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Appetizers, Desserts, Sides, Vegetarian

Watermelon curry (matira)

Watermelon curry (matira)
Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Last year I made a drop-dead Indian dinner: a lamb curry that took four hours to cook, a majestic pilaf full of toasted whole spices, a rich Moghul coconut-lime soup and a raft of fresh chutneys and side dishes. Everybody ... Read more

Total time: 20 minutes | Serves 2 to 4
  • 1/4 of a large watermelon
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground red pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon garlic puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar

Step 1Cut up the watermelon, remove the rind and seeds and chop the flesh into 1-inch cubes. (You'll need about 10 cups.)

Step 2Puree 1 cup of flesh to make juice. Add the paprika, ground red pepper, turmeric, coriander, garlic and salt to taste.

Step 3Heat the oil in a skillet over high heat and fry the cumin seeds 20 seconds. Immediately add the juice. Lower the heat and simmer until the liquid is reduced by one-third, about 5 minutes.

Step 4Add the lime juice and sugar to taste. Cook 1 minute. Add the watermelon pieces and cook over low heat 3 to 4 minutes, tossing to coat until heated through.

Note: Is it an appetizer, a salad, a side dish, a curry or dessert? From "The Great Curries of India" by Camellia Panjabi.


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