Category Archives: Indian

Learning to Prepare Curry ~Two Ways

I know for sure that one of the flavors that I am attracted to the most when it comes to Indian foods is the smoky cumin. Not only the cumin, but all of the smoky, spicy and deep flavors that come from the garam masala  and all the spices are amazing. There are subtle hints of cinnamon that remind me of my favorite  Mexican mole recipe. For today’s blog post I prepared  my version of  Indian curry. Very often the curry is prepared with wonderful aromatics, such as garlic, ginger,  hot peppers, onion and a wide variety of spices. One of the staples as well is coconut milk or yogurt.  But just know that the most important ingredient for these curry recipes are the spices. Once you find that correct spice combination, you will be preparing curry on a regular basis. The first one is prepared with a light coconut milk, chicken, sweet peppers, hot peppers and chickpeas. The second one is a meatless curry with roasted butternut squash and chickpeas again. The meatless curry includes tomatoes ans tomato paste as the base for the sauce. A lighter version of curry, but filled with flavor!  I am really looking forward to trying my hand at a hearty beef curry and a spicy seafood green curry! To be continued….

 

Spicy Chicken Curry with Chickpeas

Spicy Chicken Curry with Chickpeas
Spicy Chicken Curry with Chickpeas

Ingredients

For Spice Blend

1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cumin seeds or ground cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

*the last two can be adjusted according to your heat level. Also on the plate was a sea salt with crushed chiles. I was out of cardamom, but if you have it, add 1/2 teaspoon as well.

Curry Spice Blend
Curry Spice Blend

 

For Chicken
Olive oil
1 pound chicken tenders
Kosher salt
Fresh cracked pepper

For Curry
Olive or grapeseed oil
1 cup onion, diced
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 serrano peppers, minced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
1 1/2  tablespoons tamarind paste
4 ounces tomato paste
2 roma tomato, diced
15 ounce can lite coconut milk
1 cup chicken broth
15 ounce can chickpeas, drained
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 small yellow bell pepper, diced
Juice of 2 key limes
Salt to taste

You will also need
4 cups steamed yellow rice
Cilantro, green onions and lime wedges for garnish

Prepping for Curry
Prepping for Curry

Directions

1.  Measure out spices for curry spice blend.  Mix together and set aside. Season the chicken tenders with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle with olive oil and set aside.

2. In a large skillet, preheat 3 tablespoons of grapeseed oil to medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Brown the chicken for a few minutes per side. Remove from skillet and transfer to a plate.

3. In that same skillet at medium heat, add 1 more tablespoon of oil. Add the onion, garlic, serrano and ginger. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the curry spice blend and cook the spices until they become aromatic. Stir so they don’t burn.

4. Add all of the remaining ingredients for curry into the skillet. Stir well to combine and bring to a boil.  Taste for salt and pepper. Reduce to a simmer, add chicken tenders back into the curry, Cover and continue cooking for 25 minutes. Serve with rice and garnish with cilantro and more lime. Yields 4 hearty servings.

Spicy Chicken and Chickpea Curry
Spicy Chicken and Chickpea Curry

 

Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry

Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry
Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry

Ingredients

For Roasted Butternut Squash

2 pounds fresh butternut squash, sliced into chunks
salt
pepper
cumin
smoked paprika
garlic powder
chile de arbol or cayenne pepper
Grapeseed or olive oil

 

To Finish Curry Base

1 red onion, diced
3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
2 to 3 dried chile de arbol or 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon smoked hot paprika or regular paprika
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/3 to 1/2 teaspoon chile de arbol powder or cayenne pepper
salt to taste
14 ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes
6 ounces tomato paste
2 tablespoons tamarind paste/concentrate
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
14 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

For Garnish
Cilantro
Chile oil
lime wedges

*Serve with naan bread and steamed rice. For a more mild curry, just add minimal quantities of the red pepper flakes, chile de arbol and hot chile powders. You could always serve the chile oil on the side for those who like their curry spicy.

 

Customize Your Spice Blends For Curry
Customize Your Spice Blends For Curry

 

Directions 

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil paper. Add the butternut squash to baking sheet and season lightly with spices listed. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to mix and spread ot evenly. Roast for 30 minutes.

2. In a large pot, preheat 3 tablespoons of olive or grapeseed oil to medium heat for a few minutes. Add the onions, garlic and ginger, saute for 5 minutes. Add the chile de arbol (or red pepper flakes) and all the spices listed. Toast in the oil for about 30 seconds, stirring often.

3. Add in the remaining ingredients, stir well to combine. Bring to a boil, taste for salt and other spices. Add in the roasted squash, reduce heat and continue cooking at a simmer for 25 to 30 minutes. Yields 6 servings.

Whole Wheat Naan Bread Infused with Thai Chili Garlic Sauce
Whole Wheat Naan Bread Infused with Thai Chili Garlic Sauce

Here is the link to look up the recipe for this wonderful Naan Bread. I used whole wheat flour instead of all purpose and I added Thai Chile Garlic Sauce instead of garlic paste. Very tasty!!

http://www.binjalsvegkitchen.com/butter-garlic-naan-without-tandoor-oven1/

 

Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry
Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry

 

Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry with Whole Wheat Naan Bread
Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpea Curry with Whole Wheat Naan Bread

 

I like it Spicy~Habanero Hummus

For me, hummus is one of those addicting foods that I crave. But for me, it has to be spicy with that right note of acid and salt to keep me coming back for more. Besides being a great appetizer for any occasion, it makes a great vegetarian meal. it’s quite filling and very satisfying.

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups chickpeas
2 habaneros, sliced
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1/3 cup flat leaf parsely, chopped
Juice of 1 lemon
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini paste
4 to 5 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste

For Indian Spiced Sauce
1/2 cup flat leaf parsely, chopped finely
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped finely
1/4 cup green onions, sliced finely
1 roma tomato, seeded, diced small
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 serrano, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Habanero Hummus

Directions

1. Combine all of the ingredients for the hummus in the food processor. Process on high until smooth. Using a rubber spatula push hummus down and process again until smooth. Taste for salt, transfer to serving dish. Cover and let sit for at least 30 minutes or refrigerate until ready to serve.

2. In another bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the Indian spiced sauce. Stir well to combine, taste for salt. This sauce is always better if it has a chance to sit for an hour or more. I do suggest hand chopping instead of throwing it into the processor. The hummus is served over a simple naan bread and garnished with avocado slices and more habanero.

Indian Spiced Beef Tacos

Ingredients

For Beef
1 pound beef stew meat, sliced thin
*These spices are all ground spices
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon coriander
Olive oil or grape seed oil
1 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
1 poblano pepper, sliced into strips
1 small red onion, sliced into strips

For Indian Spiced Salsa/Chimichurri
1/2 cup flat leaf parsely, chopped finely
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped finely
1/4 cup green onions, sliced finely
1 roma tomato, seeded, diced small
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 serrano, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Indian Spiced Beef Tacos

Directions

1. Combine all of the dry spices and season beef generously. Transfer to a storage bag or an airtight container and marinate in refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours.

2. In another bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the Indian spiced parsley/cilantro sauce. Stir well to combine, taste for salt. Cover and set aside. Remove beef from refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking.

3. In a large skillet or wok, preheat 3 tablespoons of oil to medium/high heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Stir fry beef for 5 minutes, stirring often. Add in the peppers and onions and continue cooking for another 2 minutes. Serve over naan bread or flour tortillas and garnish with Indian spiced  salsa/chimichurri. Yields  up to 6 servings as an appetizer .

Tips~ It may seem like alot of spices, so what I like to do is make my own spice blend and keep it stored in my pantry for future dishes. Always keep spices stored in a cool dark space.