This recipe holds a very special place in my heart. It’s another West Indian dish like channa that encourages breakfast ingredients for dinner and is a play on all five senses. But what makes it stand out is the memory of my extended family gathered together while egg curry with potato was cooking on the stove. Truly made for a crowd or big batches with plenty of leftovers, the process of cooking egg curry is how we cooked from the heart — a dish enjoyed with our hands, honouring my dad’s recipe, paired with my grandmother’s roti recipe. It’s our family’s version of a labour of love. And if there was ever a meal to bring us together, it’s this.
Excerpted from Eat With Us: Mindful Recipes to Make Every Meal an Experience by Philip Lago and Mystique Mattai. Copyright © 2021 Philip Lago and Mystique Mattai. Photography by Mystique Mattai. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.
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Cutting slits into the eggs allows them to soak up some of the curry sauce and prevents them from exploding while frying.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Using a slotted spoon, carefully lay the eggs in the water. Cook for 7 minutes, then immediately drain the water and transfer eggs to a large bowl of ice water. Crack each egg and return to the ice water. Once cool enough to handle, peel the eggs, rinse any bits of remaining shells off and place the eggs on a paper towel to dry.
Place the onion, garlic, scallions, thyme and Scotch bonnet in a food processor and blend until it forms a smooth, thick paste, adding a splash of water if necessary.
In a small bowl, combine curry powder, garam masala and geera, then set aside.
Heat 3 Tbsp of oil in a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once the oil begins to smoke, pour in the seasoning mixture. Fry for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant and starting to brown. Sprinkle in the spice mix and continue to fry, stirring frequently, for an additional 3 to 4 minutes. Add small splashes of water as the seasoning sticks the bottom of the pan to prevent it from burning.
Add the potatoes, season with salt and stir until coated in the curry. If the curry is sticking to the bottom of the pan, add a splash of chicken stock or water to loosen it. Lower the heat to medium and cover the pot for 5 minutes, stirring the potatoes halfway through. Stir in the tomato paste until combined, then pour in the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low, cover and cook until potatoes are fork-tender, about 10 minutes.
Heat a cast-iron skillet on medium-high, then pour in remaining oil. Ensure the eggs are completely dry, then cut four 1-inch lengthwise slits in each, just through the egg white, and place them in the oil. Fry the eggs for 2 to 3 minutes, turning occasionally, until browned and blistered on all sides. Using tongs, place the fried eggs into the curry and lightly boil, uncovered, until the curry has thickened to a gravy consistency, about 8 to 10 more minutes. Serve in a bowl with roti on the side.
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