Green chile chicken and okra with two mustards

A couple of Madhur Jaffrey classics last night. The green chili chicken is a southern Indian dish from Kerala state, specifically from the Jewish community in Cochin. It was the dish served at Friday night supper, for the Sabbath. Despite the name it is not particularly spicy – the chiles lend it some bitterness. The other key ingredients are the typically Keralan kari leaves and, for sourness, tamarind that has been soaked and strained to form a paste. The chicken is braised, bone-in.

Okra with two mustards is a Bengalese dish, wonderfully piquant and tart. The two mustards are ground brown and yellow mustard seeds, which are used to form a sauce with turmeric, red chili powder, water and a couple of whole green chiles. The okra is stir-fried first in oil infused with nigella seed (kalonji), and then simmered in the sauce for ten minutes – it is crisp and intact this way. Here is the spice mixture for the okra:

I served these dishes with basmati rice, and for cooling purposes and textural contrast, cold onion and cucumber relishes.