October 15, 2012
A busy week meant I kept this dish very simple. It’s the perfect midweek supper. Lots of flavour and ready in less than half an hour. Green beans were the starting point then spuds for bulk and finally cherry tomatoes (colourwise I couldn’t resist!!!) completed the dish.
The fire and heat come from the chili and ginger then for the Indian flavour it’s equal parts coriander powder and turmeric and 1/2 the amount again of cumin seeds. It’s a mix that works with any veg and obviously you can dial the heat up or down by using as much chili as you want. Dried works just fine as well.
A simple curry with green beans and potatoes
Coconut vegetable oil
1 thumbsize piece ginger peeled and finely chopped
4 heads garlic finely sliced
1/2 red chilli chopped (remove some or all of the seeds if you don’t like things too hot)
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
200gr (1about 12 cherry tomatoes )
About 300 ml vegetable stock
200gr green beans
With this recipe you need to have everything ready to go before you start so it’ s a little different to most of my recipes where you throw on an onion and mooch around preparing everything else as it gently fries. This one is more on the fast and furious side. You can do it as you go but you’ll need to be fast. The upside is that the dish is ready in about 20 minutes and you can’t say that about a lot of curries (well, mine anyway).
Right, so to get going have the garlic, ginger and chilli prepared as described above. Peel the potatoes and chop into large bitesize pieces. Wash the tomatoes and cut in half. That should do it for now.
Heat a generous dollop of coconut oil on the pan. Add the garlic, ginger and chilli and gently fry for a minute or two before adding the spices along with a generous pinch of salt. Fry for another minute then add the tomatoes. Gently cook for a couple of minutes before adding the potatoes and the stock. Cook over a gentle heat for about 10 minutes and while this is happening wash, top and tail your beans. Now would also be a good time to put on your rice if you’re having some. Add the beans to the pan. Cook for a further 6 -7 minutes until the beans and spuds are tender. Serve with rice and/or naan bread. This recipe will easily feed 2-3 hungry people, 4-5 if you serve it with some daal.
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September 11, 2009
We might be enjoying a bit of sun at the moment but there’s no denying that summer (well what we had of it) is drawing to a close. We still have lots of summer produce – gorgeous Tomatoes, Courgettes, Grapes and Aubergines but the early autumn stuff is making it’s way into the bags – Butternut a few weeks ago, today there’s lovely new Leeks and Damsons or Quetsche Plums to give them their full title. If you haven’t had them before, Damsons are plums that are generally used for cooking because they aren’t as sweet as the plums we normally eat.
This week’s recipe is for a crumble with almonds. If you’re not a baker don’t worry, crumble-making doesn’t really count as baking as it’s just so easy. You literally crumble the flour, butter and sugar with your fingertips until you have something resembling large breadcrumbs. Even if you end up with something different it’ll still taste fine just as long as some attempt has been made to mix the ingredients. My son Dan (4) does all the crumbling in our house except of course when I have him polishing grapes for Home Organics (just kidding!!!). If you’re avoiding puds Damsons are a perfect stewing fruit. Rinse and put in a pot with 2-3 Tablespoons Sugar. Turn on the heat and give the pot an occasional shake to help the Damsons burst and release all their lovely juices. As you’ll see, these Damson are yellow on the inside but the skin colours everything that gorgeous plummy red after they’ve been the pot a few minutes.
Cook for about 10 minutes making sure all the plums break up so you can get at the stones afterwards. Allow to cool down a bit before you remove the stones and you’ve got a compote which makes a perfect breakfast with Greek Yogurt. This week’s crumble won’t take more than 15 minutes to put together so if you do fancy dessert it’s an easy one and really tasty to boot….
Damson and Almond Crumble
450 gr Plums (about what you have in this week’s bag)
3 Tablespoons of Sugar
40gr Ground Almonds
Prepare the fruit as I’ve described above and while it’s cooking get on with the crumble (or rope in a small child to do so). Put all the ingredients in a bowl and crumble (!!) This should take about 5 minutes (small children will take anything from 2 minutes to an hour and a half). Remove all the stones from the fruit and put into a baking dish and top with the crumble mix. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the crumble topping is golden brown and hopefully some of the ruby juices from below have bubbled up and speckled the topping. Eat with Cream, Ice-cream or Yogurt.
One other thing to do with Damsons is Damson Gin. Far easier than baking but there is a bit of waiting involved. Most recipes will tell you to prick the plums, add sugar then throw in the booze but Margaret (no doubt reliably) informed me yesterday that the stones in Plums contain cyanide so should never be left after the fruit has been cooked or opened. So, rinse and halve about 450gr plums (what you have in this week’s bag) then add 150gr Sugar and 75cl Gin. Put the lot in a sterilized wide-necked bottle. Close the lid and shake well and continue to shake every day until the sugar has dissolved. Keep for at least 6 weeks and then it’s cocktail time!
This week’s Green Beans need very little done to them. A light steaming then toss them in Butter or Olive Oil with a little Maldon Salt. A step further is to crush or finely chop a couple of cloves of Garlic, saute gently on the pan then add the precooked Beans just before the Garlic is done. Toss for a minute or 2 more and you’ve got a very tasty side. Lot’s of Black Pepper is great with this too.
In case you’re wondering..
This week’s salad leaves are Rocket a beautiful peppery leaf that is great in salads and sambos. Have it with this week’s Cherry Tomatoes and some Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar for a very quick and tasty salad.
Have a great weekend,