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Christopher Greaves

Curries

Saturday, November 08, 2008

So this good friend gives me a recipe for curried cauliflower:

Curried Lentils, Sweet Potato and Cauliflower
l large onion, roughly chopped
3 TBSP. (45 mL) Indian curry paste (mild or Madras) (or whatever you like)
10 cardamom pods
2 medium sweet potatoes, about 1 lb. (500 g), peeled and cut into 1/2 inch (1 cm) pieces (I used 3)
3/4 cup (175 mL) (I used a whole can) green or brown lentils, rinsed
2 cups (500 mL) vegetable broth (I used chicken stock as I added cooked chicken)
5 cups (1.25 L) cauliflower florets
1/4 cup (60mL) fresh coriander leaves (I used parsley)
salt & pepper
plain yogurt, optional
Method:
Heat a large, heavy saucepan over medium-low heat.† Add onion and curry paste, stirring paste thoroughly into onion.† Cook, stirring constantly for 2 to 3 minutes.
To remove seeds from cardamom pods, smash pods with a large knife or meat mallet.† Remove the small brown seeds (discard pods) and stir into onion mixture along with sweet potatoes.† Cook another 2 to 3 minutes.
Stir in lentils and broth, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat.† Reduce heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes.† Add cauliflower and return to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 8 to 10 minutes or until lentils and vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.† Remove from heat, stir in coriander, and season to taste with salt and pepper.† Let stand a few minutes before serving.† Serve with a dollop of yogurt, if desired.† (I desired and it really adds flavor!!!)

I had onions, a bag of them. I had curry powder, but not paste, but I have chicken stock (from yesterday!). No cardamom pods, although Brunos across the street might have some. No sweet potatoes, but Iíve a bag of regular white, plus a large jar of sugar (!), and so on.

I bought a cauliflower and had a few florets with my supper last night.

Whatís a fellow to do but chop the onion, cauliflower, potatoes, even, yes, the cauliflower leaves and stalk. The lot. Three soupspoons of curry powder, one of ground black pepper, one of salt. A soupspoon of some yellow powder (not curry!) in an unlabeled jar. Plus some ľ inch cubes of frying steak that Bill didnít eat when he didnít drop by for supper Thursday night.

Toss the chicken stock into my dixie and bring it to the boil, then toss in the solids, turn down the heat and simmer for two hours.

Turn it off and go to bed.

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In the morning, bring it gently back to the boil, and ladle it out into thirteen of those weight-watchers entree trays, a gift from another friend (a Second Use For Everything !).

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Mmm! Looking good.

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The strained chicken/vegetable/curry stock goes back into the dixie ...

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... which goes back onto the stove on HIGH and is brought quickly to the boil again.

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I figure a half cup of Basmati rice will make two half cups when cooked, so 6 half-cups of rice go into a beaker on standby.

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Here we are waiting for the stock to re-boil, then into the dixie with it, turn down the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.

Thatís a lot of rice (for me).

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The rice is almost cooked; I like to bring it up shy of ďcookedĒ because Iím going to microwave the dish later on.

I strain the rice into a bowl of stock, and replace the dixie on the stove for a few minutes at low heat while I ...

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What did you expect? Iíve only used the stock three times. Into small jars it goes, one cup per jar. On with the lids, and into the steam sterilizer!

Iíll have seven min-jars of stock available for cooking.

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The strained steamed Basmati rice is smeared over the cauliflower curry, covered with waxed paper, chilled, and then frozen.

Once they are frozen Iíll wrap each tray, or triplet of frozen trays, in plastic bags to ease handling and reduce freezer burn. if they last that long without being eaten.

Roll On Winter!


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