I keep hearing from my non-Indian friends how much they love Indian curry. They always ask me about the flavors and spices we use. It feels so good to talk about your homeland cuisine and through this blog I help this wonderful cuisine reach out to thousands of readers. Indian cuisine is very diverse. Ever state, city, town, village has some unique recipe to offer. We have been using spices and certain flavors since many generations. Our forefathers knew the benefits of turmeric, whole spices, basil, cardamom, etc which the world is discovering now. Food is a science in my country!
We have all kinds of flavors in our cooking. In fact, the traditional Thali consists of such multiple flavors in one meal. There is a little bit of everything on that plate. Our food is applauded for its gravies, mouth-burning spices and complex flavor pairings. With its use of garam masala, cardamom, chilly powder, tamarind and other pungent ingredients, the resulting taste combinations are unlike anything found elsewhere around the world. There have been studies to find out why Indian food is so good — it’s because we use fewer number of overlapping flavors as ingredients. While in Western cuisines, I have noticed, we try to club ingredients which taste similar whereas in Indian cooking we use ingredients which do not have any chemical overlaps but each of them bring in their own flavor to the dish, making it exceptional.
If you are a regular reader of Cookilicious, you would have seen and tried some of the Indian dishes that I have prepared in the past. Paneer Kofta Curry, Black Eyed Peas and Dill Curry, Veg Kolhapuri Gravy, Paruppu Usili Curry are some of the popular recipes on the blog for you to check out. Coming back to this recipe, it’s called Achari Aloo Capsicum which if I translate, means Pickled Potatoes and Bell Pepper curry. As a country, we are also known for our pickles/achar. These pickles are generally pickled with oil, vinegar, lemon juice or water and are often made into fresh relish and chutney. We make all kinds of pickles – raw mango pickle, lemon pickle, carrot pickle, green chillies pickle, garlic pickle, Indian Gooseberry pickle, tomato pickle to name a few best ones. Personally I love the raw mango pickle. Its tangy, spicy and lip smacking. I usually enjoy a little pickle with curd rice or any Paratha. That is one heck of a combination! In this recipe, I have combined the flavors of pickle in the simple Potato and Bell Pepper curry.
In a pan, heat oil. Temper mustard seeds. Add and fry garlic till they turn golden. Be careful to not burn them. Now add the potatoes and salt. Saute them till the potatoes turn soft and are cooked. Now add the onions. Saute them till they become translucent.
I had some spinach in my pantry and chose to use them in the recipe as well. So you can skip this step or add spinach if you wish to. Cook it for a minute and then add the Bell Peppers. Saute till they are cooked. Now the main crucial step – add the pickle liberally. Give it a good mix. Add salt after this if required, because the pickle already has salt in it.
That is it. Achari Aloo Capsicum/Pickled Potato Bell Peppers is ready.
Serve this curry with any Indian bread or rice like Saffron Rice/Sesame flavored Rice /Cilantro Pot rice (Spinach Infused). Suggest you keep the rice mildly flavored so that you can enjoy the flavors of this curry.
- 1 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4 large potatoes, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped spinach (optional)
- 3-4 tbsp raw mango pickle
- Salt as required
- In a pan, heat oil. Temper mustard seeds. Add and fry garlic till they turn golden. Be careful to not burn them. Now add the potatoes and little salt. Saute them till the potatoes turn soft and are cooked. Now add the onions. Saute them till they become translucent.
- I had some spinach in my pantry and chose to use them in the recipe as well. So you can skip this step or add spinach if you wish to. Cook it for a minute and then add the Bell Peppers. Saute till they are cooked. Now the main crucial step - add the pickle liberally. Give it a good mix. Add salt after this if required, because the pickle already has salt in it.
- Achari Aloo Capsicum/Pickled Potato Bell Peppers is ready.
- You can add any other pickle variety to this dish to give it a different taste.
- Add salt only after checking the curry after adding the pickle.
- Reduce the quantity of pickle if you want to make it less tangy and hot.
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For this recipe I recommend