Masala Mamba with a Side of Kobe Aloo

Comics | April 15, 2016 | By

Scan0001Maybe it was the wonky sleep patterns brought on by jet lag. 

My husband and I just returned from a two week trip to Hong Kong and Japan only days ago (more on that next post!).

I was feeling loopier than usual and out of all the things to watch and feel emotional, I was feeling all the feels watching Kobe Bryant play the final game of his career. 

Let me preempt everything by saying I’m not a Lakers or Kobe fan. I’m not a fan of basketball, period. 

I have nothing against the sport but, prior to my linking up with my husband, the game never piqued my curiosity.

My husband, on the other hand, eats, sleeps, and breathes the NBA and unabashedly bleeds purple and yellow. He is a die-hard Lakers fan and more specifically, he’s a Kobe Bryant bhakta

He has an infectious love affair with the game, having played competitively in his previous life, it is still, and always will be, a passion of his. 

At this point, I have watched numerous games with my husband over the years. With his patience in answering all my questions, I now understand basketball or at the very least, I know the rules of the game. 

I wouldn’t say I’m a fan of the sport so much as I can, on a very rudimentary level, appreciate the skill, strategy, and athleticism the game demands. 

I say all this to point out that for someone like my husband,  so vested in the sport and in Kobe Bryant as living legend, Wednesday’s game was nothing short of a basketball fairy tale.

KOBZIt was the end of an era not only for the league but, for legions and legions of fans who have grown up with Kobe and have witnessed his highs and lows with unfledged support.

Safe to say, Kobe’s farewell game touched many on an emotional level. 

But even for someone such as myself, someone with zero investment in basketball, Kobe’s final game appeared bigger than life. 

To watch someone go out on such an unprecedented bang was certainly entertaining. Yet there was something beyond the theatrics of it all.

In a post game interview, Kobe said he was comfortable to walk away from basketball because no stone was left unturned.  

He said he gave his heart and soul to the game and could thus leave without doubt and regret because he had given it his all. And that, THAT sentiment is what stuck with me.  

To hear someone speak about living out their passion, for better or for worse, for two decades; for handing themselves over to their craft entirely so to speak is nothing short of inspirational. 

All that passion and commitment Kobe spoke of, well, what does that feel like? 

I mean, what would it look like if I were to give 110% to my craft? What would it look like to just keep at it and keep at it so much so that one feels there’s nothing more to do or give because they had laid it all out, put the best/most determined version of self out *there*?

What does that look like on the daily in terms of discipline, sacrifice, and commitment?

All this basketball, all this history, this legend – shit! Took me down the rabbit hole of questioning what, if any, legacy I’ll leave. 

I also realized I was having a mini existential crisis stirred by a man who had christened himself the Mamba. 

Oy vey.

And what do I do when I question? I cook!IMG_4131

Nothing fancy. My husband and I have been craving simple khana since we had eaten out so much on our tours abroad over the last few weeks. 

So the goal was simplicity AND to make something purple and yellow to commemorate Kobe’s retirement. 

But what could I make? Clearly answering that was more important than answering the other, bigger questions. 

And then it hit me: subji. A good, home cooked simple subji. I imagine even Kobe could benefit from some subji with a side of achaar after his whirlwind week. 

IMG_4033I opted to use purple Peruvian potatoes. They’re packed with antioxidants; in fact, they have 4 times more than their white or even red counterparts!

They’re also purple and I was keeping Lakers colors in mind because, umm, priorities?

Not wanting to self-indulge in thoughts of not leaving a legacy (gulp), I instead turned to the kitchen and ended up creating two yellow and purple dishes.

One is gobi (yellow!)-aloo (purple!) and the other is besan omelette (yellow!) with spicy mashed aloo (purple!).

She shoots, she scores! 

Existential crisis averted. For now. 


Serves 4
Gobi aloo becomes Kobi aloo as a lil farewell dish to a legend! With turmeric stained cauliflower and purple Peruvian potatoes, I bring you a classic dish inspired by Lakers colors!
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133 calories
15 g
0 g
8 g
3 g
1 g
154 g
331 g
3 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 133
Calories from Fat 67
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g
Saturated Fat 1g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 331mg
Total Carbohydrates 15g
Dietary Fiber 3g
Sugars 3g
Protein 3g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 1/2 head cauliflower, florets only
  2. 1/2 pound (about 7 pieces) purple Peruvian potatoes, quartered
  3. 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  4. 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  5. 1/2 white onion, sliced thin
  6. 3 garlic pods, minced
  7. 1 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  8. 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  9. 1 teaspoon fennel powder
  10. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  11. 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  12. 1/4 teaspoon ajwain powder
  1. Place cauliflower florets and potato pieces in a microwave-safe container. Cover with water and cook in microwave for 5 minutes. Drain water and keep aside.
  2. Heat oil in pan over medium to high heat. Add mustard seeds; once you hear them pop, add onions and garlic to pan,stir, and reduce heat/flame to medium. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until onions turn golden-brown.
  3. Add turmeric, cumin, fennel, salt, chili, and ajwain powders to the pan and stir with onions. Cook for 1 minute.
  4. Add cauliflower and potato to pan. Stir, making sure to coat vegetables evenly with spices. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes.
  5. Add 1/2 cup water to pan, cover, and cook for 10 to 11 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat, transfer to serving dish, and garnish with chopped fresh coriander leaves.
Sketchy Desi

 FullSizeRender (20)

Serves 4
What we have here is spicy gram flour-omelette with a side of textured mashed potatoes. Feel free to add more water to the batter for more of a dosa-like thinner omelette.
Write a review
343 calories
48 g
109 g
13 g
10 g
5 g
231 g
349 g
2 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 343
Calories from Fat 114
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
Saturated Fat 5g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 109mg
Sodium 349mg
Total Carbohydrates 48g
Dietary Fiber 3g
Sugars 2g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. Besan Omelette
  2. 1 cup besan flour
  3. 2 large eggs
  4. 1/2 white onion, grated
  5. 2-inch piece ginger, grated
  6. 3 garlic pods, minced
  7. 1/2 teaspoon ajwain powder
  8. 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  9. 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  10. 1/2 teaspoon fennel powder
  11. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  12. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  13. 1/2 cup water
  14. 1 to 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  15. Mashed Aloo
  16. 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  17. 1 tablespoon black mustard seeds
  18. 1 pound potatoes, quartered
  19. 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  20. 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  21. 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  22. 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  23. 1/4 teaspoon dried mint
  24. 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  25. 1/4 teaspoon ajwain powder
  26. 1/2 tablespoon ghee
  27. fresh mint for garnish (optional)
For the besan omelette
  1. Excluding the butter, mix all ingredients together with water to make a batter.
  2. Heat a griddle on high; melt about 1/4 tablespoon butter per omelette.
  3. Ladle approximately 4 ounces batter in the center of the skillet. Using the bottom of the ladle, spread batter outward in a circular motion.
  4. Leave the omelette to cook gradually, brushing more butter to the sides as needed. Once you see bubbles around the edges, use a spatula to loosen it from the griddle and flip.
  5. Continue making omelettes one at a time.
For the mashed aloo
  1. Heat a pan with oil. Once hot, add mustard seeds. Once you hear them pop, add potato. Stir and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add cumin, coriander, onion, garlic, mint, chili, and ajwain powders to the pan. Stir to ensure potatoes are coated evenly with spice mix.
  2. Sprinkle potatoes with water, cover, reduce heat/flame to medium and cook for 6 minutes.
  3. Uncover pan and using a fork or masher, mash potatoes gently, making sure to leave textured.
  4. Stir in ghee.
  5. Remove from heat, transfer to serving dish, and garnish with mint.
Sketchy Desi

 Want more Mamba? 

Inspired by the Bollywood golden oldie Kabhi Kabhi, I’ll soon be selling this image as prints and t-shirts so you can be a Bollywood baller!

Details forthcoming!

Image 17