Traditional Maldivian Egg Curry

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Maldivians love curries. This egg curry is mildly spiced and the use of desiccated coconut makes the curry thicker. However, if you find making the curry paste is hard, you can use a good  store bought roasted curry powder. I have cooked this curry a few times to fine tune the recipe. In Maldives, we have smoked tuna readily available and we tend to use some smoked tuna in most of our dishes. I have cooked this recipe without using the smoked tuna, and it turned out quite tasty as well. So for all my vegetarian friends who eat eggs this is a good curry to enjoy.

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Prep time:  30 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Serves 3-4

Ingredients

  • 6 hard boiled eggs, peeled, keep aside

For the curry paste

  • 3 tablespoons desiccated coconut
  • 3 green cardamom pods
  • 1×2 cm cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 dried red chillies, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the curry

  • 3 tablespoon coconut oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2×5 cm pandan leaf
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 vegetable stock powder
  • 2 fresh tomatoes, chopped 
  • Pinch of fenugreek seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced smoked tuna ( optional)
  • 4 tablespoons coconut milk powder dissolved in 1 and 1/2 cups of hot water

Method

  1. Place all the ingredients for the curry paste in a small non-stick fry pan.
  2. Over low to medium heat dry roast all the spices and the desiccated coconut, for a few minutes. Be careful not to burn the spices. 
  3. When it’s fragrant and the spices and the coconut are lightly toasted, take off heat.
  4. Pour into a small food processor. 
  5. Blend all of this, with 1/3 cup of water or enough water to help it blend into a smooth paste. 
  6. Keep aside.
  7. Heat the oil in a medium sized pan  over medium heat and fry the onion, ginger, garlic, pandan leaf, curry leaves and the vegetable stock powder until lightly golden brown. 
  8. Add the tomatoes, fenugreek seeds, salt  and the smoked tuna if using and fry for a minute or so.
  9.  Stir in the prepared curry paste and fry for few more minutes over low heat.
  10. Stir in the coconut milk.
  11. Cover and cook over medium heat for  10 – 12 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  12. Remove the lid and gently place the eggs in the curry.
  13. Cover and cook for 5 more minutes.
  14. Take off heat and serve with rice or rotis.
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