Thursday, October 27, 2011

Simple Vegetable Curry

I was surprised at how much my husband raved about this meal. My kids loved it too. (I'm pretty sure the coconut milk and the curry paste are the cause.) The recipe hails from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food and you can print it here. This really is a delicious Fall dish that makes a fantastic vegetarian dinner too.

Simple Vegetable Curry

Serves 4

1 tablespoon vegetable oil (I use canola.)
2 teaspoons brown mustard seeds
1 medium yellow onion, diced small
1 cup long-grain white rice
coarse salt and ground pepper
1 tablespoon red curry paste (I use Thai Kitchen red curry paste.)
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (I use the entire 14-ounce can.)
1 sweet potato (about 3/4 pound), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 small cauliflower, cut into florets
1 can (15.5 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
fresh cilantro, for serving

1. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high. Add mustard seeds and half the onion and cook, stirring often, until onion is soft, 3 minutes. Add rice and stir to combine. Add 1 1/2 cups water, season with salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer; cook until water is absorbed and rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.

2. Meanwhile, in a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high. Add remaining onion and cook, stirring often, until soft, 3 minutes. Add curry paste and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in coconut milk and 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Add sweet potato and cauliflower and season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer until vegetables are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.

3. Stir chickpeas into curry and increase heat to high. Simmer rapidly until liquid reduces slightly, 2 minutes. Serve curry over rice with cilantro.

Julie's Notes:  I prepared the rice in my rice cooker. When it was finished, I stirred in the cooked onion, mustard seeds, salt, and pepper. Either way works. I'm glad I included the brown mustard seeds even though they are not something I usually stock in my pantry. I liked the visual appeal and the slight flavor addition.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Brussels Sprouts in Brown Butter

Yes, my children eat Brussels sprouts and actually really like them!

Kellie made these one night. (I love it when my girls come home and want to cook.) I had purchased Brussels sprouts at Costco and she wanted to try them a new way. She found this recipe from Julia Child's The Way to Cook. Simple flavors, but oh so good.

Brussels Sprouts in Brown Butter

1.  Prepare the Brussels sprouts by first trimming off the stems close to the heads without detaching the leaves; pull off any loose or wilted leaves. For even cooking, pierce a cross 3/8 inch deep in the stem ends. Wash and drain them before cooking.

2.  Blanch the Brussels sprouts as follows:

For 4 to 6 servings

1 to 1 1/2 pounds or quarts prepared Brussels sprouts
6 quarts or more rapidly boiling water
3 tablespoons salt (1 1/2 tsp per quart of water)

Plunge the sprouts into the rapidly boiling water, cover the pan only just until the water comes back to the boil, then boil slowly uncovered. In 4 minutes begin testing:  dip out a Brussels sprout and pierce it with a small sharp-pointed knife--it is done when the knife goes in fairly easily. Drain immediately.

3.  Halve or quarter the blanched Brussels sprouts lengthwise. Shortly before serving, set a 10-inch no-stick frying pan over moderately high heat, add 3 tablespoons of butter, and when bubbling, add the sprouts. Season lightly with salt and pepper, and toss, swirling the pan by its handle, for several minutes while the sprouts heat through and begin to brown very lightly. Serve as soon as possible.