Himalayan green fig sabji á la Stonehouse

With the chill set in already, this October is not going to see a second crop of ripe figs in Stonehouse. My young tree is full of small green fruit which I want to pick, so that the tree endures the winter with a better reserve of energy than if it keeps trying (and failing) to produce viable fruit. Luckily, unripe figs are delicious in a sabji (a mostly dry vegetable dish, which is not a curry). This is a Stonehouse style recipe for green fig sabji:


Trimming green figs

500 g. figs, prepared: To prepare, pick around 600g unripe figs. Top and tail by slicing off the stem and indentation on the top. Put the figs in boiling water for 5-20 minutes (boiling time depends on whether you like your vegetable al dente or very soft). Drain, and cut into eighths -roughly 1cm pieces.
3 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-2cm pieces.
1 medium sized onion. Chop half into 1cm pieces. Grind (liquidize) the remaining half.
3-4 cloves garlic, peeled and ground.
2cm green ginger, peeled and ground
2-3 ripe tomatoes (optional), preferably scrumptious beef tomatoes from your greenhouse, chopped into 1-2cm pieces
½ teaspoon whole cumin, lightly roasted and ground
4 whole cardamoms, soaked in a little water for 2 minutes and rough crushed
200ml thick coconut milk or coconut cream
50ml chilli oil, or sunflower oil with one or two dry red chillies heated in it until they turn brown and aromatic.


  1. Tip the cut figs, potatoes and onions into a wok with the chilli oil, plus the ground onion, garlic, ginger and cumin.
  2. Cover and cook on medium heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally so the vegetables don’t catch.
  3. Check whether the potatoes are soft. Cook for longer until they are soft.
  4. Add salt to taste to the mix, and add coconut milk and the cardamom.
  5. Cover and cook for 5 more minutes.
  6. Stir in the tomatoes (optional).
  7. Remove from heat and eat with chapattis or rice.
Green Fig Curry

How did yours turn out? Let us know in the comments below.