Banana curry makes a slightly sweet and unusual addition to an Indian meal. The bananas you use need to be under-ripe, preferably at the stage where there is still just a little bit of green evident. They are cooked and served in their skins, which of course are NOT eaten. This recipe was adapted from one by the Indian food writer Manisha Kanani.
Makes 6 pieces; serves 3 - 6 people as part of a meal.
2 under-ripe bananas
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons gram flour
3/4 teaspoon cumin powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
a scant 1/4 teaspoon chilli powder
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 1/2 teaspoons oil (I use groundnut/peanut oil)
4 1/2 teaspoons chopped coriander leaves (or parsley)
2 tablespoons oil
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon black mustard seeds
If you're unfamiliar with any of the ingredients, find out more about them here:
Start by measuring out your ground spices, sugar, and gram flour, then separately measure the whole seeds.
Wash, dry, then top and tail the bananas. Cut them into three equal pieces, and make a slice along the inside curve of each that extends exactly to the banana's centre.
Mix the dry spices with the 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil, then mix in the chopped coriander leaves.
Gently stuff each piece of banana with a sixth of the stuffing without breaking it open. This may feel daunting at first, but if you ease small amounts in, using the side of a teaspoon (and a judicious finger), you'll soon get the hang of it.
Ta-da! Ready to cook!
Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat, and add the whole seeds. After a couple of minutes, they should begin to pop (don't worry too much if they don't).
Gently add the stuffed bananas to the pan - the cut side up. Pop on a lid and turn the heat down to low.
Cook for 15 mins, lifting the lid every so often to turn the bananas so they cook evenly. Avoid turning them on to their cut side however!
And they're done! The stuffing is still intact (thanks to the gram flour). You may notice that the whole seeds are practically incinerated. Do not be tempted to scrape them out to serve with the dish. The pan will also need a good soaking and scouring with a wire-wool soap pad!
Any questions? You can use the comments form at the bottom of the page.
Did you know?
You'll find recipes at the back of all the books in the Send for Octavius Guy series: