Vegetable tarkari (Nepalese curry) recipe

DSC_0552Tarkari is a traditional curry served across Nepal and nearby regions of India and Bangladesh. It can be adapted to use any type of vegetables and usually features potatoes, cabbage, carrots and green beans or peas. It is a fairly simple curry that is not too spicy. The spices used in this dish are fairly run of the mill, however in this recipe I have used asafotedia (hing) – a commonly used flavour enhancer in Nepalese and Indian cooking – which might be harder to find. This is optional and not including it will not drastically affect the taste of your curry.

Tarkari was one of three main dishes that I served as part of a thali (mixed tray of dishes) at the supperclub I hosted in July 2015 to raise funds for the Nepal Earthquake Appeal. You can find more information on that, as well as links to other recipes from the night on another blog post.

Vegetable tarkari

  • Servings: 2
  • Print


  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2cm piece of fresh ginger, minced
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp ajwain seeds (lovage seeds) – optional
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 cups of chopped mixed vegetables e.g. cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, peas, courgette
  • salt to taste
  • fresh coriander to garnish (optional)


Heat the oil in a pan over a medium heat.

Add the onion and cook gently until it goes transparent. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 1-2 minutes, not allowing it to go brown.

Add the cumin, coriander, turmeric and ajwain and mix. Add your vegetables and tomatoes and mix until coated in spices. Add salt.

Cover and cook on a low heat until the vegetables are cooked, stirring occassionallly to ensure they are not stuck to the bottom of the pan. Depending on what vegetables you’ve used this should take around 20-30 minutes. If the vegetables start to stick add water 1 tbsp at a time.

Garnish with fresh coriander. Serve with rice or dal bhat. This is perfect accompanied by lemon or chilli pickle.




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