I have always had two best friends. The Three Amigos, the trifecta, KFC (the initials stood for our rarely-used nicknames in middle school): they are two of the people I love most in the world and incidentally my two top likers on all of my Instagram posts. The three of us have been through middle school break-ups, family tribulations, and one wedding, and I continuously blown away by the smart, strong, funny women they have become. Growing up, weekends would typically find us convening at one or the other’s house, snacking on whatever our parents had leftover from dinners that week. We devoured unhealthy amounts of Pecan Sandies, tuna casserole, and, once college rolled around and alcohol entered the picture, drunkenly-microwaved quesadillas eaten sitting on the counter top, trying to stifle our giggles so our parents wouldn’t hear. It was one of these friends, whose family is Indian, who introduced me to the wondrous food culture of Indian cuisine and laid the foundation for my lifelong love affair with Indian cooking. When I asked the other day about some of her favorite Indian dishes, she gave me a list of foods almost entirely new to me (I know what you’re thinking…You uncultured swine!) and I ventured out to try one of the new challenges. The resulting recipe is the epitome of Indian comfort food and its fresh flavors make for an easy, healthy meal to whip up in a minute of weeknight desperation.
6 Tbsp tapioca pearls (I used instant because I do not have the patience to wait 5 hours for them to soak)
2 cups broth (your favorite variety)
1 pablano and 1 jalepeno pepper (or your favorite green chili)
1 1/2 cups peanuts
2 large potatoes
1/2 Tbsp cumin seeds
Salt, to taste
3 Tbsp ghee, butter, or olive oil
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 cup chopped cooked chicken breasts (optional)
Plain yogurt for serving
- Rinse tapioca pearls in a colander and combine them with broth in a bowl. Allow them to sit for several hours until they have puffed up and are translucent, or use instant tapioca or much faster results.
- Chop potatoes into 1/2 inch cubes. Heat ghee/oil in a medium saucepan and add potatoes. Cook on low/medium heat until they start to crisp up on the outside and get soft on the inside (approximately 10 minutes).
- Add cumin seeds to the potatoes.
- Chop peppers and add them in as well
- Grind 1/2 cup of peanuts until they become a fine powder and add that to the pot with the remainder of the whole peanuts.
- Add the juice of one large lime and salt, and stir in chicken. Add chopped cilantro immediately before turning off the heat.
- Serve topped with yogurt and extra cilantro.