Vibrant Root Veg Curry With Turmeric Rice & Cooling raita

The colours in this dish are quite lurid. Thanks, mainly, to the turmeric, which, I feel, always lends an air of Technicolor to food. Plus a whole heap of health benefits.  So it’s turmeric all the way, in the curry and in the rice too. 

Of course, the beetroot is no shrinking violet when it comes to colour.  There are sweet potatoes and potatoes in here but beetroot barges in and tinges the whole lot with its deep pinkish purple tones. Glorious!

This healthy bowl of tantalising curry is topped off with a generous dollop of onion and cucumber raita, which adds a perfect crunch and a welcome cooling effect.

Vibrant Root Veg Curry with Turmeric Rice & Cooling Raita

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the rice

  • 250g basmati rice
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • Sea salt to taste

For the curry

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • A couple of medium sized potatoes, chopped into approx 2cm cubes
  • 1 large sweet potato (or 2 smaller ones), peeled and chopped into 2cm cubes
  • A couple of largish beetroots (or 4 smaller ones), peeled and chopped into 2cm cubes
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • About 200ml of water

For the raita

  • 450ml plain Greek yoghurt
  • 90ml milk
  • About an 8 cm chunk of cucumber
  • 1 small onion, peeled and chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • A good grinding of black pepper

Method

  • Before you do anything, put your rice in a saucepan, cover with water and leave it to soak while you get the curry bubbling away.
  • Heat your oil in a large pan and add the cumin seeds and black mustard seeds, frying for just a few seconds.
  • Add the vegetables along with the rest of the spices and stir, cooking for about 5 minutes. Then add the tomatoes and water, stir again, and simmer for about 20 minutes until the veg is tender.
  • While the curry is simmering away, get on with the rice. Rinse it well after its soaking and then drain.
  • Heat the oil in a pan, which will hold your rice and when hot add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Then tip in the rice (be careful as the oil may splutter). Stir in the turmeric, chilli, salt and puree. Pour over enough water to cover the rice by about 1.5cm. Bring to the boil then simmer very gently, with a lid on, for about 10 minutes.
  • Once the rice has absorbed the water, turn the heat out and leave the rice to sit for a while. If it still looks really waterlogged but the rice is cooked, just drape a clean tea towel over the pan and leave for 5 – 10 minutes.
  • Finally for the raita: Chop your chunk of cucumber in half and scoop out the seedy, watery middle. Chop the cucumber into small pieces, then mix all of the raita ingredients together.