Mixed vegetable curry, as I know it growing up in South Africa, was synonymous with Porridge prayers (mariamman prayer). It is a medley of mixed vegetables with a characteristically sour taste from the combination of brinjal and tomatoes. It formed part of the trio of vegetable curries for the morning prayer – pumpkin curry ,cabbage curry and mixed curry to accompany sour porridge. The afternoon was followed by veda, gulgula , a soji lamp (maviliku) and chicken curry with rice and roti. Mixed curry itself varies according to family recipes. Amma‘s mixed curry was made from a combination of vegetables we loved to eat and those readily available from Amma’s garden at the time. Amadumbe (yams), brinjal, double beans, green beans, cauliflower, calabash and gathra beans. This vegetable curry can be made with any combination of vegetables and using frozen vegetables of choice too. For that authentic sour taste of Durban mix curry I recommend using brinjal and a little tomato. For a thick gravy I use onion, ginger and garlic. For a weeknight curry Amma often made mix curry with dry fish.
How to Make Mix Vegetable Curry
To make mix curry I recommend starting with washing and peeling all vegetables then slice into desired shape and size.The process of making a mix curry is no different form any other curry, except the order and cooking times may vary depending on the vegetable used. This results in perfect mixed curry rather than vegetable soup. For this recipe I have used calabash, cauliflower, yams, brinjal and tomato.
Start by frying the onions in oil then add ginger and garlic. Followed by fried spices and grated or finely chopped tomato. Once a thick sauce like texture forms add the vegetables according to cooking time required.
I added the yams first because they have a longer cooking time. After cooking for 15 minutes I added brinjal, which cooked a further 10 minutes before adding cauliflower and calabash.
This curry does require a considerable amount of water compared to meat curries, to allow the vegetables to cook soft. Once all vegetables are added, cook until soft and a thick gravy forms. Mixed curry can be enjoyed with soft roti or rice. It can be enjoyed as a vegetarian dish for Monday or vegetable accompaniment to dry meat curry like chicken chukka or mutton fry or enjoy with spicy mince kebabs.
What Spices to Use in Mix Curry
For this recipe i used Durban masala combined with dhania jeera powder.
How to Store Mix Curry
This curry can be stored in the fridge or frozen. Simply leave overnight in the fridge to defrost.
Mixed Vegetable Curry Recipe
Mixed Vegetable Curry Recipe SA
- 2 cups calabash
- 2 cups cauliflower
- 1 cup yams
- 2 cup brinjal
- 1 medium onion
- 1 small tomato
- 1 tablespoon ginger and garlic
- 2 tablespoons Durban Masala
- 1 tablespoon dhania jeera powder
- 1/4 cup oil
- 4 cups water
- Wash and prepare all vegetables.
- Slice onions fine. Fry on medium heat until slightly brown.
- Add powdered spice, fry for 2-3 minutes until the spice separates from the oil.
- Add chopped or grated tomato. Combine with powdered spice and oil.Fry for a minute or two.
- Add yams. Add a cup of water , allow to cook for 10 minutes or so before adding brinjal. Add more water as needed. Cover and allow to cook.
- Add the soft cooking vegetables like cauliflower and calabash later to avoid them overcooking.
- Once the vegetables are soft, remove the lid from the pot to allow excess water to evaporate leaving behind a thick gravy and perfect mix curry.
- Remove from heat. Serve warm with rice or roti.