This green pepper recipe was a fluke find, many years back.  I was staring at some green peppers and feeling fed up, because I don’t like them.  But I had them and I needed to eat them. And not wasting food is, sometimes, just cracking on through.
Sometimes an unwanted food makes us creative though.  Happily the unpromising ‘Classic 1000 Curries’ is part of my cookbook stash.   I didn’t look at it for years because of the cover.  I know. Bad and judgemental .  The cover design is a grid of four pictures: two curries, one stack of pappudums and one pint of fizzy lager.
I looked at the book with curiosity, because it just seemed so unlikely.  I wanted it to be a crappy book.
Naturally, I was wrong.  The recipes are simple, tasty and easy to understand. There are so many in one book because it’s my kind of cooking: unfussy, getting something on the table.  I guess that there’s no author because the editor spoke to many people to get this wealth of recipes. Not every cookbook has to be a £26 hardbacked beauty to be useful.
This recipe to use your leftover green peppers doesn’t even need you to chop an onion.  I know! I guess it’s a Jain recipe, as followers of that religion do not eat onion or garlic.  I chose this recipe, and have repeated it, because we often have plain yoghurt in the fridge.  Leaving the pepper to rest in yoghurt takes away some of the bitterness, and makes a simple sauce.  I know it looks gross but, you know, try it!  (I thought of having a food blog called “brutti ma buoni” – Italian for ugly but delicious.  I will never be a food stylist …)
The whole spices are nice because of the crunch, but if you’ll never otherwise use them, use ground and just let them fry for about 30 seconds.

Green pepper poriyal

Serves 4
Adapted, barely, from ‘The Classic 1000 Indian Recipes’, Ed. Wendy Hobson

450g green peppers (before de-seeding; 400g after de-seeding)
2 tablespoons natural yoghurt (preferably full fat)
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
30 ml water
2 teaspoons curry powder

Sharp knife
Chopping board
Large frying pan
Lid for the pan
Wooden spoon

Optional tools
Measuring spoons

25 minutes prep
25 minutes cook


Chop the peppers into dice (aka sqaures), around 2cm
Stir the yoghurt into the peppers and leave to one side for 15 minutes

Pour the oil into the pan
Add the whole spices
When you hear the seeds pop, add the peppers, water and salt
Simmer for around 15 minutes, until the peppers are tender
Sprinkle with curry powder and leave to simmer for about 3 minutes
Serve with rice or as part of a bigger curry meal

Storage/further meals
Store in a lidded container, in the fridge, for up to 4 days

Got a question? Ingredient you need help with? Get in touch:

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