Everyday Indian Food
There’s a very nice woman who lives at the top of the hill.
She kindly left some of her glut of summer marrows (giant courgettes / zucchinis) out on the street for random hungry strangers to swipe up – guilt free.
I actually didn’t take the last lonely marrow on the street. As lovely as the sign was, it felt wrong to go up to the gate and not leave something behind in return. But, it got me in the mood for one of the simplest Indian dishes – Fenugreek and Coriander Marrow.
I went to a yoga ashram earlier this year, and marrow, gourd, pumpkin, and squashes of one sort or another was on the menu regularly. It makes for a great light meal – often served in the summer months when it’s just too darn hot to eat anything too rich or heavy. They’re a very nutritious vegetable too (vitamin A, C, K, and a few of those B’s!, potassium and magnesium).
So grab a potato peeler and get stripping back that thick skin.
The peeled marrow reveals a beautiful translucent shade of pistachio green, with delicate, slightly sticky green, droplets that begin to ooze out.
Slice the marrow in half to revel in those delicate off-white seeds.
Quarter them and you find the spongy soft centre.
Grab a spoon and scoop that centre out. If you’re feeling fancy you can dry out the seeds and eat them like pumpkin seeds apparently!
Once you’ve scooped out the spongy middles, you’re left with the outer shell… Chop into to 1-inch pieces, and rinse with water.
The spices are very easy for this dish.
(For small-medium marrow) I’ve got:
½ tsp. fenugreek seeds
½ tsp. coriander seeds
½ tsp. coriander powder
½ tsp. turmeric powder
Chilli powder – to taste
Salt – to taste (approx. ¾ tsp. for medium sized marrow)
I’m starting with fenugreek seeds.
There’s no other flavour like it, although it’s described as “nutty” I think it’s much richer and more pungent than that. Don’t be afraid of this though! It’s very often associated with a “curry” smell”.
Fenugreek seeds have huge health benefits too. But, don’t be too eager with them either – fenugreek seeds can create a bitter taste. Crush ½ teaspoon of fenugreek seeds with ½ teaspoon coriander seeds in a pestle and mortar.
Heat a pan with a little olive oil. Throw in the chopped marrow, and straight away add all the spices. Give it a mix to make sure all the marrow gets a coating of the spice. Keep on a low-medium heat.
The marrow is steam-cooked, so keep a lid on the pan. Keep adding a little water if the marrow sticks to the pan. Check every 5 minutes.
You’re waiting for the marrow chunks to really soften down – almost like cotton-wool balls! They’re ready when almost mushy. This should take at least 20 minutes.
This cooking time also gives a chance for the spices to cook and mix together. Lightly push a marrow chunk down with the back of a spoon – you shouldn’t see any white flesh, and there shouldn’t be any resistance. Squished squash.
When cooked add lots of chopped fresh coriander leaves.
Serve with flat bread or tortilla wrap.
Ideal with Red lentils for the ultimate yoga bunny meal.