1 Curry Sauce 3 Ways

So last week I made that chickpea curry here, well guess what, I had some left over sauce and managed to stretch it out into 3 different dishes over the week with leftovers for lunch (I didn’t count the leftovers in the title).   Pretty smart huh? Anyways want to know the details of my genius? (I’ll stop with the sickening over confidence now)

1.  I started with the curry sauce on Sunday and made this lovely chickpea curry, then I portioned off some of that and added the leftovers of my roast into a tub and packed that up for lunch.

Chickpea Curry

2.  On Tuesday night I roasted off some aubergine chunks and boiled some lentils then plonked them all in a pot with half of the remaining curry sauce.  This provided me with dinner for one and a portion for lunch the next day.  For dinner I served it with a garlic flat bread using Isabel’s fantastic gluten free pizza dough mix smothered in garlic butter.

Aubergine and Lentil Curry with Gluten Free Garlic Flat Bread

3.  Then the final dish was a baked egg in curry sauce with peas and a gluten free pitta (or 2).  I poured the leftover sauce into a small baking dish (I heart Falconware!), cracked in an egg and baked in the oven at 200 for about 20 minutes.  Just before it was ready I boiled up some peas, scattered them across and toasted a pitta to dip in.

Curry Baked Egg with Peas and Pitta

So my dear readers, what d’ya think?  Nifty huh? Hope you like it x

Vlog!

So here it is, my first attempt at a video blog, I’ve been wanting to do one of these for a long time and finally realised I could just set up my laptop and use the webcam to film it – no this isn’t going to be nominated for a best filmography award, but it is a start.  It has taken a lot to get this far, every time I watch it I cringe and am truly  crushed by the often starring role of my big fat double chin!!!  ARGGHHH!!  But anyway, I’m 30 now and have to accept that I’m far from perfect and that my bum does look big in pretty much everything I wear (breaks into chorus of ‘I like big butts and I can not lie’).

So I hope you like it, please let me know, I’d love to hear what you think.  The recipe included is for a gram flour flat bread featured here and here with a dry potato and pea curry, very similar to the written recipes I’ve linked to.

Right so here we go (closes eyes, covers face and tries not to peek):

Thanks for watching and  let me know what you think by making a comment…

Spinach, Potato and Onion Curry (Saag Aloo??)

So I’m attempting to cut down the shopping bill by buying less meat and therefore eating more veg.  This is a quick veggie curry, it reminds me very much of Saag Aloo and I’m guessing it’s pretty close seeing as all that means is spinach and potato.  I’m upping my game here and diversifying with separate spices, I thought it was going to be tricky to get the balance right but turns out it’s pretty simple and you get a much more defined combination of flavours.  I served this with a version of my super quick raita, a mix of yoghurt, fresh coriander and a squirt of the ubiquitous sweet chilli sauce – you can’t take it away from me, it’s my friend!

Spinach, Potato and Onion Curry

Serves 2/3 with pitta or flat breads and the raita mentioned above

Ingredients:

  • About 500g of new potatoes
  • A couple of big handfuls of spinach
  • 2 onions
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of ground coriander
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of ground cumin
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon of brown mustard seeds
  • some oil, I made this with that spray light stuff (I don’t really want to think about what goes into that stuff but it is diet friendly, if you don’t need to use it DON’T)
  • Salt and pepper
  • A handful of fresh coriander
  • Pitta or flat breads to serve with for pure carb on carb action – I ate this for lunch without so it’s not a necessary and obviously if you can make your own flat breads go you, but I couldn’t be arsed so got out a gluten free pitta and popped it in the toaster

Method:

Boil the potatoes until tender then drain and set aside.

Slice and soften the onions, I nuke mine in a covered bowl for 4 min, but you can stand over a pan on a low heat if you wish.  If nuking transfer to a hot frying pan and begin to brown the onions in a little oil.  When the onions are starting to brown add the spices and fry for a min or so.

Add the cooked potatoes and bash about a bit in the pan so that they break up and colour and mingle with the spices.  Add the spinach at the last minute, turn the heat of stir together so the spinach wilts and season generously.  This dish likes salt.

Chop up some fresh coriander, chuck some in your raita and some in your finished curry then serve with accompaniments suggested or what ever your heart desires!

Aubergine Curry with Gram Flour Flat Breads

I was pretty surprised at just how delicious this curry was.  I cooked it without any oil, just a little of that spray light and it worked really well, it also means it’s practically fat free and good for the diet (zzzzzz).  I think the secret is the grilling of the whole aubergine until charred and smoky and then using the scooped out flesh.  I’ve made the flat breads before, they are kind of a mix between socca and dosas in that they utilise the basic concept of the socca recipe, gram flour, water and seasoning, yet I make them like a dosa style pancake.

Aubergine Curry with Gram Flour Flat Breads and Cottage Cheese (yeah that's right, COTTAGE CHEESE!)

Oh yeah and I served it up with some cottage cheese, now I know I’m going to sound a little like a diet obsessed freak here but it worked really well, almost like a creamier yoghurt type substitute with a bit more body and the cool, soft cheese provided the perfect partner to this spiced aubergine and made a change from the more traditional yoghurt.  In fact I read somewhere someone talking about how cottage cheese was pretty much the same as ricotta and although sadly underrated made a much cheaper alternative.  Right enough said, it’s alright you know!

Serves 1 or 2 as a side dish

Ingredients:

  • 1 aubergine
  • 1 smallish onion
  • 2 tomatoes, skinned and de-seeded
  • 2 fat cloves of garlic
  • an inch of ginger
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of mild curry powder
  • salt
  • Spray light (or if you are not watching your waistline they go ahead pour a load of yummy oil in the pan *evil eyes*)

Method:

Turn your grill on.  Whack your aubergine under the grill and turn every few minutes until it is charred and saggy.  Set aside.

Slice your onion and soften in the microwave with a splash of water, ie put in bowl, splash with water and cover with a plate, I normally put it in on high for about 3 minutes.

Finely chop your garlic and ginger with some salt.  Heat a small frying pan and spray with oil.  Add your softened onions and ginger and garlic and fry until slightly browned.  Add the curry powder and fry for 30 seconds.  Add the roughly chopped tomatoes and fry for another min.  Scoop out the innards of the aubergine and add to the pan.  Stir and season to taste.

Serve with the flat breads, see recipe here, some cottage cheese and maybe a bit of mango chutney.  I serve it all separately but it would make a great wrap if you were wanting a fajita vibe.

Cauliflower Curry with Spiced Gram Flour Flatbreads

I made this curry after a visit to Chennai Dosa on the London Road in Croydon.  It’s an ace South Indian restaurant that has canteen style decor and  friendly and receptive staff.  It does Dosa by the dozen in any form you could think of and is delicious and very reasonable, they even do a 5 foot family dosa – now that’s something I might have to come back for!  When we went we tried the Gobi (cauliflower) Dry Curry to start and then had Masala Dosa and Masala Dosa Paneer for mains.  I love dosas but unfortunately haven’t tried making them as yet, I think it involves fermenting ground rice and that is perhaps a step to far in our a little flat.  But it was the gobi that got me thinking, cauliflower is an excellent vegetable for taking on spice in a curry and after buying myself a nice head of it at my local green grocers I felt I ought to have a go.  I went for a dry style curry like they served in the restaurant ( I think this is a bit more of a north Indian dish, tell me if I’m wrong).  It is really easy to make and instead of the dosas I had dreamed of, I whipped up a kind of flat bread/pancake style gram flour mix to eat the curry with. 

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 a head of cauliflower, split into little florets
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • An inch of ginger, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of medium curry powder
  • 4 spring onions, sliced
  • Salt
  • Splash of water

For the flat breads:

  • 2 heaped tablespoons of gram flour (chickpea or besan flour)
  • 1 teaspoon of garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon of mild curry powder
  • A big pinch of salt
  • Water

Method:

Par boil your cauliflower florets for 5 min, drain, rinse with cold water and set aside. 

Soften the sliced onion until translucent then fry for a couple of minutes with the garlic and ginger and the spices.  Add the cauliflower and spring onions and mix together in the pan making sure the cauliflower absorbs all the flavours whilst still frying and heating through.  Season and add a splash of water if it begins to stick.

For the breads: 

Mix the flour, spices and salt with water until you get a pancake like batter the consistency of double cream.  Heat a large frying pan and add enough oil to coat the base of the pan.  Once hot add a ladle of the batter and tip the pan like your making pancakes so the batter spreads into the shape of the pan (basically treat this as a pancake batter).  Once air bubbles appear on the surface, flip and cook until golden brown.  If you are making more than 2 keep them warm in the oven whilst you finish off your curry. 

Serve the curry and the breads together with some raita and get stuck in! I reckon this would work well as hot wraps as or as an additional dish to whole banquet of other curries. 

Curry Goat

I have been meaning to make a deep, dark lamb curry for ages but I couldn’t decide on how to approach it or what recipe to choose and then I remembered this recipe from a great little community publication Urban Feast.  The book was created by a bunch of local Croydonites and students from a local school.  I think it was orignally a free book given out from the library and an old colleague of mine passed on several copies of it to use with my students as reading actvities.  I have used it several times and it has a great dvd accompaniment that shows each dish being made and sourced round Croydon. 

Anyway I marinaded the meat last night and left it in the fridge until mid morning today then cooked it off.  The recipe can be found here http://www.croydon.gov.uk/contents/departments/leisure/pdf/urbanfeast in an electronic copy of the book.  Please have a look as it is a really interesting read full of wonderful recipes ranging from traditional Pie and Mash to the delicious Curry Goat.

This worked out really well, it’s an intensely spiced, dark and flavourful curry.  I chickened out and omitted the Scotch Bonnet Chilli, and it still tasted amazing.  I might even temper the left overs with a little coconut milk and serve it up to my two year old later for dinner.  Do try this and don’t forget to check out the book….