We recently tried a delicious Spicy Zanzibar Potatoes (or Mbatata ya Pilipili) recipe taken from the book A Taste Of Zanzibar: Chakula Kizuri by Zarina Jafferji. It was so delicious that I had to make it again right away. This time I gave it my Ama touch to really give it life. It’s not a vegan cook book but there are a number of great vegan dishes here.
Zanzibar, known as the spice Island, is off the coast of Tanzania in the Indian Ocean. It has a long history and influence from India as well as Arabia and this influence is seen in the food as well as the culture. The warm tropical climate and lush growing conditions are home to mangos, coconut, pineapple, papaya and bananas. The result is spicy and aromatic dishes made with seasonal fruits and vegetables, coconut, rice, cassava, sweet potatoes, beans etc.
I decided to add some more vegetables. I added chopped carrots and some peas. I used fresh tomatoes and garlic in the sauce and added some onions too. The result was a flavorful dish that is a perfect side dish. I’m sure it will be a regular at our table.
To start, wash and cut the potatoes in to bite sized pieces. Boil them along with the peas and carrots until soft but not mushy.
Meanwhile, chop the tomatoes, onions and garlic and sauté them in a bit of water for an oil free dish.
Then add the spices and cook until the tomatoes are softened and juicy. You can add water as needed.
Drain the potatoes and return to the pot. Pour the sauce over the potatoes and stir to mix.
Spicy Zanzibar Potatoes
- 1 pound potatoes
- 1 carrot
- ½ - 1 cup peas
- 1 onion
- 2 plum or Roma tomatoes
- 1 ½ tsp chopped garlic
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- lemon juice to taste
- pinch of sugar (optional)
- salt to taste
- chopped cilantro for garnish
- Wash potatoes and peel if desired (I left my with peels on)
- Cut the potatoes into small pieces.
- Add to pot of water
- Chop carrots and add to pot
- Add peas
- Boil until potatoes are done
- Meanwhile, chop onions and garlic
- Add to a sauce pan along with a bit of water
- Chop tomatoes and add them to the pan
- Add the dry spices
- Sauté until veggies are soft and the tomatoes are saucy.
- Add ¼ cup water if needed
- Drain the potatoes
- Add the sauce to the potatoes
- Add the salt, lemon juice and sugar
- Mix well
- Taste and adjust seasonings
- Garnish with cilantro
Give this recipe a try. I bet it will be hit with everyone at your table whether they are vegan or not!