Monday, 14 March 2011

Slow cooked Tamarind Vegetable Pot with cumin dumplings

For those of you into South Asian (Punjabi) cuisine you may be familiar with a snack dish called Gol Guppay (Guppe, Gappa) - puffed crispy pastry shells (puris) filled with tamarind flavoured chickpeas and potatoes (Channa and aloo chaat). Gol Guppay are also very similar to Pani Puri where the pastry shells are filled only with Tamarind water (Imli Pani). Well this recipe is kind of based on the Gol Guppay, but with a difference. I have slow cooked the ingredients resulting in a deep dark sauce like chocolate, but with the unmistakable savoury tang of tamarind. In place of the traditional crispy puri, I decided to make some British style dumplings, but again with a difference. These were flat dumplings studded with with flecks of cumin seeds. Oh they were light and airy as clouds.

I tell you if you've been feeling poorly; or a bit low and want your taste buds to awaken, well this dish will certainly do that- it will perk you up! I must point out though, as with most slow cooked dishes, this was much better the day after.

I am submitting this slow cooked Tamarind Vegetable Pot with its cumin dumplings to my dear blogger friend Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes. Jacqueline has recently acquired a Morphy Richards slow cooker and has been encouraging fellow bloggers to submit her with some vegetarian recipe ideas on how make the most of her slow cooker. She has called her challenge Slow Cooking. I hope she and her readers like my tangy vegan savoury dish, as much as I have.

By the way, this recipe was slow cooked in the oven, but it can easily be made in the slow cooker too.
Slow Cooked Tamarind Vegetable Pot with flat cumin dumplingsServes 4
For the slow cooked vegetable pot2 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, minced
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, freshly ground
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, freshly ground
2 – 3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 – 4 red chillies, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon of fresh ginger, grated
2 medium potatoes, cut into small cubes
1 - 2 pints vegetable stock*
1 - 1 ½ tablespoon tamarind paste or concentrate
4 medium carrots, sliced

1 x 400g canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Optional: 80g - 100g frozen peas
For the flat cumin dumplings100g self raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
50g vegetable suet
Salt to taste
Optional: fresh coriander to serve
For the slow cooked vegetable pot
In a wide pan, heat the oil, add the onions and cook until soft. Then add in all the spices, garlic, ginger and cook for a couple of minutes. Add in the potatoes and stock* and bring to a boil. Turn off heat. Now carefully transfer contents to a either a slow cooker or an oven proof casserole pot. Gently stir in the tamarind and carrots.
If cooking in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 6 – 8 hours. Or if cooking in an oven, Gas mark 4. In the last hour of cooking, stir in the chickpeas and peas and continue to cook until all the vegetables are tender. If using, stir in the chopped coriander.
For the cumin dumplingsAn hour before serving the dish (the same time you stir in the chickpeas and peas), make the dumplings. Sift the flour with the baking powder and sit in the cumin seeds, suet and salt. Stir in enough cold water to make a firm dough. Divide the mixture into eight balls and then gently press between your hands to gently flatten them. Arrange the dumplings on the top of the vegetables. Switch the slow cooker to high; or oven to Gas mark 6. Cover and cook for 40 minutes or until the dumplings are puffed up. Serve immediately.

*Optional: The stock can be reduced if you want a thicker sauce or kept to 2 pints if you want a thinner consistency, which would be excellent served over plain Basmati rice or couscous.


  1. Mmmmm .... this sounds delish! Thanks for sharing. Have a great week. Tammy

  2. I am constantly surprised by your inventiveness. Have you always been inventive?
    I kind of think that I should master cooking to some degree first by trying other people's recipes and then I will hopefully have the confidence to start inventing things for myself.

  3. I just had to check out your cumin dumplings, boy do they sound good;-) Actually the entire dish looks amazing.

  4. Thank you so much Mark.

    Thank you Tammy.

    Thanks Lou.
    When I was a kid I was quite creative artistically: drawings, making things from fabric...but something happened along the way and I lost that. My mother was a very creative cook and I guess I've inherited this creative streak from her. I've got better and more confident with time. Part of it is trusting myself with some flavour combinations, but I have still a long way to go.

    I think you are a very talented home baker, I especially love the look of your cakes.

  5. Thank you so much Patty.
    Tamarind is bit of an acquired taste. If you liek citrussy flavours, then I think people would liek this dish.


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