Monday, February 18, 2013

IHCC: Out of India

With my old World of the East Vegetarian Cooking and the more recent Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian, as well as several other of Jaffrey's books, at hand, I was really spoiled for choice with this week's theme. Which to choose, which to choose? In the end, I found several recipes for kookoos, an Iranian kind of frittata or Spanish-style tortilla, in both books which sounded appealing. I finally settled on Shamsi Davis' Persian Egg and Potato Cake (Kookoo Seeb Zameeni) from World Vegetarian (p538).

This is actually a fairly easy dish to make and turned out better than other frittatas I've made in the past. While you're boiling a pair of potatoes, you sauté finely chopped onion and garlic. When these are soft, they're set aside. Unfortunately the recipe instructions never tell you what to do with this. I reread them several times and asked for my DH's fresh eyes to do the same. No luck.

When the potatoes are done, you peel them while they're still hot, then rice or mash them. Stir in four beaten eggs, salt and pepper, and some chives. I added the onions here.

Meanwhile more fat is heated in a non-stick skillet (I used a cast iron one) and the eggy potato mixture plopped in. It's cooked on low for 15 minutes, then popped under the broiler for a short time. Then you turn the kookoo over (I used a plate to help, but more agile people can manage to do this directly in the skillet) and cook it for another 5 minutes. Jaffrey says this can be served hot, at room temperature, or chilled. We had ours hot for dinner, followed by a salad. Looking forward to the rest for lunch one day soon. I expect this would make a nice starter, cut in thin wedges, or a luncheon dish.

The recipe calls for a lot of fat (olive oil, olive oil and butter, or ghee), and I expect the amount for sautéing the onions could be cut by half, and the amount for cooking the kookoo could be cut by at least a third.

This post is shared with this week's I Heart Cooking Clubs.


  1. I love any potato dish and this one looks very appetising. But I think you're right about trying to cut the fat content. It would still taste good.

  2. I've also noticed the oil amounts are very high in MJ's recipes.

    This potato cake looks tasty.

  3. We love potatoes in our house, and these would be welcome anytime!

  4. World Vegetarian has way too many recipes because I seem to miss so many of them. How have I not found and made this one?! ;-) It looks like a perfect light lunch or dinner with a salad.

  5. That's one thing I'm really liking about World Vegetarian -- every time I pick it up, I find something else to make. It's funny because when I first got it, the book didn't appeal for some reason. It sat around on the shelf for a couple of years before I picked it up and had a good look-through. Now it's got lots of favorites and is a book I'll pick up when I'm wondering what to cook.