Recipe for dry mixed vegetable korma

A dry mixed vegetable dish that is easy to make, uses whatever is in the fridge and is loaded with flavours and nutrition. The dish combines different vegetables and is a good way to eat a number of vegetables at one meal.

What do you do with the small quantities of vegetables lying in the fridge? By the end of the week, I invariably have a few mushrooms and baby corn and half cut bell peppers lying in the refrigerator. I would have used them throughout the week in fillings for sandwiches or maybe in the egg on toast mixture that I made for breakfast or in a healthy salad that I served for dinner.

When I have a little of this and a little of that lying in the refrigerator, I rustle up this dry mixed vegetable korma. It is my way of putting all the vegetables to good use. And the outcome is delicious, if I may say so. What is nice about this dish is that it is colourful and pleasing to the eyes, there is a bouquet of flavours on the plate and it is has a high nutritional quotient. What more could you ask for in a meal?

Since the dish is prepared using whatever is there in the fridge, the list of the main ingredients is flexible. It is fine if you do not have bell peppers. You can add carrots or cauliflower and even paneer. The idea is to create a new version of the dish each time while maintaining the overall goodness.

On occasions, I have also added greens to this dish. A few spinach leaves and a few sprigs of dill go well. I like preparing this dish since it saves me the trouble of thinking of ways to meet the five-a-day target. This one dish does the trick. Five-a-day is the number of vegetables that nutritionist and fitness experts recommend we eat, in a day.

The secret of this dish lies in the masalas that are used. They impart a unique flavour to the dish. Try it with the veggies in your fridge or pick and choose vegetables of your choice. Either way, you have a winner.

mixed veggies

The ingredients are split into different groups -

Ingredients group 1

  • Garlic pods 8-10, finely chopped
  • Ginger paste - 1 tbsp.
  • Red chilli powder -1 tbsp.
  • Coriander powder – 1 tbsp.
  • Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp.
  • Cumin seeds – ¼ tsp.
  • Garam masala – ¼ tsp.
  • Salt to taste

Ingredients group 2

  • Fennel seeds – ½ tsp
  • Cumin seeds – ½ tsp.
  • Peppercorns – 12-14
  • Mustard seeds – ½ tsp.
  • Sesame seeds – 1 tbsp.
  • Carom seeds – ¼ tsp.
  • Curd – ½ cup or more.

Ingredients group 3

  • Oil for cooking
  • Onion – 1 large sliced
  • Tomatoes – 2 medium diced chopped
  • Bell peppers assorted about 2 cups diced into large pieces
  • Baby corn – 4-6 chopped into small pieces
  • Baby potatoes, whole if they are really small and cut into two if slightly large. Just wash and use, do n0t peel the skin
  • Green peas – ½ cup
  • You can add mushrooms, carrots, cauliflower, beans, paneer, spinach, dill etc., as per choice/availability
  • Drop in a handfull of raisins and fried cashewnuts to serve the dish at a dinner party. Alternatively, add some fried makhana, also known as lotus seeds and fox nuts and your guests will surely appreciate it.

mixed veggies1

Ingredient group 4

  • Chopped cilantro (Green coriander)
  • Chopped green chillies


Dry roast all the spices in group 2 and grind to a fine paste using curd and water.

Heat oil and add the cumin seeds to it. Once the seeds begin to splutter add the sliced onions and sauté on medium flame till they turn translucent. Add the tomatoes and cook until they turn mushy. Add the ginger and garlic and the rest of the masalas from group 1 along with a splash of water and fry till the oil separates.

Tip the masala paste (group 2) into the pan and fry again, until the oil separates.

mixed veggies2

Next add the potatoes, baby corn and peas to the pan and cook on medium flame until they are almost cooked. If you are using carrots and beans you need to add them now too. Add all the vegetables that take time to cook.

Once the veggies look almost done add the bell peppers. You do not need to cook these very long. They should retain their firmness. You can add the mushrooms and any other vegetables that cook quickly.

If you are adding spinach remember it will release water, so add it with the first set of veggies. Paneer can be added as it is cut into cubes or deep fried and soaked in water. You can also add soya nuggets or granules. Play around with the ingredients. Though I have never tried it, I think sprouts would go well in this dish.

Once the veggies are cooked garnish with chopped cilantro and slit green chillies and serve. This mixed vegetable korma can be served with plain curd and phulkas. It also pairs well with pooris and a simple moong dal khichri. I have served it in all these ways. The flavours complement the stark blandness of the accompaniments. The best part is that the flavours are not overpowering and you can taste the individual flavours of each vegetable, and yet you will experience a burst of flavours, with each bite. You can add some water to the masala to form a gravy, but do not make it too watery, that would ruin its taste.

Know your food

  • Peas are high in fibre, especially pectin, which is known to clean the arteries and keep cholesterol levels under control. It is also a good source of protein, and when it is served with a whole grain accompaniment their protein level gets a boost. They are a rich source of vitamin C, and a ½ cup of peas provide roughly 50% of the RDA. Peas also provide potassium and B vitamins, particularly B6, thiamine and folate. Peas also provide potassium which is an electrolyte that offsets the effect of sodium and keeps blood pressure in check. On the downside, peas have a high purine content and are therefore not recommended for individuals suffering from gout
  • Baby potatoes are starchy like their big brother, but they are not as bad as they are made out to be. When cooked with the skin they provide fibre and complex carbs. Potato skins are high in chlorogenic acid an anticancer agent. They are a good source of potassium, magnesium and some zinc. They also provide healthy amounts of vitamin c and B6
  • Baby corn is a starchy food that provides thiamine and folate. It also provides protein but is not a complete protein since it lacks two major amino acids. Combine corn with legumes and beans to make it a complete protein. It is rich in the antioxidant, lutein
  • Bell peppers are low-calorie vegetables with a very high quantity of vitamin C and beta carotene, as well as good amounts of folate, vitamin B6, and cancer-fighting bioflavonoids. They provide healthy amounts of antioxidants, namely zeaxanthin and lutein
  • Onions go in practically every dish, but did you know their health benefits? Onions have a high sulphur content and block carcinogens. They are known for their antibacterial property and are said to lower high BP and prevent blood clots. Some studies show that onions have an effect in lowering cholesterol levels and that they are a rich source of beta carotene and vitamin C
  • Tomatoes are low in calories and rich in potassium, beta carotene, vitamin C and folate. Tomatoes, especially when cooked, become powerful antioxidants.

Adding other veggies to this dish will enhance its flavours and nutrition levels. Doctors recommend that we eat at least five portions of fruits and vegetables a day. One portion is equal to around half a cup up of cooked vegetable. Eating the same vegetable in double or triple quantities does not count. You need to consume a variety of different vegetables.

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