I realise this is going to sound like hyperbole, but I feel like my brain is melting from the sheer deliciousness of my supper, so I thought I'd better write it up before I forget.
You will need:
- Some potatoes (I used two medium-large ones, cooking for myself - I have a big appetite)
- Onion (I used two small, but one medium-large would be fine)
- Cashew nuts (I used a big handful of broken ones, which I can get cheaper from the Indian shop)
- Curry leaves (use fresh if you can get them - I swear to God they smell exactly like Heaven when they're fresh, but they're still lovely when they're dried so don't worry about it too much)
- Mustard seeds (your standard accompaniment to curry leaves)
- Cumin (the one spice I most hate to do without)
- Chilli powder (if you like chilli heat - any other source of this will do just fine)
- Oil (I used mustard oil, which probably helps, but don't worry about it too much)
And for the green bit:
- Spinach (half a bag for me, i.e. around 125g)
- Garlic (I think I used five cloves, but I'm a garlic fiend fighting off a cold)
- Sesame seeds (go with almost everything, but especially garlic)
- Mushrooms (three chestnut mushrooms for me, could use more, could use less, could even do without)
- More oil (not very much)
Dice the potatoes, and heat them quickly to soften them up for frying - I zapped mine in the microwave for five minutes, never let anyone tell you microwaves have no place in proper cooking. Boiling would also work, obviously, if that kind of thing is your bag. Or you can just fry them for a really long time.
Slice the onions finely, and heat the oil in a big frying pan or similar. It should be good and hot to begin with. Chuck in the cumin and mustard seeds, and then add the onions and curry leaves once the mustard seeds start to pop. Wilt the onions a bit before you stick the softened potatoes in there - if they're just starting to brown, that should be fine, but remember they'll need to stand up to the entire frying time of the potatoes.
When the potatoes have been in for a few minutes, turn the heat down to medium-low and add the cashews. If you're not into cashews, or you just don't have any, I'm sure sunflower seeds or sliced almonds would be fine. You should probably add something that's pleasantly nutty though, you'll be missing out if you don't.
The potatoes shouldn't need more than the occasional stir from this point on, so get chopping that garlic. Garlicky spinach is a thing of great joy, so I recommend not being too much of a wuss about how much garlic you use. I think it's best chopped up really finely, but honestly garlic is great however you cook it, so do what you like.
Add the remaining oil, sesame seeds and garlic to a saucepan on medium-low heat. Let them brown a little while you wash the spinach and then shake off the excess water. If you're feeling energetic you could also start on the mushrooms at this point.
Next you need to add the spinach to the saucepan - it'll look like loads of it, but soon it'll hardly take up any space at all, I can never get over how much spinach reduces and frankly I could probably have eaten the entire bag without any problem. After that the mushrooms should be finely sliced and added as soon as possible - neither spinach nor mushrooms take much cooking at all, but neither will be ruined by prolonged gentle simmering, either, so you could even add them the other way round, I can't see it making much difference. Probably best not to cover the pot, you don't want it all to be too soggy.
At this point you're really just waiting for the potatoes to get as brown and crispy as you like. I for one like my potatoes pretty damn crispy, so it took me a while. Watch that the cashew don't get burnt, they're quicker to cook than potatoes.
Serve with salt, maybe a bit of pepper. I had white pepper on the spinach, and chilli powder on the potatoes. A slice of lime wouldn't go amiss either, I should think, but I'm all out.
That's it. Enjoy!