This is a true Westernized Chinese dish, combining basic ingredients – potatoes and curry – that are unusual in traditional Chinese cuisine. But, in a typical Chinese way, Joyce Wing would put together foods and seasonings that were at hand and create a substantial and inexpensive dish to be enjoyed by the whole family.
My friend Gordon Wing tells me that his mother did not add carrots or any other vegetables because she wanted the basic curry-potato blend to shine through. And she usually made the dish with beef or chicken, stir-fried separately and mixed in just before serving. In fact, the curry powder, potatoes and onions are all prepared sequentially, the point being to preserve their individuality and thus to enhance the varied tastes of the final ensemble.
Joyce Wing prefers to cook the potatoes until they begin to dissolve, so as to thicken the dish. And if the curry has lost some of its zest, her trick is to add some diced fresh chilli, a step she sometimes has to take.
Gordon and I argue about whether his hometown, Boston, has colder winters than my Chicago. But we do agree that this dish is perfect for a cold winter’s evening in any place.
Peel the potatoes and cut them into 2.5 cm (
Heat a wok or large frying pan over a high heat until it is hot. Swirl in
Meanwhile, mix the beef with the remaining
When the potatoes are cooked, stir in the beef and serve at once.
© 1998 Ken Hom. All rights reserved.