Carrots, Peas and Potatoes with Dill

carrots with dill 01

At first I thought I should stay away from the normal and mundane. But I also know that more often than not I am looking for someone else’s normal and routine; something that will take the same-old-same-old out of my lunch and yet have the same simplicity and wholesomeness that comes from tradition; from generations of being tested in home-kitchens till perfect. Most of the ‘new’ dishes I have tried from other bloggers are what are obviously their everyday favourites.

So I present today the humble carrots and peas with dill. Dill (soa/soya ka saag) is another of our winter greens, but one that finds few none takers in this household. But I, fearlessly, feed them this dish at least a couple of time every winter, hoping it will grow on them. As for me – well – I simply love it.

This combination of vegetables is inspired from the UP Kayastha cuisine, though it is not a handed-down recipe. But then again, there is a pretty good chance, it is cooked exactly so in some Kayastha household. Relying very lightly on the ubiquitous north-Indian spice combination of cumin-heeng-turmeric- coriander powder-red chilli powder this dish rests on dill for the main flavouring. Dill is a somewhat strong herb but in this dish it mellows on account of the sweet carrots and peas. Be sure to use tender sweet peas and not those over-plumped lentil-ly kind. Indian carrots are also much sweeter and watery with a deep red colour; but at a pinch, you may use the orange English carrots.

Carrots, Peas, and Potatoes with Dill

carrots with dill 02

3 carrots, scraped and diced
1 potato, scrubbed and diced
1 C fresh/frozen peas (I am still using the peas I froze last winter)
2 C chopped dill
1 t cumin
1/2 t mustard seeds (optional)
a pinch of heeng
½ t turmeric
1 t coriander powder
½ t red chilli powder
3 t oil (if you want authentic UP, then mustard oil)

Heat oil to near-smoking in a heavy pan or karahi. Add the spices in the order listed. Stir to mix (just a few seconds) and drop in the diced carrots and potatoes. If using fresh peas, throw them in as well. (I was using thawed frozen ones, which don’t need much cooking, so I added these when the carrots and potatoes were almost done.) Add the salt, mix, turn the heat down, and cover. Let cook about 15 min. stirring occasionally. Add the chopped dill and mix well. Cover and cook another 5 min. or till the vegetables are done.

Best served with dal-roti or dal-chawal (rice), and a bowl of dahi (yoghurt). Yum. Home food, at its best. Yet again.

PS: WordPress now warns me everyday that I have used up 26% of my space. So there are going to be fewer (and smaller) pictures from now on 😦 Blogger is so much more generous; six times more generous, but it would not let me keep my blog name. And I just could not call my blog anything but.

20 thoughts on “Carrots, Peas and Potatoes with Dill

  1. Absolutely wonderful mele of veggies,very appropriate X’massy colors!:)) I will try this recipe,thanks Anita!

    Hey Asha. That’s right! I didn’t realize. Well, in that case, Ho Ho Ho!

  2. I bought my first bunch of dill just last week, and tasted it for the first time last night when I used it in a pulao. It surely is a very strong flavored herb, will try out your recipe next, have loads of it left.

    Restrained by a space limit is sad !! How about hosting the site yourself like Indira or Priya S&S ??

  3. Have never tried dill here and never seen dill in my hometown(India) I prefer these kind of healthy vegetablles with very little spices.

    Really!! I dint have this image uploading problems in wordpress before, infact I used to upload lots of photographs. Try reducing the resolution, usually its 250 or 300, u can reduce upto 72 but for a decent quality 150 is ok.

    Dill is very much local here in India! And people either love it or hate it – no middle grounders!

  4. Hey I nominated your blog under writing but the nomination never saw the light of day. I sent it in again today but who knows whether it will be taken into consideration.

    I’ve always wondered, is shepuchi bhaji the same as dill?

    Yes, Manisha – shepu it is! And TH hates it with passion!

    Thanks for the nomination. Your effort is what matters.

  5. Trupti: Try it. This dishis really simple and quick.
    Nabeela: Well,please share…! Fish and dill..? Hmm
    Jayakarthik: Healthy it is, with just a little oil and all the colourful veges.
    Padma: If you’ve never had dill, I think this is a good ‘introductory’ dish for dill!
    Krithika: Gingerly she says…’small batch’ 🙂 And maybe even halve the quantity of dill, if you like.
    Lakshmik: And now, after Dilip wrote about it, I want to try it in dal too.
    Dilip: As promised!

  6. Nice! Dill is used a lot by Maharashtrians i guess, but i’ve never picked it up…your recipe seems to be a good starting point. I nearly picked this up last time but kept it back – fear of the unknown!! I dint know wordpress has such low capacity – this is news.

    I never used it for the longest time…didn’t know what it tasted like, or what I could do with it, till I tasted it with carrots and peas in a friends lunch-box. And this is the only way I know…but plan to try with dal now that I have seen other recipes!

    …Just 50MB 😦

  7. Hi Anita,
    You are inspriring to try dill. Know it is a strong herb.Must give a try! Hey, it is the same problem for me too. 50 MB is not enough for us, foodbloggers.Let me know if you are swithcing to blogger and can retain the same title!

  8. I have not tried the recipe (yet!) but it sounds delicious. I am very fond of dill, but only know it as used in Northern European and Greek cooking. It always seems to go particularly well with fish and potatoes. Your recipe contains a much larger amount of dill than any recipes I know – I cant wait till I have tried this, but dill is not always easily obtainable here.
    Can you enlighten me about “UP Kayastha cuisine”, please?
    The very first Indian cookery book I possessed I bought at a book sale – a tiny volume on Hindu Cookery of the early fifties, with instructions like – “wash the rice and set it out to dry, keeping an eye open for the crows” or “do not be lazy and send your masala to the nearest curry mill to be ground – the flavour is better if you do it yourself”.
    Since then I have studied the Western books of Dharamyat Singh, Julie Sahni, Madhur Jaffrey and others – but it is much more interesting to find day-to-day “real” recipes like yours on the net!
    Thank you.

    Kayastha is one of the castes in the labyrinth of the Hindu Caste System. And, like any close-knit regional community, developed its own distinctive cuisine. I should find out more about their delicious food from my friend’s MIL!

  9. Hi,

    I came upon your site accidently. I loved it. I understand this recipe is a typical kayastha recipe though we always used fengreek leaves with carrots and no peas. But this combination seems interesting. I’ll try it tonight for dinner.


    I will be trying your version next!

  10. hi anita
    i tried this recipe by replacing dill with fresh methi leaves….and its wonderous…i will soon retry it with dill..thanks for sharing …no is best home food…yet again..

    Looks like you tried Shalini’s suggestion; I will too!

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