(fair warning...my next request is going to be favorite dairy-free meal ideas as my lactose intolerant husband is killing me with his inability to digest cheese/milk/cream etc which are all my favorite ingredients in the winter!!) _________________ The life, trials, tribulations, and adventures of the every woman in the kitchen; the Attainable Gourmet.
For most people, Indian food requires investing a series of new, often unfamiliar ingredients. But once you have a stocked pantry, the dishes are simple and fairly forgiving (though it's not 'fast food) and very nutritious. Let me know if you have any questions.
A few years ago, on a thread about Indian food, I'd posted this recipe. I thought it might be worth posting again, since it's fairly basic. In South India, we frequently add vegetables (tomato, spinach, bitter cucumbers, green mangoes) to our lentils. Feel free to leave out the asoefetida or curry leaves if you don't have them. This recipe relies on 'tempering'--a technique that is central to a lot of Indian cooking. Spices are 'popped' or browned in a small amount of oil, and then the entire mixture (spices and oil) are added to the main dish.
Boil about 1-2 cups of cleaned, washed daal in about 3-4 cups of water (I use either toor or masoor daal), until almost soft. Add salt to taste and 1/2 tsp of turmeric and 2 slit green chilies. I also add some chopped tomatoes at this point. Continue simmering until the daal is very soft, and the tomatoes have softened.
In a separate, small frying pan, heat 2 tbsp of oil. Add 1 tsp of mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds, a pinch of asoefetida, 2 crumbled dried red chilies (if you like the heat), a whole clove of garlic, and some curry leaves (if you have them). When the mustard seeds start to pop, take the pan off the heat and add all the contents to your cooked daal. This is a fairly common technique in Indian cooking--heating whole spices in oil, until they pop. This flavours the oil, and the oil will then flavour your dish.
Adjust your seasonings (adding salt or chili powder if you want). Add a big squeeze of lemon or lime juice and garnish with fresh chopped cilantro/coriander leaves.
Joined: 11 Nov 2007 Posts: 236 Location: Madison, WI
Posted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 7:12 pm Post subject:
I like to make freshly cooked garbanzos (cooked all night in my slow cooker rather than canned) either with Indian inspired curry spices, or with Spanish spices, both served with basmati rice. Occasionally I will add some ham to the Spanish-inspired beans, but that is obviously not vegetarian so not to be mentioned in this post! Oven roasted vegetables are also a favorite.
Joined: 21 Aug 2007 Posts: 552 Location: Central Kentucky
Posted: Wed Jan 12, 2011 3:41 am Post subject:
Hard to pick just one, but if I had to it would go to this
1 large sweet onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 large garlic clove, minced
8 oz wild mushrooms, cleaned and sliced thin
A splash balsomic vinegar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 large eggs, cooked hard and quartered
1 cup Brazil nuts or pecans
1/2 cup almonds
1 tbls tamari or other soy sauce
1/2 tsp chili powder (ancho preferred)
Salt and white pepper to taste
In a heavy skillet saute the onion, garic, and mushrooms in the butter with the vinegar. Saute until soft and almost golden. Set aside to cool.
Pulse the eggs and nuts in a food processor until thoroughly minced. Add the mushroom mixture, tamari, chili powder, salt and pepper. Process 5-10 seconds to combine.
Tranfer mixture to a serving bowl, cover with film wrap, and refrigerate 2-3 hours to let flavors meld. Remove from fridge about a half hour before serving.
Joined: 11 Nov 2007 Posts: 236 Location: Madison, WI
Posted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:08 pm Post subject:
I will make that some time. (The paté). It looks delicious! It would be nice on a fresh baguette if you can get a good one in your town. (We can now get ok ones thanks to Whole Foods--aka Whole Paycheck. Before then our town, as food oriented as it is, was a bakery desert, with nothing but sickeningly sweet pastries, mushy bread, and hard, brittle croissants with a weird aftertaste.) A friend of mine has now started making excellent home baked bread that rivals French bakery bread. If you don't have a decent bakery in your area I can send it. I will be trying the bread myself this week.
For a great vegetarian dinner, a bit more elaborate than pasta, I've really enjoyed Clotilde's Baked Ratatouille from the Chocolate and Zucchini Cookbook. Great fun to make and wonderful to behold, even better to eat with good buttered bread and nothing else. _________________ Vivant Linguae Mortuae!!
Joined: 19 Apr 2010 Posts: 17 Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:10 pm Post subject:
I just came up with this simple bean and mushroom stew that rocketed right to the top of my "favorite vegetarian dinners" list! It's simple and unbelievably good. I used Christmas Lima beans from Rancho Gordo, but you could use gigante beans or cannellinis.
Hope you like it!
Heirloom Bean and Mushroom Stew
1 pound large beans (Christmas limas, gigantes, etc.), soaked overnight
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 medium onions, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
8 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
6 ounces portobello mushrooms, chopped
8 ounces shiitake mushrooms, thickly sliced
3 springs fresh thyme
1 28-ounce can whole plum tomatoes in puree
1/2 cup red or white wine
1/2 cup reserved bean cooking liquid, or additional wine
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Place the beans in a large pot and cover with water by about two inches. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the beans are tender (mine took nearly two hours; smaller beans will take significantly less time.) Drain, reserving a half-cup of cooking liquid.
Heat the olive oil over medium heat in another dutch oven or very deep skillet. Add the onions and garlic, and saute for 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and thyme, raise the heat to medium-high and cook for 5 minutes longer, stirring constantly. Add the tomatoes including the puree, crushing the tomatoes with your hands and discarding the hard stem ends. Add the wine, bean cooking liquid, parsley, salt and pepper. Gently stir in the beans. Simmer, partially covered, for about 20 minutes. _________________ Cathy
Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 7:08 pm Post subject: Favorite Vegetarian Meals
I go for simplicity every time. Like David, I'd go for pasta with veg, but I do love stir-fried mushrooms, onions, courgettes (zucchini) with coarse ground black pepper on toast. Very quick and very simple. _________________ Confusion comes fitted as standard.
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