Harissa-spiced Marinated Potatoes with Cucumber-Dill Yogurt Sauce


Harissa Potatoes with Yogurt Sauce

Harissa Potatoes with Yogurt Sauce

I have one lovely recipe for marinated baked potatoes on here, which my sister gave me. I thought it time for another. This one’s a little different. For starters, it’s crusted in panko breadcrumbs. Also, it’s spiced with harissa. I bought my harissa, but you can make it if you like. I’ve seen recipes out there on the net. Warning! This recipe calls for 8-10 hours marination time. Also, harissa is super spicy. Taste it before you use it.

The low-fat buttermilk in this recipe is what you get in the US in cartons. If you’re in India, use 2 tbsp sour curds (yogurt) mixed with 2/3 cup warm water instead. The yogurt sauce is essentially a variation on cucumber raita.

You need:

  1. 4-5 small potatoes
  2. 1 tbsp harissa paste
  3. 1 cup low-fat buttermilk, room temperature
  4. 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  5. salt to taste (I didn’t add any)

For the sauce:

  1. 1 cup thick yogurt (ideally Greek yogurt)
  2. 1 tbsp finely chopped dill
  3. 1/4 cup finely chopped English cucumber
  4. salt to taste
Harissa paste and buttermilk

Harissa and buttermilk

How to:

  1. First, mix all the ingredients for the yogurt sauce together, cover, and put it in the fridge. 
  2. Parboil the potatoes. Don’t let them get mushy. Cool in cold water and ice.
  3. Peel the potatoes and if they are not small, cut them in half.
  4. Pierce with a fork.
  5. In a bowl big enough to hold the potatoes, mix the buttermilk and harissa paste. Whisk together.
  6. Place the peeled potatoes in this mixture.
  7. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8-10 hours. Overnight is good, 24 hours even better. potatoes in buttermilk mixture
  8. Take the potatoes out of the fridge after 8-10 hours.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  10. Place the panko breadcrumbs in a plate.
  11. Gently stir the buttermilk to make sure the potatoes are well coated with it, then lift out, shake gently, and roll in the panko.
  12. Cover well with the panko, then place the potatoes on a foil lined, oil sprayed baking dish.
  13. Cook uncovered in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the panko starts to brown.
  14. When it starts to brown, turn on the broiler and broil for a few minutes on each side for a nice browning. Be careful, as the panko can burn very fast. You have to watch it constantly.
  15. Remove from the oven and serve with chilled yogurt sauce.

Dilled Celery Root and Potatoes

Celery root is an ugly, gnarly-looking root vegetable. It tastes like celery, although the root and stalks are not cultivated from the same varieties. It’s tasty, lower carb than potatoes, and you can eat it either raw or cooked. This recipe calls for cooking. Remember, you have to cut away the peel, so you won’t get much out of each root. Buy the smaller ones with fresh green tops, no slime, and they should not be green.

You need:

  1. 1 celery root, chopped into 1/4″ pieces (see note)
  2. 2 medium-sized potatoes like Yukon Gold, chopped into 1/4″ pieces
  3. 3/4 cup vegetable stock (you can use water if you don’t have any broth or stock)
  4. 1 tbsp finely chopped dill
  5. 4-5 green onions
  6. Salt to taste
  7. A pinch of Chinese five spice (optional)

How to:

  1. Cut the green leafy parts off the green onions. Chop the whites finely (remember to discard the root end).
  2. Heat a little oil in a non-stick pan. (I use Cuisinart’s hard anodized cookware and don’t actually need the oil).
  3. Add the chopped onions (white parts only) and cook for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add the celery root and potatoes and stir.
  5. Add the salt and five spice and stir.
  6. When it starts to stick to the bottom, add the stock or water and stir well. Be careful not to break the vegetables.
  7. Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender but not mushy.
  8. While it it cooking, finely chop the onion greens and the dill. Do not cut the dill up too much, as it will then lose its smell.
  9. Once the vegetables are tender, add the onion greens and dill and stir. Take off the heat.

You can eat this over rice, with chapattis, or stuffed into a pita. I ate it just by itself, with some yogurt.

Note: To prepare celery root, wash it well. Scrub with a vegetable brush. Cut off the top and root ends, about 1/2″ on each side. Using a sharp knife, cut away the peel. You could use a peeler, but it might be more difficult. Rinse, wipe dry, and now it’s ready to use. It’s a little tough to cut, so be careful.


Savory Cornbread Muffins

I love cornbread. It has such an excellent taste, and then, when you top it with golden, slightly-melted butter, it’s ambrosia! I still had some dill leftover from when I made the Poppyseed/Dill Kohlrabi, and we bought some hot banana peppers at the Farmer’s Market. So here are two kinds of savory muffins. I adapted the cornbread recipe from Mollie Katzen’s Moosewood Cookbook.

For the cornbread:

You need: 1/2 cup all-purpose flour; 1/2 cup coarse cornmeal, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp baking soda; 1/4 tsp salt; 1 egg white; 1 cup yogurt; 1 tbsp honey; 1.5 tbsp melted butter.

How to:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients well.
  3. Mix the wet ingredients together in a separate bowl.
  4. When you are ready, add the wet ingredients to the dry ones, and mix just enough to combine well. Do not stir aggressively.
  5. Pour into a greased muffin pan or square baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or until a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  6. If you are pouring into a muffin pan, do not fill the cups more than halfway.

Dill and Hot Banana Pepper Muffins:

  1. Proceed to prepare the cornbread as above, but do not mix wet and dry yet.
  2. Add 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill and 2 very finely chopped hot banana peppers (or jalapeno, or whatever hot peppers you like) to the dry ingredients.
  3. Add the wet ingredients, mix as above, and bake for 20-22 minutes.

Celery and Onion “Stuffin’ Muffins”:

A variation on a traditional holiday stuffing.

  1. Finely chop one stick of celery (or two) and one small red onion.
  2. Add 1 tsp butter + 1/4 tsp oil to a pan. When hot, add the onion.
  3. When the onion is pink and translucent, add the celery.
  4. Cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Prepare cornbread mixes, keeping wet and dry separate.
  6. Add the celery and onion to the dry mix.
  7. Add the wet ingredients and mix well as above in the cornbread recipe.
  8. Bake in a hot 350F oven for 20-22 minutes as above in the cornbread recipe.

Kohlrabi with Poppyseed and Dill

I’m always game for trying new ways to cook kohlrabi (knol-khol), which I absolutely adore. And then I thought…marry it with dill! A match made in heaven! As you probably gathered, dill is another one of my favorites. Do try it and let me know what you think.

You need:

5-6 small kohlrabi; 1 small red onion; 1 tbsp poppyseed (khus-khus); 1/4 cup finely chopped dill; 1 small tomato (red).

How to:

  1. Finely chop the onion and tomato.
  2. Dice the kohlrabi.
  3. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a kadahi or wok.
  4. Add the onions. Cook until they are pink and translucent, on medium heat.
  5. Add the poppyseed and stir well.
  6. Add the kohlrabi and stir. Then add 1/4 cup water, stir and cover.
  7. Cook until the kohlrabi is cooked, but not soft (about 10 minutes or less). The easiest way to figure this out is to taste it when it is raw. If it still tastes raw, then it is 🙂
  8. Turn off the heat. Add salt and stir well.
  9. Add the tomatoes and stir.
  10. Add the dill and stir again.