For a while, I’ve had this image in my head of this Indian-style dish of green beans cooked until tender and in a think, almost pasty red sauce. Problem is, I have no idea what it would taste like or how to make it. That didn’t stop me from trying to make up a recipe.
- A big bunch of green beans
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 Tbsp olive or peanut oil
- 2 large cloves of garlic
- 1″ ginger root, peeled and grated
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/4 tsp cardamom
- 1/4 tsp coriander
- Salt and pepper
- 1 6oz. can tomato paste
- 1 28oz. can fire roasted tomatoes
- 1/3 cup chicken or vegetable stock
Tip and tail the green beans and cut into ~1½” pieces all nifty and diagonal.
Heat the oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for ~10 minutes until translucent and golden. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for another minute or two. Add the spices and cook until fragrant. Add the tomato paste and green beans and saute for ~5 minutes. Crush the tomatoes by hand into the pan and add the rest of the juice, and the stock. Cover and steam for ~15-20 minutes until the beans are tender. Remove the cover and cook until the sauce thickens.
The result was good but not great. The main problem was that it tasted an awful lot like the curried chickpeas that we like so much — it was more tomato-y (obviously) and not as…whatever…as I hoped it would be.
I want to try this again, but go a couple different directions with this. One thought is to embrace the tomato and make it more like an Italian tomato sauce, with more thyme and oregano. Another thought is to go a Mexican angle with it, and use cumin, chile powder and chorizo to flavor the tomato sauce.
Or, you know, learn more about Indian cooking, and make a better sauce.