quick, easy and delicious Korean stir fried squid – ojingo bokkeum 오징어 볶음

This Korean style stir-fried squid is quick, easy and delicious and yet it will have your family and friends completely wowed by just how great your cooking skills are.

I was asked to write an article for a membership-based publication in Beverly Hills and they wanted a delicious recipe that might be something that is a little different in flavour and ingredients but is also quick and easy to make successfully.

Having lived and worked in South Korea before and being obsessed with their use of spice and healthy ingredients, I decided to make a quick and easy Korean dish. For the something different, I used squid instead of meat as I know very few people in the UK that cook squid on a regular basis.

This recipe is something that people may initially think that they won’t be able to recreate but trust me, once you try making it once, you will be hooked and this will become a regular mid-week go-to dish that you will crave and make often.

Korean stir fried squid - ojingobokkeum - 오징어볶음
Korean stir fried squid – ojingobokkeum – 오징어볶음

Korean food uses a lot of red chili paste and red chili flakes but don’t let this put you off as the flavours are quite mild and there is also a sweetness to the flavours. Most Asian supermarkets should stock some kind of Korean products but otherwise, check out online sources and have the ingredients delivered straight to your door.

you can buy squid from most larger supermarkets either fresh or frozen. I like to buy the frozen full squid tubes as it means I mostly have them to hand and can throw this dish together in minutes. my local supermarket sells bags of frozen squid for £5 for about ten squid, but if you don’t fancy squid then it can be swapped for chicken, pork, tofu, mixed vegetables, other seafood or beef. But you should give the squid a try at least once.

The recipe below should feed 3 or 4 with rice as an accompaniment.


500g squid, cut into bite-sized pieces

2 tbsp groundnut oil (or any other oil of your choice)

1tbsp cornstarch

to make the chili paste:

6 garlic cloves finely chopped

1tsp ginger finely chopped

3tbsp soy sauce

3tbsp red pepper flakes (gochugaru)

2 tsp sugar

2 leeks chopped into rings

1 green jalapeno chopped

1 white onion roughly chopped

2 carrots roughly chopped


to make the chili paste combine the garlic, ginger, soy, red pepper flakes and sugar. stir to make sure that all of the ingredients combine well.

heat up a pan or a wok and add the oil.

once small bubbles start to appear on the surface of the oil add the carrots, onions, leeks, and jalapeno and stirfry for about five minutes.  The vegetables will start to soften slightly.

add the chili paste and continue to stir the vegetables in the wok to make sure that the chili paste coats all of the vegetables.

Add some water to a small bowl and add the cornflour. mix together and you will have a white paste that may feel a little tough to stir.

pour this into the wok and it will help to thicken the sauce.

add the squid to the wok and stirfry making sure to keep the squid moving around the pan. the squid will cook in two or three minutes so keep an eye on it as you don’t want it to turn rubbery and tough.

you will notice the squid firm up and the colour of the flesh turn from translucent to more opaque and that’s when you know that the squid is ready.

remove the food from the wok onto a serving plate and serve with white rice.

Give this a try and let me know how you get on and I really do hope that you enjoy it as much as I do.









Roast Chicken with a Kicking Korean twist – Gochujang 고추장

Like most people, I do love a Sunday roast and more than any other roast, I do love a roast chicken. But the same flavours over and over can become boring so I have been working on some ideas to give the humble roast a bit of a kick and lots of flavour.

korean style roast chicken
korean style roast chicken


Koreans love marinading their meats in a variety of different flavours but they do really enjoy using red pepper paste, gochujang 고추장 as it has sweetness and heat. I just love this chili paste and thought that I would try using it as a marinade for a simple roast chicken. And you know what? It worked so much better than I thought it would.

This is something that you can try without much effort and it can simply take your roast dinner to the next level.

Imagine planning your typical Sunday roast chicken dinner with roast potatoes and vegetables but with more flavour and a lot more oomph! If you are having guests round then this will be the talking point of the week.


1 whole chicken

500g of Maris-piper potatoes for roasting

one whole white cabbage

2 cloves of garlic

2 dried red chilies

2 tbsp of gochujang

1 tsp soy sauce

1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

salt and pepper

1 tbsp olive oil


preheat the oven to 180oC

in a small bowl mix the soy sauce and the gochujang to make a paste

in one oven tray place the whole chicken and then rub the gochujang soy sauce mix all over the chicken.

place the chicken in the preheated oven and roast the chicken for 20 minutes per 500g.

peel the potatoes if you like or simply wash the skins and place the potatoes in a pot of water and bring them to the boil. depending on the size of the potatoes, parboil the potatoes for approximately 8 minutes then drain them and place them in another oven tray ready for the oven.

roast the potatoes for 15 minutes, bring them out of the oven turn them, roast them for another 15 minutes. take them out the oven to turn them again and judge whether they need roasting for a further 10 or 20 minutes.

roughly slice the cabbage into bite-size pieces.


once the potatoes and chicken are ready remove them from the oven and let them cool a little. The potatoes will be crisp and golden and the chicken will be a deep red from the gochujang.

in a hot pan toast the sesame seeds until they start to brown and you can smell their scent. remove from the heat and sprinkle them over the roast chicken.

heat the olive oil in a wok until its red-hot.

add the cabbage and stir-fry continuously. the edges of the cabbage leaves should brown a little in the heat of the wok. keep stirring allowing the cabbage pieces to cook and wilt slightly.

roughly chop the garlic and dried chili pepper into small pieces and add to the cabbage. Stir.

add a splash of water and continue to stir the cabbage until its soft and tender. it should be ready to serve.

for quickness and ease, I like to serve each of the dishes in a large serving bowl in the centre of the dinner table so that people can help themselves.

Korean gochujang chicken roast dinner
Korean gochujang chicken roast dinner

dig in and enjoy.

drop me a line on social media and let me know how you like to flavour your roast chicken.


baked camembert – delicious, indulgent and super easy

this is my go-to recipe when I fancy something delicious, indulgent and super easy. Baked camembert to me is a cheap and easy way to spoil myself and make myself feel good and I have to say, there is nothing nicer than a large glass of wine to go with this simple dish.

baked camembert
baked camembert

this isn’t a dish to eat if you are counting calories, watching your weight or trying to be good. Its calorific and the addition of bread for dunking is also a necessity but not kind to the scales. its an all-or-nothing kind of treat.

there are many different recipes out there and a variety of ways to add flavour to baed camembert but my go-to is simply garlic, rosemary and olive oil.

some people add honey, cranberry jam or caramelised red onions and others add lots of garlic, white wine, and even liqueur.


one camembert cheese

one or two cloves of garlic (depending on your taste)

1tbsp olive oil

1 sprig of rosemary

ground black pepper.

bread, crackers, oatcakes for dunking

selection of olives, cornichons, sliced vegetables such as carrot and cucumber.


preheat the oven to its maximum temperature so that it’s piping hot when you finally put the camembert in.

finely slice the garlic clove(s) and wash the rosemary sprig, removing the leaves from the stalk.

unwrap the camembert and slice the top off of the circular cheese, almost like a lid.

place the cheese inside an ovenproof dish and use a knife to pierce some slots in the cheese so that you can push the garlic slices inside.

sprinkle the rosemary leaves on top of the cheese, pour over the olive oil and season with sea salt and black pepper.

place the lid of the cheese (that you sliced off) on top of the cheese and you are ready to put the cheese in the oven.

Reduce the oven temperature to 200oC and place the cheese in its ovenproof dish into the oven. Set a timer for 15 minutes but do keep an eye on the cheese as it cooks.

whilst the cheese is baking prepare a number of dunkable snacks that can be eaten with the cheese. Crusty bread, oatcakes, crackers all dunk well. to balance out the richness of the cheese I always try and have some vegetables such as cucumber and carrot and I do like a few olives to go with the cheese.

if you love cheese as much as I do then this is a great snack to master and enjoy, but it may require extra hard work at the gym to work off the guilt.

give this a go.



hot and spicy authentic african jollof rice at home

Loving nothing more than hot and spicy food I was in my element when a friend and ex-colleague introduced me to hot and spicy authentic African jollof rice. We went to a Nigerian restaurant in reading and ordered up lots of different dishes and I loved them all. but I have to say the texture, flavour, and heat of the jollof really did excite me and I was keen to recreate this at home again.

jollof rice
jollof rice

jollof rice is best described as a risotto type dish but with heat, depth of flavour and spice.

the spice and heat comes from scotch bonnet chilies that look pretty friendly but most definitely pack a punch. Be super careful using these and if you can’t handle spice perhaps consider either using a tiny amount and slowly building up the heat. or replace the scotch bonnet with a milder chili such as a jalapeno.

scotch bonnet
scotch bonnet



heat oil in a pan and cook the onions until they become translucent. be careful not to burn the onions as this will make them bitter.

add tinned tomatoes, red pepper, tomato puree and the scotch bonnet chili. add the curry powder, bay leaf thyme and season with salt and pepper. (i usually simply pierce the scotch bonnet and place it in the mix to let the flavours absorb into the mix.)

pour in 500ml of water and add the stock cube, cover with a lid and bring to the boil.

rinse the rice in cold water to remove any excess starch and then add it to the mix of tomatoes and spices.

bring it to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for approximately 20 minutes or until the rice is tender.

it’s then ready to eat. I sometimes chop up pieces of chicken to put in with the rice to make more of a meal of it and I also sometimes enjoy having a fried egg on top of the rice.

give jollop a try and let me know how you get on.

super simple super tasty kedgeree

Over the past couple of months i have been eating more seafood and the more i eat the more i crave it. From pan fried mackerel and sea bass to stir fried squid and shrimp i just can’t get enough seafood.


At the supermarket i picked up smoked Kipper fillets reminding me of being a kid. My parents boiled them in milk serving them with heaps of beige cabbage and mashed potatoes.

Putting the kippers in my trolley instantly started to ponder what I could make with them.

At home a few online searches suggested kedgeree and two recipes stood out – Delia Smith‘s and Jamie Oliver‘s so i decided to marry the two recipes and make my own version. Quick and easy to prepare I literally flung this dish together in twenty minutes after the gym.  For anything that you may not like simply substitute it for something else or leave it out.


  • one pack of kipper fillets – (my pack had 2 kippers in)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 bay leaves fresh or dried
  • 200g of rice long grain or basmati
  • 1tbsp butter or oil of your choice
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes roughly chopped
  • 3 or 4 mushrooms roughly chopped
  • 1 clove garlic peeled and chopped
  • 1 thumb size piece of ginger chopped
  • 1 red chilli finely chopped
  • juice of one lemon
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
  • chopped parsley for garnish


Fill your kettle and boil it and prepare two pans on the stove – one for boiling eggs in and the other for making rice.

In one pot place 2 eggs, cover with water and boil until the eggs are hard-boiled.

Place 200g of rice in the other pan and once the kettle is boiled pour in water to just about 1cm over the surface of the rice. Put the lid on and let it boil. Stir occasionally and once the water is absorbed the rice should be perfectly fluffy. (you may have to slight top up the water if you have underestimated at the beginning)

Turn off the heat to the rice and let cool.

Whilst all the boiling is going on wash chop and prep your veggies and measure your spices.

Remove the boiled eggs and leave them to cool. Pour out and refill the pot with fresh water and place back on the hob.

Add two bay leaves to the water and the kipper fillets and bring to the boil. Boil for approximately 5 minutes then remove the kippers and leave to cool.

*your veg should be chopped, eggs boiled, fish boiled and rice should be ready.

In a pan (i used a wok for more room for stirring) add the butter or your choice of oil and let it heat.

Toss in the onion garlic ginger and stir fry for a couple of minutes until the onion becomes translucent. Add the chopped tomatoes and mushrooms and any other vegetables that you may have decided to add (frozen peas, corn, pepper) and stir fry on a high heat. Keep everything moving preventing it sticking to the pan.

Curry powder and mustard seeds are added in next (mustard seeds can pop out of the pan so just be careful) along with the chilli and continue to stir everything through.

The fish should be cool enough to handle. Break the fish up into small chunks (some people and some recipes call for removing the skin but that’s where the most flavours are) and add the fish to the pan.

Lastly add in the cooked rice and stir everything through. The curry powder should start to colour things a nice golden colour and when mixing through try to share this colouring and flavouring with as much of the mix as possible.

Lower the heat and leave for a few moments.

Peel and cut the eggs into quarters ready to place on the plate.

Serve up the kedgeree into bowls and add the chopped egg and parsley garnish.

Salt and pepper are optional but I find that the strong flavours of the fish and the curry powder are seasoning enough but it all depends on your taste buds.

If kippers are too strong in flavour this can be made with mackerel or any other fish that you have a preference for. Give it a go for a quick and easy week night meal and make more than needed and it can be a decent lunch for the next day although it may stink out the office microwave and you may not be popular 🙂


Hearty home-made soup – gammon, lentils and vegetables galore.

When i was growing up we would often make the journey to my grans at the other end of Glasgow and more often than not it was cold, windy and raining and by the time we got there we would be frozen and soaked through. On the upside, we got to see family and we knew there would always be a massive bowl of homemade soup, a doorstop of bread slathered in butter for dunking and the thought of this warming me from the inside out made the journey worth it.

Hearty home-made soup - gammon, lentils and vegetables galore.
Hearty home-made soup – gammon, lentils and vegetables galore.

This Christmas my parents came to stay in Bristol and so I thought it would be ideal to make homemade soup although I was concerned that it wouldn’t turn out as good as my mums and that she would be full of criticism. Luckily it turned out better than hers and she was full of praise – and soup. So I thought that whilst its cold, damp and miserable outside that I would make this soup on a more regular basis to enjoy. The recipe is below and ingredients can be swapped in or out as per your preference.


1 gammon joint – i decided to use smoked as i wanted the flavour.

Root vegetables – i bought a winter pack for £1 from Sainsburys and it included:

2 carrots grated or finely chopped

1 turnip grated or finely chopped

1 parsnip grated or finely chopped

1 onion finely chopped

I leek finely chopped

1.5 litres of water

1 500g pack of dried pea and barley soup mix – you could use lentils

15-20 black peppercorns

3 bay leaves (fresh or dried)

Pinch of:

Salt, white pepper, thyme and oregano – use any herbs that take your fancy to give the soup some extra flavour.


Place the gammon joint in a large pan and fill the pan with the water until it covers the gammon joint. Add in all spices/herbs and bring to the boil.

Once the pot is boiling reduce the heat to low so that the pot remains on a gentle simmer. Allow this to simmer for 1-2 hours so that the flavours of the meat and herbs are extracted into the water. Top up with water as necessary.

Whilst this is simmering i prepare the vegetables by washing them and cutting of any ends or nasty looking bits.

Use the grater attachment in a food processor or if you are looking for a bit of a workout then get out your traditional grater and get ready to work those arms.

Grate the vegetables that you have selected (you could add in potatoes, brocolli, frozen veg, celariac – anything that takes your fancy).

Place the dried soup mix in a bowl and cover with cold water rinsing any dust from the soup mix. I usually rinse it through 2 or 3 times.

Once the meat has been simmering for 1-2 hours remove it from the pot and you should be left with stock that is pretty well flavoured. Leave the meat aside to cool down.

Skim any foam from the top of the stock and then add the vegetables to the simmering water. Add in the soup mix and then leave to simmer for about 20-30 minutes checking that the dried peas and any larger pieces of vegetables have softened.

You can top up the water levels as and when necessary but I try not to top it up too much as I like my soup to be quite thick in consistency.

Whilst the soup is simmering shred the meat into small pieces that you can then add to the soup. I generally do this by cutting the meat into bite sized chunks and then pulsing these chunks in a processor just to get them to a finer consistency. You could always cut the meat into larger chunks depending on your preferences.

Taste and season with salt and pepper.

The soup is then ready to serve with a chunk of rustic bread and butter or with some crackers such as ryvita.

If you put your remaining soup in a container and store in the fridge the flavours continue to develop and make it even tastier but it rarely lasts long in our house as it tastes so good.

Let me know what tweaks and edits you make to this recipe to make it even tastier. Enjoy!


English: Lentils soup.
English: Lentils soup. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Dumplings for Chinese New Year

well its Chinese New Year’s eve today and all over the world there will be many people preparing lavish feasts of extravagant foods that are for special occasions, rich in flavour and that symbolise good luck and good fortune hopefully for the year to come.

tomorrow marks the start of the year of the rooster and this evening families will be together eating, drinking, chatting, exchanging gifts and money, setting off fireworks and watching the new years gala show on tv whilst continually eating snacking and enjoying the biggest meal of the year.

People will eat fish (Yu) as the pronunciation is similar to the pronunciation for the word prosperity, people will eat lots of round shaped food as they look like coins, and people will also eat rice cakes (nian gao) as the word nian is the same pronunciation as the word year.

Dumplings are always eaten at new year, particularly in northern China as the shape of the dumpling reminds people of traditional coin purses. Kitchens all over North China will be boiling steaming and frying plate after plate of dumplings filled with meat, seafood and vegetables to share with people popping in to wish each other a happy new year.

Last Wednesday was Burn’s night – a festival in Scotland and so in our house we decided to experiment and incorporate Scottish and Chinese cultures. We made haggis dumplings and I have to say they were delicious and they will most definitely be getting made more often in our house.

Since we were coming home from work and didn’t have much time to cook we bought the dumpling wrappers and the haggis so that we could assemble and cook and then eat. We added some grated carrot so that we could have one of our 5 a day and to add some texture and flavour. We got wrappers from the Chinese supermarket in Bristol and we bought Simon Howie Haggis in a bag I was hungry and impatient so the fact that we were able to do this was a bonus. Wrapping dumplings is a skill that takes time to perfect and I did need help with this. We also opted for frying the dumplings rather than steaming or boiling as this gives the dumplings a crispy outside skin that is just tasty.

If you are keen to make your own dumplings and want the easy option first of all then give this a go.


Dumpling wrappers they are ready rolled and quite cheap from asian supermarkets

one pack of haggis we got ours at Sainsbury’s

2 carrots either grated or finely chopped.

some water to dip fingers in to stick the wrappers closed.

groundnut oil for frying the dumplings

sesame seeds if you want to add some additional flavour


  1. Think of a production line in a factory for your dumpling making as it’s a process that’s quite repetitive and therapeutic.
  2. in a large bowl empty out the haggis and add the chopped or grated carrot and mix the ingredients together. If you are not a fan of carrot feel free to add any other vegetables that are finely grated or chopped. you are welcome to add any herbs or spices here but I didn’t as the haggis has a strong enough taste to it. Consider cumin, garlic, ginger, chilli, 5 spice.
  3. Prepare a large oven tray, plate, chopping board so that you can lay out the completed dumplings one by one so that they don’t stick together.
  4. Prepare a small bowl of water so that you can dip your fingers in the water and use this to stick the dumplings together.
  5. Place a dumpling wrapper in your less active hand and take a small spoonful of the filling and place it on the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over and wet your fingers to stick the edges of the wrapper together. press the edges rightly together so that the contents dont escape.
  6. Repeat this over and over until the wrappers and filling are completely used up.
  7. Now you are ready to begin cooking the dumplings. we fried them to make guotie.
  8. heat a flat bottom frying pan (make sure its a pan with a lid) over a full heat and add some water. Let the water come to the boil and add some oil and mix it through the water. Sprinkle some sesame seeds if you want these to form a crispy base on the dumplings.
  9. Lay your dumplings in rows in the pan and put the lid on turning the heat down to a medium heat. The water will allow the dumplings to steam cook and soften before developing a crispy base.
  10. Watch the pan as the dumplings cook and you will see the steam escape the pan. You are watching for the steam to diminish. This should show that the dumplings are close to being cooked.
  11. Take the lid off and check the dumplings to see that the base is beginning to crisp up. Feel free to alter the heat if you feel it’s too high.
  12. Once the base is cooked dark and crisp enough to your liking remove this batch of dumplings to a plate to cool.
  13. Clean the pan and start again until all dumplings are cooked.
  14. If you don’t want to cook all dumplings you can lay them out on a tray and cover them with foil and then gently place them flat in the freezer.
  15. Serve the dumplings with a variety of dipping sauces from soy sauce and Chinese vinegar, to sriraccha, lao gan ma Chinese chilli sauce, peanut butter and oil to make a satay style dipping sauce.
  16. And Enjoy.

You can also experiment with the filings from pork to beef to vegetables and tofu or a mix of all.


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amazingly authentic mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐

Having spent a number of years in china and developing a definite love of anything hot.

and spicy, Sichuan food is something that the UK restaurants can’t even come close to getting right. One dish i used to always get when it was cold and/or rainy is mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐 and yesterday the weather was crap and i craved it like you wouldn’t believe. Many places in china make it with a lot of oil but this version uses 2 tbsp of oil and still tastes pretty authentic.

mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐
mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐

According to Elaine from her blog, the story behind the name of this dish comes from a long time ago in Sichuan province, China. There was a couple who owned a small restaurant predominantly making vegetarian dishes and some of their customers wanted to have some meat with their meals. Meat was expensive but the owner’s wife bought some minced beef and put this through her tofu dish. The wife had bad acne marked face ma-麻 in Chinese and her customers named the dish after her: mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐. Not the nicest way to have a dish named after you but its a cute story and tastes great.

My recipe comes from Ching He Huang and Ken Hom‘s cookbook ‘Exploring China‘ as I love the dishes from this book. they are as close as i can get to real chinese food. I have increased the number of chillies that I use as I love hot food. Give this a go and tweak it to suit your taste and then let me know how you get on.

just remember – the key to chinese cooking is have everything prepared and chopped in advance and then its easy to throw together into a fantastic meal.


  • 2 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic peeled, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp finely grated ginger
  • 2 red chillies chopped
  • 2 tbsp toasted Sichuan peppercorns gently warmed in a pan and then ground in a mortar and pestle
  • 300g minced beef – you can change this for Quorn mince, pork or turkey mince
  • 1tbsp shaoxing rice wine
  • 2tbsp chilli bean past
  • 400g firm tofu cut into dice-sized cubes
  • 75g edamame beans – i used frozen for the convenience
  • 200ml stock – i used chicken stock as it’s what i had at home
  • 1tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1tbsp cornflour mixed with 2tbsp cold water to form a paste
  • ground white pepper
  • 2 spring onions finely sliced for garnish.


  • heat groundnut oil in a wok over a high heat and when it starts to gently smoke add the garlic ginger and fresh chopped chillies.
  • stir fry for a few seconds until the aromas are released into the oil.
  • add the ground peppercorns and the beef (or your substitute) and stir together to brown the meat and let it absorb the flavours.
  • turn the heat down to medium and then add rice wine, chilli bean paste and mix well.
  • throw in the tofu and gently mix around in the pan trying your best not to break up the tofu.
  • its easy for the tour to turn to mush.
  • Add in the edamame and the stock and bring the contents of the wok to a gentle boil.
  • add the light soy sauce to season and taste as you season to ensure that you don’t over or under season.
  • Lastly stir in the cornflour water mix and watch as this helps to thicken the sauce and sprinkle some white pepper over the dish to flavour.
  • remove the wok from the heat and serve the dish in a bowl ready to share or simply gorge on yourself. best served with plain boiled rice.
  • try this once and I am sure you will be hooked and then you can experiment and adapt the recipe to suit your taste. Enjoy.




simple saag aloo – spinach and potato indian dish to die for

as with my previous post, these days, if its healthy, hearty and spicy then i want to be shovelling it in my gob. these wintry days in the uk are driving me to spice up my life through experimenting in the kitchen and exploring my cookbooks and pushing my chilli limits to the max.

growing up with a lot of irish influence in my family i can barely go a week without potatoes and adding flavour, texture and spice makes this my go to comfort food. if im honest, i have had this served on top of a baked potato – double totty!

simple saag aloo - vegan indian dish
simple saag aloo – vegan indian dish

so if you are looking for healthy flavoured easy food to enjoy during the week, and again the next day in your lunch box, or if you are looking to have something different to offer your veggie dinner guests then this is a dish that you have to try. the method is the same but the vegetables could be switched up using sweet potato, turnip, cauliflower, broccoli, mushrooms or even carrots.

ready ground spices are fine for this dish but if you have time and really want to taste the different depths of the spices then it is best to roast and grind your spices to use fresh. its worth the effort.


2tbsp oil – ground nut or vegetable oil (not olive oil as it doesn’t heat to the right temperature)

200g potatoes cubed (i don’t peel i just scrub clean)

1 small onion finely chopped

4 tomatoes chopped

2 large fistfuls of fresh spinach or other green leaves

2 red or green chillies chopped (vary this depending on your spice tolerance)

2cm of root ginger finely grated

1tsp black mustard seeds

1tsp ground cumin

1tsp ground coriander seeds

1 tsp garam masala

1/4tsp ground turmeric

1tsp sugar


  1. heat the oil in a pan that has a lid – the lid is vital for the next step!
  2. once the oil is smoking hot turn the heat to low, add the black mustard seeds and put the lid on the pan. the mustard seeds will pop in the hot oil and without a lid your kitchen will end up covered in tiny black dots and you may even get burned.
  3. after a couple of minutes then seeds should stop popping so you can carefully remove the lid.
  4. increase the heat and add the onion and potato and stir fry until lightly browned.
  5. add the ground spices – cumin, coriander, garam masala, turmeric and mix through the potatoes and onion.
  6. stir in the ginger, chopped tomatoes and chillies to the potato and onion in the pan and sprinkle over the sugar.
  7. add 150ml of water, increase the heat and bring the contents of the pan to the boil. reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the potatoes have softened but still hold their shape.
  8. season with a sprinkling of salt and pepper and stir through the spinach or other green leaves until they wilt and serve.

this dish can be served as part of a larger meal, with rice or naan and it can even be served as an accompaniment to roast chicken or a steamed piece of fish instead of boring old boiled potatoes.

Spice mixture Indian Garam Masala
Spice mixture Indian Garam Masala (Photo credit: Wikipedia)