Saag Aloo and Me Versus Van Gogh

Indian Entree



½ tablespoon black or brown mustard seeds or combination
3 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
2 green chiles
1 inch ginger root
1 medium onion
2 garlic cloves
1 tomato
1½ pounds potatoes
10 ounces spinach
½ teaspoon coriander
½ tablespoon garam masala
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup water

Serves 4. Takes 1 hour.


Seed and mince green chiles. Mince ginger and onion. Dice garlic cloves and tomato. Peel and cut potatoes into ½” cubes. Add ghee, potato, chile, ginger, onion, and garlic cloves to large pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion and garlic soften. Stir frequently. Add mustard seeds to second pan. Reduce heat to medium and toast for 2 minutes or until they splutter and pop. Stir frequently.

Add toasted mustard seeds, coriander, garam masala, pepper, salt, and water to pan with potato cubes. Cook at medium heat for 5 minutes. Add tomato. Reduce heat to low-medium and cook for 5 minutes or until liquid evaporates. Add spinach evenly over potato cubes. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes or until potato cubes are tender. Stir gently and just enough to prevent burning.


1) Look at these two still-life representations The one on the top was painted by Vincent van Gogh. Ponder on his distressing lack of accuracy. The one on the bottom was taken by me. Regale in its crisp definition. Which one would you rather own, I ask you?

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef


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