My introduction to cooking was meats and because of that I can feel quite lost if I have to come up with vegetarian dishes. Since potatoes are a universal favourite, this is what I came up with one time when the food had to be vegetarian. The potatoes and herbs are two components that always stay and I play around with the other ingredients, sometimes adding nothing else and letting the herbs shine. Since I always have olives, capers and chilies lying around, that’s what I added once and this combination is my favourite; I also added breadcrumbs one time which added extra texture to the dish. Also, this is good recipe for the festive/ fasting season coming up. I usually serve this with a yogurt dip, it’s basically hung curd/ Greek yogurt seasoned with salt and whatever else you like; I added some za’atar and olive oil which basically makes it a za’atar labneh I guess.
In other news, we unexpectedly had to rush home this weekend for a bit of bad news; life being what it is though, a little light will always creep through darkness, a little happiness amidst grief. Although we rushed home to offer our condolences, we also realized that baby boy had a night out that same weekend. We last saw him beginning of July and were to meet him next only in December so being able to spend some precious time with him now was a real bonus; as circumstances would have it, we were able to share some sorrow along with a little bit of unexpected joy; and that I guess is what life is all about, that and good food. So give this super simple vegetarian recipe a try, you won’t be sorry, I promise!
- Baby potatoes- 500 grams
- Fresh coriander leaves- 1 cup
- Fresh mint leaves- 1 cup
- Butter- 2 tbsp
- Olive oil or vegetable oil- 2-3 tsp
- Green olives (pitted)- 8-10
- Capers- 2-3 tsp
- Green chilies- 2-3
- Salt- if required
- Wash and clean the potatoes. Cook the potatoes (leave the skin on) in boiling salted water till just cooked; the potatoes should be cooked but not mushy. If your potatoes are on the larger side, cut in half.
- Finely chop together the olives, capers and green chilies till it becomes like a coarse paste. Separately chop the mint and coriander leaves, set aside.
- In a large pan or wok, heat the butter and oil, then add the potatoes and fry for a few minutes so the potatoes get a slightly crispy crust. Then add the chopped olives, chilies and capers, fry for a minute or two, check for seasoning and add salt if required. Take the pan off the heat and add the chopped herbs.
- I serve this with a hung curd/ Greek yogurt dip. I seasoned the yogurt simply with some salt and added some za’atar and olive oil to it.
- You can use all oil and omit butter for a healthier and/or vegan version.
- Use any herbs you like, coriander and mint happen to be my favourite.
- You can omit or substitute the olives and capers.
- Make sure the potatoes aren’t mushy.
- I sometimes also add breadcrumbs for more texture.