegetable Ghee which may be Trans Fats. Oil could be used, but Ghee will give a more authentic flavor. Ghee is available in most markets that serves an Indian, Caucasian or North African community.
  6. Comments:   The pattern recipe came from a Nepalese food writer, but it did not produce a satisfactory result. I have cut the amount of water in half, delayed adding the tomatoes to keep the potatoes tender, and made a few minor adjustments in the proportions. The ingredients and basic procedures remain the same.
  7. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch ar=as required tt=to taste
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