Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Beetroot & Potato Curry

Talk about coincidences! We just happened to make this dish on Sunday and I thought I’d write up about it in week or two’s time. Two days later, my dear niece D in New Jersey, USA writes asking about the recipe for this beetroot curry that she had tasted on her trip to the UK and which I had promised to send to her but just never got round to it. Well D, here it is, my apologies for the delay but hope it’s not dampened your enthusiasm and that you will try it out soon.

Beetroot is a delightful and tasty vegetable and like many people I’d mainly had it in a salad, and then only if it was the raw beetroot. I just didn’t like the cooked and vinegar pickled beetroot that we get here in the UK supermarkets. Along comes my husband and introduces me to this finger-licking, unctuous curry and I have been hooked ever since.

Health benefits:
Beetroot, including its stalks and green leaves, is highly nutritious and some people even term it as one of the Superfoods. It has high Vitamin A content and is rich in the minerals potassium, and calcium with small amounts of iron and magnesium. It’s an excellent source of fibre, both soluble and insoluble. Soluble fibre is good in helping to lower the LDL [‘bad cholesterol’] in the blood. It has beta-carotene which is an anti-oxidant. Best of all, it has virtually no fat and very few calories. And, it is considered to be an aphrodisiac….hmmm….maybe good to include in your Valentine menu! The sugars in beetroot are the slow-converting variety so you wont be getting any blood sugar highs, and the folate in cooked beetroot is considered to protect against Alzheimer’s, dementia and hypertension.

250 gms Raw beetroots, washed, peeled and chopped into 1cm cubes [beware the red staining – wear gloves if you wish although it does wash off hands quite easily]
2 medium sized potatoes, washed and cut into large chunky pieces [they need to be bigger than the beetroot otherwise they’ll just break up]
1 bay leaf
1 inch cinnamon stick
3-4 green cardamoms
2-3 pieces cloves
1 medium sized onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped or ground
2 inch piece ginger, chopped or ground
2 small green chillies, chopped
1 tspn – sugar
1.5 tspn – coriander powder
0.75 tspn – cumin powder
0.25 tspn – turmeric powder
2 tbspn – vegetable oil
Salt to taste
Hot water from the kettle – just enough to cover the veg
Slice of lemon and chopped green coriander to garnish

1. Heat oil in a pan and when hot, flavour it with the dry whole spices i.e. the bay leaf, cinnamon stick, green cardamoms and cloves.
2. When they begin to turn brown, add the green chillies first and 30 seconds later add the onions. Cook on medium heat, stirring frequently until they begin to go brown round the edges.
3. Add in the sugar, stir for 30 seconds and then add in the chopped/ground ginger and garlic. Let it cook for about a minute or so.
4. Add the potatoes, stir and let them cook and go a little brown all over. This seals them and prevents them breaking down too easily in the sauce. This should take no more than 1-2 minutes.
5. Add the prepared beetroot, coriander powder, cumin powder and turmeric. Stir, cover with lid and let it cook for about 5 minutes. Stir frequently to prevent it sticking to the bottom of the pan.
6. Now add sufficient hot water to cover the vegetables. Cover and simmer on low-medium heat until the potatoes are done and just beginning to break down and little and thicken the sauce.
7. Garnish with the chopped green coriander and a squeeze of lemon juice and serve.

This dish goes really well with boiled rice. Children love seeing the rice go pink! It can also be eaten with couscous, pitta bread or a nice crusty roll.

I’m sure there are many other ways to enjoying this superb vegetable and now that I know it's one of the superfoods [see I’m learning as I write here] I shall be trying out different ways of enjoying it. If you do come across something good beetroot recipe yourself please feel free to share it here.

Happy healthy eating!


  1. hi it seems delicious - will buy beetroot this weekend when I go to the market and will try the recipe.


  2. It is really finger-licking good as I've tasted this at your place and now I have finally got the recipe...I am going to try this and will let know how it turns out.

    Please keep sharing as it makes life so much easier 'coz we don't have to go searching for recipes. Sometimes people get so frustrated wondering everyday 'what to cook', now everybody will love to try out new dishes and no more daily headache about 'what to cook'.


  3. Excellent recipe and will certainly try it without Asha's interference.
    Comments on healthy eating and living, following main recipe,are inspiring. Surprisingly if one follows Ramdev's advise all of it can be acheived
    good health,mental peace/stability,energy. All one needs is 40 minutes a day.

  4. Quite informative Indeed .I think, we Indians do need more awareness regarding healthy food with recently found mutant gene in Asians leading to increased incidence of Heart Disease. I hope We Rathores would make some changes in our eating habits.......................ha ha.