Posts Tagged ‘curry’

June 2010 Food Blog Round Up

Monday, July 5th, 2010

At Chocolate & Zucchini, there is a delicious sounding recipe for sablés from Yves Camdeborde’s book Dimanche et Famille.  Clotilde Dusolier’s blog then sent me around various links on her site to several other biscuit recipes that sound fantastical, with amazing flavour combinations like Matcha Shortbread Cookies (which remind me I must do something about launching my green tea salt blend) and sablés croquants poivre et noisette (crisp hazelnut and pepper sablés), which has a wondrous flavour combination of pepper, rose water and hazelnuts that must be skirting fairly close to flavour and textural overload for the senses.  Finally, catching the end of the them of my update from last month, there is a recipe for a Rhubarb Tart With Lemon Verbena, combining another intriguing version of sweet pastry dough, plus my favourite early fruit – rhubarb – and then lemon verbena, which sounds great as a variant on lemon peel which is what I would usually use as the tart flavour for stewing the rhubarb.

At Cook Sister, there is a variation on the standard summer veg tarts that I have always cooked, called a Zucchini, Tomato Pesto Tart, which fits neatly alongside the French Tomato Tart that I found at David Lebovitz’s blog last month.  I will have a go and see if it will fit into my repertoire, even though I am not a fan of pesto, which I find tends to add an unnecessary hint of bitterness to food.  She also played with pesto for an Asparagus Salad With Pesto, which sounds an intriguing variation on the simple way we normally eat asparagus, sprinkled with a bit of salt and some butter.

At David Lebovitz’s blog, who seems to be suffering from the heat in Paris (my body temperature gauge falls apart when the temperature gets above 10oC, which is one of the reasons I failed to like living in London), he has a delicious and easy sounding Almond Cake recipe.  We like the words “easy” and phrase “hard to mess up”, but I’ll give that statement a run for its money.

Helen at Fuss Free Flavours is a women with my style of cooking, with a different way of preparing asparagus that I will definitely try next asparagus season.  A year, however, sounds a long wait for it, so I will try and rootle out some asparagus that’s still just about in season here in the north.  I think the mix of the slightly charred taste will go well with the bitter-sweet flavour of asparagus.  And she serves plain and simple with salt and butter; perfection.  And I love the idea of making your Elderflower Cordial on Midsummer Night like some sort of new age pagan ritual, plus it is basically free food that earths you to the soil.  And while never a fan of tofu, I am a fan of Ottolenghi so I will try the Black Pepper Tofu recipe although I might reduce the chile and increase the black pepper a bit as our kids will never survive that intensity of heat.

At just the food blog, there is a great and wholesome Cold Multigrain Salad that will make you a lifetime of food for lunches during the week.  And it has  next to no calories to boot.  It mixes three grains – pearl barley, wild rice and quinoa – and in the dressing melds together the umami kick of soy, with the uber sweetness of agave and cider with the heat from some chile flakes.  I reckon you could do a neat variation switching pearl barley for bulgur wheat.

Mahanandi’s recipe for Bean Sprout and Peppers makes great use of the bean sprouts that we have been growing over the last few weeks, and does something more exciting than chomping on them raw or in a salad.  I reckon that I would put a few different types of bean sprout into the mix, for example sprouted fenugreek seeds and chickpea seeds to give it more variation in texture.  And I love the colours and taste of aubergine (a.k.a. eggplant or brinjal) and the recipe for Brinjal Cilantro will get on the list for our next full on Indian meal as we are always struggling with inspiration for new flavours, rather than being unadventurous and sticking to the familiar.  When our tomatoes come out, I will have a crack at the simple Green Tomato Chutney recipe.

At Not Without Salt, there is a great Perfect Pizza At Home recipe, which is great fun family food.  I usually start by making the pizza dough and tomato base, then let the kids finish it off, so you get a random flavour, but one also that the children cannot complain about as it was their creation in first place!  I would be tempted to use a 50:50 mix of durum and bread flour rather than 100% all-purpose flour (plain flour in UK).  At Dana Treat, there’s a perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe that’s worth noting as it was created with Ashley of Not Without Salt.

The theme for summer seems to be coming through as galettes and tarts, so at Smitten Kitchen there’s a gorgeous sounding Zucchini and Ricotta Galette plus some great links through to earlier galettes with the Wild Mushroom And Blue Silton one from 2006 winning a place in my dream for a new take on my classic summer tart recipes.  Her Lamb Chops With Pistachio Tapenade caught my hungry eyes and is tempting me to cook some up next weekend, yet I might be tempted to try a version with toasted pine nuts – maybe 50:50.

At The Pioneer Woman Cooks, I love the sound of Spinach With Garlic Chips as a variant on our stock in trades of Spinach With Nutmeg or Spinach With Toasted Cumin.  And The Best Coffee Cake Ever reminds me that I started trying to find the best coffee cake ever and stopped after one average attempt…laziness crept in and I must get back to it, although I was looking for a coffee flavoured cake not a cake for afternoon tea or coffee time, although the Mystery Mocha pud gets closer to the flavours I am after for my dream coffee cake.

Another great recipe from Ottolenghi was posted at The Wednesday Chef of a variation on potato salad – Potato Salad With Yoghurt And Horseradish.  Yotam Ottolenghi is certainly on message for recipes with everyone at the moment, and I love the idea of adding some tartness to potato salad which can get a bit samey.  We often use a mayonnaise-yoghurt-horseradish mix for smoked fish and crab salads and this sort of fits into that vein. 

As I wonder through [sic – I spelled this incorrectly first time round and I like the metaphor] the food blogosphere I am constantly surprised at the new ways of tweaking some of my old favourites in our kitchen, reinspiring me to recreate and revisit things like the summer vegetable tarts that I have make for years now, as well as to try and improve on the trusty old pastry recipes that I have made since my mum taught me how to bake oh-too-long-ago. 

But I am in awe at how beautiful everyone else’s creations look and how great their photography is, while my food looks like a dog’s dinner and the photos like some amateur hack from a one horse dorp (which I suppose I am).  We’ll get better at it, but I can never expect to reach the dizzy heights of the wonderful photos on blogs like Cannelle et Vanille, Mahanandi,  or The Pioneer Woman Cooks and The Wednesday Chef.

Steenbergs Launches New Design For Spice Tins

Friday, February 5th, 2010

At Steenbergs, we have been doing a lot of work trying to refresh parts of our organic spices and seasonings range.  Now we have relaunched our spice tins into a bright new label and an elegant rolled tin.

Steenbergs new spice tins

Steenbergs new spice tins

Part of what we have been seeking to do is to pull out parts of our long list of spices and seasonings that can either sit as a standalone range, such as our Home Bakery products (which we relaunched in August 2009), or added value blends that differentiate Steenbergs in the spices and seasonings world. 

We have a range of over 200 blends that we make in small batches by hand which is way more than industrial spice blenders and packers can hope to do – they just don’t have the ability to work on small batch runs nor the inclination.

So during 2009 we redesigned the spice tin, which was originally a spice dabbah made for us in Mumbai in India, to a rolled tin that is now being made for us in China.  This new tin was launched in mid 2009 and looks much smarter and more elegant than the old tin that we felt was a bit shiny and the shapes of the actual dabbahs were inconsistent.

In the latter part of 2009 and through to early 2010, we have created a new look label for a few of our most popular blends – Steenbergs Signature Blends.  These labels are brightly coloured, individual for each seasoning and now include a recipe idea.

The labels were printed last week and are now launched on the web site and will be officially launched at the forthcoming Organic & Natural Products Show at Olympia in April 2010. 

They have great shelf presence and we expect to add maybe another 5 – 10 more over the next 2 years.  The blends that are currently available are:

Organic Fairtrade 4 colour pepper
Organic Fairtrade curry powder
(a new blend!)
Organic Fairtrade garam masala
Organic Harissa with Rose Petals
Organic Herbes de Provence
Organic Italian Herbs

Organic Mixed Herbs
Ras al hanut
Zaatar

Tell us what you think, and what other Steenbergs products we should add to this range of Signature Blends – I am thinking China 5 Spice, Dukkah, Jamaican Jerk and Mexican Chile Powder.

Recipe for Lamb Curry for a Diwali Feast

Sunday, October 18th, 2009

We are in the middle of the diwali festival, the Festival of Lights.  This is a 5 day festival with the main celebration being on the 17 October this year.  I love diwaali, even though we are not Hindus here.

I love what it stands for, its legends and the idea of having a fun festival rather than the sobre festivals of British christianity (even if we all go home after church and indulge a bit).  I love the practicality of being able to pray for wealth and making puja to Lakshmi, rather than the embarassed about wanting to pray and hope for profit.

We always celebrate diwaali with friends – none of us are Hindu – but we like the smells and the food and the music of India.  We have got some traditional Indian decorations including icons of my favourite Ganesha with his large tummy and his delight in the finer things of life.  My granny gave me an old ivory Ganesha from colonial India as well as a buxom Lakshmi, both of which I treasure.  My maternal grandmother, Gromi as I called her, was German and the Lakshmi was the only item that she retrieved from her bombed house after the war; the Russian troops had used it as a candle stick and it was covered all over in wax, so the looters had thought it of no worth.

Then we have the wall hangings, door hangings and bells and lights and candles and lamps and so on.  And there is the food.

I have been cooking every evening this week.  We will be having Keralan fish and prawn curry, homemade chicken tikka, Punjabi lamb curry, dhal, saag aloo, Gujerati green beans, as well as breads, samosas, bhajis and sweets galore.

But the best part is friends.  They are the flowers in the garden of life.  We are celebrating with our dearest friends in our village, and we can all let the light, food and light shine in and home the gold will glister our futures.  It is a time to forget the hassles of life, throw off the stresses and strains of the daily grind and overindulge and believe that love conquers all.

Thank you and praise to Rama and Sita, and Hanuman, Ganesha and Lakshmi.

Here’s how I made the lamb curry:

20g fresh ginger, peeled and chopped finely
8 garlic cloves (peeled and chopped finely)
3tbsp organic vegetable oil
2 whole organic green cardamoms
2 whole black cardamoms (optional as a bit harder to get, but see https://steenbergs.co.uk/)
5 curry leaves (or 1 bay leaf)
1 large onion, peeled and chopped finely
750-800g diced lamb
½tsp organic Fairtrade turmeric powder
1tbsp organic coriander powder
1tsp Fairtrade organic garam masala
½ tsp sea salt
4 medium tomatoes, pureed, or a tin of chopped tomatoes
500ml water
Handful of fresh coriander leaves (cilantro), chopped finely

Put the ginger and garlic in a pestle, with a teaspoon of water and mash to  a paste with a mortar.  Alternatively, you can use a small coffee grinder.

Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.  Add the cardamoms, curry leaves (or bay leaf) and stir fry for 15 seconds, then add in the onion.  Turn the heat down a bit and fry the onions until translucent and just turning brown at the edges; this will take about 7 minutes.

Now add the lamb cubes and stir fry for 3 or so minutes, then add the ginger-garlic paste, spices and salt.  Cook until the mixture is dry; this takes about 2 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, bring to the boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.  Add the water, bring to the boil, then lower the heat; cover and simmer for 45 minutes.  Stir occasionally to ensure it does not stick, and add any water if you need to.

Just before serving, add the chopped coriander leaves and stir in.

Recipe: Coronation Chicken

Sunday, June 7th, 2009

In Saturday’s The Daily Telegraph (6 June 2009), one of our great fans, Rose Prince, explains how to make a real Coronation Chicken.  I must admit that I hadn’t realised that it was invented by Constance Spry for our Queen’s Coronation in 1953 to feed 300 Royal invitees.  Rose Prince explains how to make Coronation chicken that doesn’t look (and taste) like gloop and links Steenbergs Madras curry powder as the curry powder of choice – perhaps we should rename it Coronation curry powder.

Follow the link to: 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/recipes/5428598/The-real…-Coronation-Chicken.html.

and for the Steenbergs organic Madras curry powder…

https://steenbergs.co.uk/product/169/madras-curry-powder-organic

Recipes – An Indian Feast of Food

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

This is an Indian feast that I first put together as a demonstration for Yorkshire Ladies.  It requires a bit of preparation but is surprisingly quick to finish off.  The key is to make the Masala Gravy beforehand, divide it into smaller amounts and then to freeze it, and to marinade and pre-cook the Tandoori chicken bites the day before or in the morning.  We make a quick version of the Meen Papas regularly which I will explain in a subsequent post.

Masala gravy

 

110g ghee (sunflower oil, if cannot get this)

 150g garlic cloves, finely chopped

110g ginger, finely chopped

1kg strong onions, chopped

600ml water

250g masala paste, using Steenbergs organic Madras Curry Powder 

 

1.       Add 50ml water to 200g of Steenbergs curry powder and stir to thick paste.  Add a little more water if you want to.

2.       Heat ghee in a wok and stir fry the garlic and ginger for 2 minutes.  Lower the heat and add onions.  Don’t add all onions at once as they will reduce down in size as they cook.  Continue stir-frying until the onions become caramelized.

3.       Add the water, then using a hand blender or in a blender mash up the mixture to a smooth puree.

4.       Add the curry paste to the gravy and stir in.  Boil for about 10 minutes on a gentle simmer. 

5.       Take off the heat and put into 3 pots of equal size and freeze.

 

Red marinade

 

150g natural yoghurt

2tbsp vegetable oil

2tbsp lime juice

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 fresh red chillies (or fewer if you’re feeling nervous)

2tbsp fresh coriander leaves

1tsp organic cumin seeds, roasted

1tsp organic garam masala, roasted

2tbsp organic tandoori powder

½tsp organic chaat masala 

 

1.       Add a little water to the Steenbergs garam masala and tandoori powder and mix to paste.

2.       Put the paste and all ingredients into a blender and puree

 

Marinaded chicken

 

20 4cm cubes of skinned chicken breast

200g red marinade (½ the mixture above) 

 

1.       Put the chicken breasts into a non-metallic bowl and pour over the red marinade.  Mix well and leave in fridge for 24 hours.

2.       Preheat grill to medium (or ideally use a barbecue).  Skewer the chicken cubes and put on grill pan.  Grill for 5 minutes on each side.  Check that the meat has cooked through.  If it hasn’t grill for a little longer.

 

Chicken tikka masala

 

20 cooked chicken tikka pieces

2tbsp ghee

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

225g onions, very finely chopped

2 ladles curry masala gravy

1½tbsp organic tandoori masala paste

6 canned tomatoes

1tbsp white vinegar

1tbsp tomato ketchup

175ml canned tomato soup

½ green bell pepper

4 green chillies, chopped

100ml single cream

1tbsp garam masala

1tbsp fresh coriander, chopped

½ tsp chaat masala

 

1.       Heat oil in wok and stir fry garlic and onions until golden brown.

2.       Add pastes and gravy and cook for 2 minutes.  Add all other ingredients and cook for 5 minutes.  Add chicken pieces and cook for a further 5 minutes.

 

Meen pappas

 

400g white fish

2 tomatoes, quartered

1 onion, sliced

20 curry leaves

2 green chillis

2.5cm ginger sliced

½ tsp turmeric

¼ tsp chilli powder

400ml coconut milk

1tbsp lemon juice

1tbsp vinegar

½ tsp salt

 

1.       Cut fish into cubes 

2.       Heat oil in frying pan.  Add tomatoes, onion, curry leaves, green chillis and ginger.  Cook for 5 minutes.  Add turmeric and chilli powder.  Add coconut milk and simmer for 5 minutes.

3.       Add fish and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

4.       Add lemon juice and vinegar.

 

French beans with cumin and tomatoes

 

2tbsp oil

3 – 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 onion, finely chopped

1tsp cumin seeds, lightly roasted and crushed

¼ tsp chilli powder

250g slender French beans, trimmed

2 tomatoes, chopped

1tbsp fresh coriander leaves

1tsp chaat masala

 

1.       Heat oil in a wok.  Add garlic, onion and cumin and cook for 2 minutes.  Add chilli powder.  Cook until onions start going opaque.  Add beans and stir fry.  Cook for 2 – 3 minutes.  Add some salt and the tomatoes.  Checked if cooked.  Sprinkle over with Steenbergs chaat masala.

2.       Beans should be crunchy but you can add some water and make softer.

Indian pepper chicken recipe

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

This recipe really should have been posted closer to the blog on black pepper.

 

500g                 Chicken, cut into bite sized pieces

2 cloves            Garlic, smashed and chopped

2cm                  Fresh ginger, grated

4tbsp                Sunflower oil

2                              Onions, sliced

12                           Curry leaves

½                     Green chilli and remove seeds

1tsp                  Coriander seeds

½tsp                 Turmeric

225ml               Vegetable stock (Steenbergs organic vegetable bouillon powder)

1tsp                  Steenbergs garam masala

½tsp                 Freshly milled Indian black pepper

½tsp                 Natural sea salt

 

Dry fry (or brown in the oven) the coriander seeds, then grind them in a pestle and mortar or electric coffee grinder.  Add the garlic and ginger and mash to a paste.

 

Heat the oil in a larger frying pan.  Add the onions, curry leaves and green chilli and cook until the onions become translucent.

 

Add the seasoning paste and cook for 3 minutes, then add turmeric and a pinch of sea salt.  Mix well and cook for a further 5 minutes.  Add the chicken, stir through.  Add the stock and the garam masala.  Cover and cook for 5 minutes on a gentle heat or until the chicken is cooked through.  Stir the ground pepper into the mixture and serve with boiled rice and dhal.