In India, dill is often prepared like spinach or any other green leafy vegetable. It isn't simply reserved for garnishes or used in small doses like other herbs but rather cooked up as a side dish to be eaten with chapatis and dal.
When I was younger, it definitely wasn't my favourite option for dinner but as an adult, I have grown to love the flavourful 'vegetable', often prepared with roasted, crushed peanuts or roasted mung dal.
I had a small bunch of dill left over from this dinner but not enough to make a stand alone vegetable side. I though it might pair well with peas and tomatoes, and it does! The dill definitely takes center stage but is not overly powerful. If you aren't a big fan of dill, leave it out all together; the peas and tomato combination is wonderful by itself.
I realise too, that cooking Indian recipes often involve a long ingredients list which can seem intimidating if you are not accustomed to cooking Indian food regularly. So I've decided to post simple Indian recipes as and when I cook them. I can also post a few tips for cooking Indian food, if that seems useful to anyone.
Indian spiced peas with tomatoes and dill
Makes 2 servings
sunflower or vegetable oil
1 small onion
2 cloves garlic minced
2 medium tomatoes (not too ripe) cut in large cubes
2 cups fresh (or frozen) peas
1 tsp corriander powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
red chilli powder (to taste)
2 fistfuls roughly chopped dill
- Add oil to a hot frying pan. Add onions and cook till translucent. Add garlic, and cook for a minute.
- Add corriander, cumin and chilli powder. Be careful not to burn the spices. Keep stirring and add water, a teaspoon at a time, if needed, to avoid burning the spices. Cook till 'raw' smell of spices disappears, about 1 minute
- Add tomatoes. Cook for a minute or two, till tomatoes still hold their shape but skin starts to pull away.
- Add peas, stir, and cook till peas are almost done. Add dill, stir, cook for a minute. Turn heat off, cover pan for five minutes.
- Serve with rice or chapatis and yogurt. Enjoy!