a journey from the heart

Posts tagged ‘Curry’

Carrot Soup

I heard from a friend yesterday, inquiring as to if I am still posting food recipes and I had to own up to my extreme laziness of late. What started as a nine day adventure of being “off the grid” has become more of a lackadaisical approach to anything technology based outside of the office. So, for Tom, one of my favorite recipes, newly adapted. (Over the next week I will post tales of being off the grid, and some other new recipes!)

Our weather has finally taken a turn toward autumn, and thus the return of the soup pot. While I have become better at making smaller quantities (I learned how to cook for fifteen, but that’s another story for another day), I still need a fairly decent sized pot. Ten quarts is my smallest soup pot. Of course the upside to that is leftovers. And if you don’t know it yet, soup (and sauce) is always better the next day. Marriage of the ingredients is key!

So without further ado….

Ingredients:

Carrots (I use 2 lbs.)
Potato (any variety you prefer; for a thicker soup)
Almonds (great texture; they add a little crunch)
Onion
Garlic
Fresh ginger root
Curry powder (recipe)
Cracked red pepper
Salt
Coconut milk (14 oz)
Olive oil
Butter
Water

As always, let your own tastes guide you. And, you don’t have to chop anything too finely as this soup will be puréed.

Chop your onion, garlic, ginger, and if you didn’t by sliced/chopped almonds, also chop those. Put all these ingredients in your soup pot with some olive oil and a pat of butter. Over medium heat, sauté until the onions are translucent.

While your sauté is sautéing, chop your carrots and potato. Add the carrots and potato, curry powder, and enough water to just cover your soup. Bring to a boil, then simmer until carrots and potato are fork tender. Turn off the heat, move to a cold burner, and let cool for about 45 minutes.

Once relatively cool, pour soup into a large bowl. Ladle soup into blender and purée, pouring puréed soup back into the original pot. Repeat as many times as necessary until all the soup is puréed.

Return to low heat, adding the coconut milk, stirring regularly until warmed to desired temperature. Serve warm, garnished with a few cracked red pepper flakes and cilantro (parsley is also an option).

I used to make this recipe with heavy cream instead of coconut milk, with cinnamon and nutmeg instead of curry powder. Garnish with thin slices of apple, lightly sautéed in butter and brown sugar.

Either way… Bon appetite!

20130918-215814.jpg

Currying Flavor

I love rich, flavorful food. Tonight I knew I wanted lentils, but not just regular lentils with a little seasoning. I wanted that deep, pungent flavor that you can only get from Indian food.

Living with another person provides opportunities to dirty more dishes, but also the opportunity to flex those creative muscles to prepare a meal you will each enjoy. Of all the potatoes in the world, sweet potatoes are my favorite. My boyfriend, on the other hand, his least favorite. Being inspired I found a way to create this dish with just as much flavor and tending to not only my palate, but that of my loved one.

So, without any more ado, here’s my recipe for Curried Red Lentils.

Ingredient list:
1 cup dry red lentils
1 sweet potato
4 medium-ish potatoes of varying colors
Cauliflower
Carrots
Kale
Cilantro
Green onions
Garlic
Ginger root
Curry powder ***I make my own ~ ingredient list below.
4 cups water
Lime
Coarse sea salt ***Salt slows the cooking time for lentils; add just before serving.
Fresh ground pepper

Naan bread ***Store bought this evening, due to time.

Ingredient list for curry powder:
Cumin
Coriander
Cardamom
Turmeric
Ground mustard
Cayenne pepper
Cracked red pepper
Ginger

You know your own palette better than anyone else. I do not follow a prescribed combination of theses spices, but rather let my olfactory senses determine the amounts of each. Needless to say, I never make the same curry twice.

Enough said…on to the actual cooking!

Prepare your curry powder first and set it aside. Sauté the chopped whites of the green onion (setting the chopped green tops aside for garnish), garlic, and chopped ginger in a little oil. I used canola this evening. After about 3-4 minutes add your curry powder (I used about a tablespoon), lentils, carrots, cauliflower, cilantro and kale with four cups of water. Stir well and let simmer until the lentils are cooked (about 15 minutes).

While this is cooking, place your chopped potatoes in separate pots with about 1/4 cup water (the regular potatoes may require a little more water) and a teaspoon of curry powder and a dash of salt. Stir well, bring to a boil and simmer until cooked. Drain the excess liquid from the potato pots and pour that liquid into the curried red lentils (there won’t be enough to add any potato flavor, but you get to keep the nutrients).

Serve hot with lime wedges and chopped green onion to garnish. And don’t forget the Naan!

20130729-200001.jpg

As always, let your palate guide the amount of each ingredient you use.

Bon apetite!