Showing posts with label vegetarian. Show all posts
Showing posts with label vegetarian. Show all posts

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Green Bean & Potato Curry

Green Bean/Potato Curry
Originally uploaded by kitchen geeking

So two meals cooked by me. One day. Shocker of a the month for sure. Sorry for the photo, I left the camera in the office (which, yes, I KNOW is technically only two blocks away).

That 'stuff' on top of that rice was the product of my grocery trip earlier this week when I picked up the potato and said "I will cook you;" the green bean and said "You will grace my plate;" and then got home and realized the garam masala Momma D brought back from India would be the gluey, masala-y good ness that, along with some onion, garlic, ginger, chicken stock, milk, butter, salt, pepper, oil, and rice...would bind the two together like a geek and a "duct tape is the force" joke.

And for you folks that are a'feared of "curry," know two things...1) E texted when she saw the picture of dinner and said it would go great with Bud Light Clamato; and 2) watch this typing happen.

That's rice. And green beans. And potatoes. And garlic. And... And... GRAVY. (Sorry Chez, making the point for the greater good).

It's not some bizarre concoction. You really only have to get your head around two things. Garam Masala, which is kinda like the spice mix your grandma put together for the mulled cider, only savory instead of sweet. And ginger, which I BET you're not that scared of since you've had ginger/peach something in your life.

But most folks from the part of the world I call home get that combination of sauce and starch with some sort of veg from garden or market. Honestly, throwin' a pan-fried pork chop on top of this and calling it Indian Chops n' Gravy on Rice would not offend me in the slightest. And there's pork chops with rice and gravy on truck stop menus all up and down I-81 in the Shenandoah...

You readers? You see the theme forming here? Yeah, from the Super Pollo and Ravi Kabob posts?

Here at Ravi I was struck by being able to same the same thing about the black-eyed pea. I've slow-cooked mine for years with a ham hock and garlic/onion. These guys were slow-cooking theirs with cardamom and coriander and the same garlic/onion mix. So much more that we have in common; because I have to believe that some Southern dude in fatigues and some Afghan dude away from home are both remembering long-simmered greens and stewed black-eyed peas. Not getting too far out there, just sayin' I bet it happens a lot.

And now here in my own kitchen?

So many similar comforts, textures, starch/sauce combinations. All over the world.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Middle Eastern Football Sunday

Just to set the mood. You know, because at the beginning of the day these bottles were minding their own business, corks were sitting under shiny wrapper-stuff, oxygenation was not happening. But of course, there were six people at my apartment, and we were there all day eating and watching football. And some wine was consumed. I want y'all to know that no one drove after consuming too much wine, and that we were not each reaching for our own bottle. This was a 6 hour smorgashboard of Sunday.

It was, as DT and T both said, the best Sunday ever.

Of course, there may have been better Sundays in the past, and each of us may have a better Sunday exactly seven days from today. But for us, those lucky few who made it to my apartment (I was kinda there already), it was a Sunday that was perfect for mind, body, and soul.

I got to cook. A lot. Large pot of Moosewood's Middle-Eastern Chick Peas with Spinach over orzo. A triple batch of Martha Stewart's Lamb Kofta, and a heaping dollop of lemon/mint/garlic yoghurt sauce.I'll give you the recipe for the chick peas if you want. Pretty simply with onion, red pepper, cumin, coriander, chick peas, and spinach. You can get there in your mind if you work at it. You want measurements? Drop me an e-mail.

I really loved the kofta. It was a spice explosion with lamb. Can't beat that. Coriander, cumin, paprika, nutmeg, clove, cayenne, cinnamon. Damn. It blended so well together. And I hit the cooking time perfectly. Juicy, tender lamb with exotic, non-chain spices? AND pita? C'mon, it was heaven. Managed to get amazingly fresh flat-leaf parsley AND toast the pine nuts without burning more than three of four too.

We all loaded up our plates and grazed through the day. Later on there was espresso (Lavazza of course), homemade hot chocolate (from Chez's sister's x-mas gift to me), and wine as we checked out the new Terminator series, and laughed hysterically through Family Guy and American Dad.

DT went and picked up ice cream early on, so there was dessert too. Haagen Daas Triple Chocolate and Eddy's Samoa. That's right. There's Girl Scout Cookie ice cream. Chez screamed (literally) when DT pulled it out of the bag. We all just grabbed spoons and started passing cartons of ice cream around.

Neither DT nor T had to be at work today. I got to spend 3+ hours in the kitchen and make people happy. J got a nice dinner before heading in to the office. Chez got some couch time.

If perfect exists, today was it.

Monday, December 31, 2007

Curried Pea Dip

So simple. Four ingredients (plus salt) is all it takes to make a delicious little dip that will ensure that you are the second most talked about party-goer after the host. It won't upstage, but it will make you new pals. And the host will likely get the recipe by force before you leave the party.

I would not lie to you about this.

It originally came from Real Simple magazine several years ago. I think it was Real Simple. That sounds right. One of those urban, young, hipster mags that has things like room organizing for condo owners, home projects for the suburban twenty-something with 1,800 sq. ft. and a crib, and dips for Saturday evening ladies night parties. Take the scallions and rought chop them. Throw them into the food processor with some kosher salt and curry powder. Pour your thawed peas on top.

Now, a moment of your time. I have made this several dozen times over the past four years, so trust me. Thaw the peas. The consistency will be MUCH better. Put them in a collander in the sink for an hour. Get rid of the excess moisture.Pour a bit of olive oil over it all and lid up. Make sure you have the pour spout top on. Pulse a few times to get everything going and then turn the motor on while you drizzle in about 1/4 cup of olive oil (if you're making a family size order of peas with a full bunch of scallions, that is).

What you end up with is here. It's a creamy dip, the low-fat dieter's guacamole with curry. I even sprinkled a little bit of extra curry powder on top this time. Just a little bit of contrast, not too much extra flavor.

Veggies and chips are the flavor delivery vehicles for this job. Pita and bagel chips work best, followed by red and yellow peppers. The crispy chips with their salt really matches very well with the sweet, creamy peas and the bite of the curry powder.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Hot, Hot, Heat - The Dinner

Band's good too.

Ubiquity, stuff shot is your name.

There was, I realized, a subtle Christmas theme to this meal. Here, see the first evidence.

So, you take half that red onion and jalapeno and saute it like this.

While that's going, put the other half of the diced onion in the food processor with the spices and a dash of water.

Make pulp, not fiction.

Add it to the saute with another 1/4 cup of water to get all the pulp out of the processor.

Let that go until almost all of the liquid has evaporated.

Now's a good time to chop the cauliflower.

Add 1/2 cup more water to the pan, scrape anything off the bottom. Add the cauliflower, stir, cover, leave.

Stir a few times over the next 30 or so minutes until you have this.

Then add in Christmas Recipe Hint #2

Heat that through until you have this.

Oh. That other stuff on the plate?

What's that?

You didn't see that in the stuff?

Hah! You're clever.

It started like this.

It's one tub o' plain yoghurt, 5 small minced garlic cloves, about 4 T minced mint, the juice from two fatty lemons, salt, and pepper.

Stir that up and let it sit in the fridge for 30 minutes or more.

It's good right when you make it.

It's the bee's knees when you make it first, fridge it, and wait...


I added a few dashes of water to the cauliflower as it cooked. Looked to be getting dry. It was, but I was probably a 1/4 cup too heavy. It's not a crisis, but I'd use a slotted spoon next time if I thought there was still excess liquid in the pot.

I'll cut the cauliflower florets larger next time as well. I cut it to slightly larger than bite-sized and didn't account for the full 'fall-apartness' of the cauliflower. Not a crisis, but a correction for next time.

I seeded and removed the membrane from half of the jalapeno. I may leave it all in next time. The heat from the pepper was very mild in the finished dish.

Watch out when you take the lid off the processor/blender to pour the pulp into the saute pan. Dear, sweet, everloving onion wafting in the eye. Fantastic smell...from the other side of the room. Powerful stuff, my cooking.

Spicy Friday Night

I've been out of town for a few days, eating well, but not cooking. Here's how I'm getting back into the swing tonight.

Cauliflower Curry

Here's what Food & Wine said about the recipe in the January edition:

"Adventurous home cooks are looking to South Asia for inspiration. One fantastic guide is Indian-cooking expert Raghavan Iyer, whose 660 Curries is due out in March. This curry draws its lively flavors from cumin, coriander and hot green chile."

I, for one, am willing to be an adventurous home cook tonight.

  • 1 large red onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small jalapeño, thinly sliced
  • One 2-pound head of cauliflower, cut into 1-inch florets
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and diced
  • 2 tablespoons minced cilantro

  1. In a blender, puree half of the diced onion with the coriander and cumin seeds and 1/4 cup of the water.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the vegetable oil. Add the remaining diced onion and the jalapeño slices. Cook the vegetables over moderately high heat, stirring a few times, until the onion begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Scrape in the onion puree from the blender. Pour 1/4 cup of the water into the blender; swirl it around, then pour it into the skillet. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion sauce begins to stick to the bottom of the skillet and turn brown, about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in the remaining 1/2 cup of water, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Stir in the cauliflower and season with salt. Cover and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the cauliflower is tender, about 30 minutes. Stir in the diced tomato and the minced cilantro and cook until warmed through, about 1 minute. Serve.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Okay, so the picture's weak. It's a camera phone, I'm not Heidi.

The tabbouleh recipes at, the Food Network, and Cooking Light were all very similar. Different amounts of water to bulgur, different amounts of lemon juice, some without garlic (P-shah), some without scallions (on which commenters always said add, so i did). Suffice it to say, it's not Sahara's or Ali Baba's. Again, I'm not those guys. Hopefully Raya will think it's sufficiently far away from white guy cooking lebanese, and sufficiently close enough to good flavors. I think it's pretty damn tasty.

1 cup Bulgur (use about 1 1/2 cups boiling water)
1/2 cucumber, seeded and diced
4 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 bunches of parsley, finely chopped
4 lemons, juiced
3 small cloves of garlic, finely diced
1 small bunch of scallions, finely chopped (white and green, ain't no onion racists here)
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Add the boiling water to the bulgur in a bowl. Cover with plastic and let set for 30 mins.

Drain in a seive.

Add it into a bowl with all the other stuff.


Adjust the salt and lemon as needed.

Chill and serve.



Eat it already.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Quinoa Black Bean Salad

Here's the business if you want a) veg food, b) to blow away friends at a picnic labor day shindig, c) you want something different that's SHAZAAAAAAM.


1/3 C quinoa (health food stores, world's OLDEST grain, looks like couscous);
1 C water (you know what this is, right?);
1 t olive oil;
4 t fresh lime juice;
1/4 t cumin;
1/4 t corriander;
1 T chopped cilantro;
2 T minced scallions;
1 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained;
1 medium red onion, diced
2 C diced tomatoes (seeded);
1 C diced bell pepper;
2 t minced fresh green chiles;
salt and pepper to taste


cook the quinoa in the water until it's done (use broth if you like, flava ya' know?);

dice everything else up;

mix it together.


best if it can sit overnight.

i make about a double order, and i am (MUCHMUCHMUCH) heavier on the cumin and cilantro than they are (MUCH heavier).

props to the moosewood cookbook for the original. can't understand for the life of me why they DID NOT have red onion in there version. it's the bee's knees. you need the red onion.

Other bits to consider: I didn't have quinoa last weekend, but i did have chick peas, edamame, small red beans (not kidney, if i meant kidney i would have said kidney, i really don't like kidney all that much). so i made this with those things and no quinoa. i also omitted the green chilles, tomatoes, corriander, lime juice, and the green onions this time. still close, cilantro and cumin flavored bean and stuff salad with a little crunch.

diced carrots would be AWESOME in this.