Archive for September, 2010

Basic tasty Indian vegan curry with pilau turmeric rice

Sep 30 2010 Published by under Recipes

Basic tasty Indian vegan curry with pilau turmeric rice

A vegan Indian curry is very neutral as it can be consumed by anyone whether they eat meat, are vegetarian or are vegan and hence its great for serving at a dinner table for friends and family. A well made and refrigerated curry should last till about 5 to 7 days and hence suits our modern busy lifestyles where sometimes we just need ready food we can warm up after work or studies. Try out the following real simple but delicious nutritious curry recipe created by Jake.

1 chopped onion, a tube of garlic paste (or fresh ground garlic), dried methi(fenugreek) leaves also called kasuri methi(or fresh methi leaves), ginger powder(or freshly ground ginger), cumin seeds,star anise, fenugreek powder, yellow mustard seeds, turmeric powder, chili powder, mango powder, pomegranate powder, ground nutmeg, coriander powder, cinnamon powder, some green or black cardamons, cloves, 1kg basmati rice, onion seeds, olive oil, 3 fresh carrots chopped, 1 freshly grated small beetroot, 2 cans chickpeas, 2 small cans of new potatoes or about 10 freshly boiled new potatoes, either 3 tomatoes or 1 to 2 apples of any variety ripe or unripe, half a lemon, 1 packet baby spinach, chopped fresh coriander.

(The above ingredients are key to Indian food recipes so do store them in your cupboard)


For the rice(start cooking this before the curry):

Wash half the bag of rice gently just once in a pot. Now fill it with water till the water level reaches halfway of the tallness of your middle finger from the surface of the rice resting in the water. Next, place the rice on your stove at top fire, and add to it quickly, a pinch of salt, a pinch of turmeric, a teaspoon of onion seeds, about 5-7 cloves and 3-4 crushed cardamons(or a teaspoon of cardamon powder), and a dash of olive oil. Stir , then cover with a lid. Once you hear it boiling or roughly after about 5 minutes, reduce the fire to minimum low without removing the lid. The rice will cook very slowly now while you get on with your curry.

For the curry:

1) Add a small ladle of olive oil to your kwok on medium fire.Add a dash of blended mustard oil too if you any. After 2 minutes add the onions and chopped carrots, a handful of dried or fresh methi leaves, a teaspoon of ground ginger, and an inch of garlic paste(or 2 tablespoons of garlic-ginger paste), a tablespoon of cumin, and 2 star anise, a teaspoon of fenugreek powder,1 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1 freshly chopped red( or green) chilli or 2 teaspoons of red cili powder, and 1 to 2 tablespoons of freshly grated beetroot. As you keep stirring the mixture continue adding 1 teaspoon of pomegranate powder, i teaspoon of mango powder, 1 tablespoon of coriander powder, 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg powder, and some salt to taste.

2)Next, add the chopped tomatoes or apples . Keep stirring this mixture as it turns from yellow to bright to deep red as in a curry and the apples,tomatoes soften up so you can gently mash them in. Within 10 minutes, oil bubbles should start appearing on this simmering curry sauce. Keep stirring till more bubbles appear. As the ingredients get cooked they tend to release the oil they initially soaked in, and this is a sign of a good curry.

3) Next, add at this stage, the drained cans of chickpeas, cooked new or baby potatoes, the bag of spinach, and the juice of half a lemon. Gently bring this to a boil, and add some hot water if necessary for the desired thickness. Also use a potato masher to gently mash some of the chickpeas and potatoes in the simmering sauce as this acts as a thickener and flavour enhancer.

4)Finally, add the chopped coriander and taste for salt.

Now uncover the rice lid and stir the rice. Serve up on a plate rice and curry and garnish with rocket leaves and fresh rocket chillies or finger chillies.

Tip: A chopped raw onion and some chutney or pickle are perfect accompaniments

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Seasonal Fruit Chutney

Sep 30 2010 Published by under Recipes

Chutneys are tasty accompaniments to any meal usually with a sweet sour fruity hint, very popular in Indian cuisine, and packed with vitamin C. They add flavour, colour, and variety to any meal. You can easily make a jar or a few different jars from different fruits and keep them in your refrigerator for three or more weeks without needing preservatives and colourings.

Before you cook, buy the following ingredients from Asian grocers nearby. These ingredients are useful for other Asian recipes too.

Small tin of blended mustard oil, fennel seeds, packet of crushed red dried chilies, turmeric powder, chili powder, onion seeds, black mustard seeds, pomegranate powder, mango powder, sugar, fresh curry leaves.

Select a fruit of your choice or a mixture e.g 6-7 apples, pears, plums, peaches, nectarines, or a huge papaya or pineapple cut and cleaned or even melon.

1)Get wok on a medium fire, add to it a few curry leaves(optional), 4 tablespoons or small ladle of blended mustard oil. When warmed, add to oil, 1 tablespoon of onion seeds, 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds, 2 teaspoons of mustard seeds, and gently fry these till they start popping.

2)Now add your chopped up fresh fruits, and half a glass of water. To this mixture add 1 teaspoon of turmeric, 1 teaspoon cili powder, 1 teaspoon cili flakes, 1 teaspoon pomegranate powder, 1 teaspoon mango powder, some salt and stir gently. Next cover the kwok and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes checking frequently and adding more water and stirring to prevent burning.

3)When the fruit appears to be softening, use a potato masher or hand blender or just your ladle to press, crush and mix the kwok ingredients so they appear to form a nice chutney texture(thick and soft). Add to this bubbling simmering mixture, a few liberal tablespoons of white, brown or demerara sugar(or sweetener) to create a sweet sour hint. Stir gently(lowerng fire if necessary) for a few more minutes till you feel satisfied with the consistency and salt. You can squeeze in some lemon or lime juice too(or add more mango and pomegranate powders) and adjust sugar to create a nice sweet sour balance. At this stage your chutney will still be a little runny but will get thicker as it cools down.

4)Pour the fresh chutney into jars and label them. When cooled down, store in your refrigerator.

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