On our first night in KL we decided to eat at an Indian restaurant that specialised in Southern Indian food as it's often vegan and gluten free. The restaurant Annapuurnam was within walking distance of our hotel, the staff were cool and really coeliac friendly. As a definite bonus the food was delicious and we made disgusting pigs of ourselves and ate way too much.
When we came home we decided to make our version of our favourite dish. It's really easy but you will need to buy some curry leaves from an Asian deli.
Chop and partially cook about 6 large potatoes in boiling water. When they're almost done, add half a head of cauliflower that you've chopped into bite sized pieces and keep on boiling until both are cooked. Don't cook them too much or they'll turn to mush. Drain and set aside.
In a big pan or a wok, fry an onion and two chopped carrots in a couple of tablespoons of whatever oil you've got in your pantry. (We don't bother with coconut oil because it tastes too much like tanning lotion and gives me flashbacks to the 1980's.) Throw in some mustard seeds – about a tablespoon, star anise, a cinnamon stick, a bay leaf, two dried chillies, a few cardamon pods and a couple of cloves. When that smells really good add in a tablespoon or so of cumin and coriander powder, some tumeric, black pepper and about two sprigs of the curry leaves that you've stripped and roughly chopped. Spices burn really easily so keep a bit of water by the pan and throw some in if you think it's getting too hot. Trust me, don't throw in some of your gin and tonic, it doesn't really affect the taste of the dish, but you'll miss your drink when it's gone.
You could serve this with a green salad or you could just gorge on it like we do, served over rice. The children, who are culinary heathens, eat this with soy sauce and more black pepper. You could add more chilli or some chopped coriander – whatever floats your boat.