Thursday, April 26, 2012
hungry thursday, mega edition: curry in a hurry
One of my favourite store-cupboard dinners is a curry. They are fab for using up any vegetables that are past their prime and you can literally have one ready in about 30 minutes. Get your rice cooker on the go too and everything will be ready at the same time!
Cauliflower is one of my favourite vegetables to use in a curry. If you have more time, I'd recommend dusting the raw cauliflower with turmeric and cumin and then roast it in the oven, serving it alongside the chickpeas and rice - it takes on such a lovely depth of flavour.
I've recently become a convert to buying dried chickpeas and cooking them up in giant batches to freeze. It is SO much cheaper - a 500g bag of dried chickpeas costs about 72p in my local supermarket, which is about the same price as a can of cooked chickpeas that yields maybe 2 cups if you're lucky. It's a bit of a fiddle, and the scum that comes off the top is a bit scary (!), but if you have the time it is really worth the effort. And they really do taste so much nicer than the canned ones! I bought three 500g bags, soaked them on Saturday and cooked them all up on Sunday - I made hummus, a soup, a curry and then froze the rest which I've been able to just grab out as I need them to make more hummus and curries. Brilliant!
Quick cauliflower and chickpea curry
Makes 4 decent servings
Olive oil or cooking spray
1 large onion (or leek), finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
A bit of fresh ginger, grated
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
1 medium head cauliflower, chopped into bite sized pieces
4 cups cooked chickpeas
3 tablespoons Indian korma curry paste
Vegetable stock and/or coconut milk to cover
Kale, spinach or any leafy green vegetable
Fresh lemon juice, to garnish
Cooked brown rice or quinoa, to serve
Heat the olive oil or cooking spray in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and ground turmeric. Cook until soft and the spices are fragrant. You could also add a diced green chilli here if you like it really hot!
Add the cauliflower, chickpeas and curry paste; stir until everything is evenly coated and combined. Add enough vegetable stock and/or coconut milk to cover - about 4 cups, but judge this for yourself - you don't want it to be like a soup, just enough liquid to cover the chickpeas and to cook the cauliflower. Bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for about 15 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender. Add kale/spinach and replace the lid. Cook for a few more minutes until the green vegetables are wilted. Stir and taste for seasoning.
Spoon into bowls with rice and squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the top (this really makes it!).
And there you are - a healthy, filling and tasty dinner in hardly any time at all :)