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10 June 2014

Some Recipes

As promised on the podcast (by Ian), here are some of my favourite (vegetarian) recipes. Many of them can be made vegan with only minor fiddling. So, in no particular order...

Curried Squash and Apple Soup

1 tablespoon butter
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 medium butternut (or large acorn) squash
2 apples
2 cups chicken-flavoured broth
2 cups milk
salt and pepper

Peel and chop the squash and apples. In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes, or until softened. Stir in curry power, squash, and apples, and sauté for 2 minutes. Add broth, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 15–20 minutes, or until squash and apples are soft.

Blend the soup using an immersion blender, then stir in milk and reheat over medium heat, stirring, until steaming (but do not boil). Season to taste, serve, and garnish with fresh herbs if desired.

Black Bean and Salsa Soup

2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1½ cups vegetable broth
1 cup salsa
1 teaspoon ground cumin
4 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons sliced green onion

In an electric food processor or blender, combine beans, broth, salsa, and cumin. Blend until fairly smooth. Heat the bean mixture in a saucepan over medium heat until thoroughly heated. Ladle soup into 4 individual bowls, and top each bowl with 1 tablespoon of the sour cream and ½ tablespoon green onion.

Eggplant Parmesan

3 eggplant, peeled and thinly sliced
2 eggs, beaten
4 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs
6 cups spaghetti sauce, divided
1 (16 ounce) package mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
½ teaspoon dried basil

Preheat oven to 350˚F (175˚C). Salt the eggplant slices, then dip them in egg, then in bread crumbs. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 5–10 minutes on each side. In a 9x13 inch baking dish spread spaghetti sauce to cover the bottom. Place a layer of eggplant slices in the sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Repeat with remaining ingredients, ending with the cheeses. Sprinkle basil on top. Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, or until golden brown.

Dal Makheni
(Indian Lentils)

1 cup lentils
¼ cup dry kidney beans
water to cover
5 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
4 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick, broken
4 bay leaves
6 whole cloves
1½ tablespoons ginger paste
1½ tablespoons garlic paste
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 cup canned tomato purée
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 tablespoons ground coriander
¼ cup butter
2 tablespoons dried fenugreek leaves
½ cup cream

Place lentils and kidney beans in a large bowl; cover with plenty of water. Soak for at least 2 hours or overnight. Drain.

Cook lentils, kidney beans, 5 cups water, and salt in a pot over medium heat until tender, stirring occasionally, about 1 hour. Remove from heat and set aside. Keep the lentils, kidney beans, and any excess cooking water in the pot.

Heat vegetable oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook cumin seeds in the hot oil until they begin to pop, 1 to 2 minutes. Add cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, and cloves; cook until bay leaves turn brown, about 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium-low; add ginger paste, garlic paste, turmeric, and cayenne pepper. Stir to coat.

Stir tomato purée into spice mixture; cook over medium heat until slightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Add chili powder, coriander, and butter; cook and stir until butter is melted.

Stir lentils, kidney beans and any leftover cooking water into tomato mixture; bring to a boil, reduce heat to low. Stir fenugreek into lentil mixture. Cover saucepan and simmer until heated through, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes. Add cream and cook until heated through, 2 to 4 minutes.

Paneer Butter Masala
(Indian Curried Cheese)

250 grams paneer, cubed
3 tablespoons cashews
4 medium tomatoes, puréed (or 2 cups canned tomatoes, puréed)
1 green chili, sliced long
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 inch ginger, crushed or diced fine
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon kasuri methi (fenugreek leaves)
1 teaspoon garam masala
½ teaspoon red chili powder
3 tablespoons ghee or butter
1 cup water
¾ cup cream
cilantro to garnish
sugar, if required

Soak the cashews (time permitting) and then grind them with water into a smooth paste.

Heat the butter in a pan. Add bay leaf and fry for 15 seconds or until the oil becomes fragrant. Add the crushed ginger and garlic paste and fry until the raw aroma disappears.

Add the tomato purée and stir well. Add the red chili powder after 2 or 3 minutes and stir again. Sauté until the oil begins to separate from the tomato paste.

Add the cashew paste and stir well. Sauté the cashew paste until the oil begins to separate again.

Add the water and cream, and stir, turning the heat low. Add the green chili, salt, and sugar, and simmer until the curry begins to thicken.

Add the paneer cubes and cook them for a few minutes, until they become soft. (Don't overcook: the paneer can become too tough.)

Finally, add the fenugreek leaves and garam masala. Stir, and garnish with cilantro.

Pumpkin Pancakes

1½ cups milk (1¾ if using any whole wheat flour)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 egg
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cups flour
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground allspice (or cloves and nutmeg)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon salt

In a bowl, mix together milk, pumpkin, egg, oil, and lemon juice. Combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, allspice, cinnamon, ginger, and salt in a separate bowl. Stir into the pumpkin mixture just enough to combine. Spoon onto hot oiled griddle or frying pan on medium heat.

Shortbread Cookies

½ cup corn starch
½ cup icing sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup butter, softened
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Sift together cornstarch, icing sugar, and flour. With a wooden spoon, blend in butter until soft, smooth dough forms.

Shape into one-inch balls. (If the dough is too soft to handle, chill for half an hour.) Alternatively, roll out the dough to ¼ inch thickness and cut into shapes with cookie cutters.

Place the cookies 1½ inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 300˚F for 15–20 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned.

Apple Crisp

(Note: This recipe has been updated! Click here for the new version.)

7–10 Granny Smith apples
½ teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons flour

1 cup brown sugar
1 cup flour
1 cup oats
1 cup cold butter or margarine

Core, peel, and slice the apples into a 9x13 pan. In a bowl, mix the cinnamon with 3 tablespoons each sugar and flour. Pour into the pan, and mix well with the apples.

In a bowl, mix the brown sugar, flour, and oats, and slice in the butter. Avoid getting the butter too warm or over-mixing. Spread the topping over the apples and bake uncovered at 350˚F for 45 minutes.

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