I’m afraid my new theme is becoming tardiness, for which I feel I must once again apologize. I’m really aiming to get on a plan of updating once a week – I will hopefully pick a day and make sure it happens!
And now: a common staple in my apartment at school is curry. I had several disastrous attempts at making dal that involved continuously adding more curry (it started out bland, and so my roommate and I kept dosing it to make it spicier), which did not end well. It seems that curry tends to increase its flavor when it’s stored overnight in the fridge, leading to an almost mouth-burning sensation. Fortunately, this doesn’t seem to be an issue with this recipe. Fantastic the first night it’s made, it’s equally good reheated a second time for leftovers. It comes from the excellent Moosewood kitchen, and is virtually foolproof (unless, as I did the first time, you accidentally confuse your curry and your roommate’s brewer’s yeast, ahem). There are an endless number of possibilities that can be used to tweak this recipe as you see fit. Delicious and full of good vegetables, this is a fantastic vegetarian meal that will be appetizing for vegetarians (myself) and non-vegetarians (my roommate) alike.
I originally made this recipe without the vegetables that Moosewood calls for; their use of vegetables is probably more within the Indian and Southeast Asian tradition, but as I said, the options are pretty much endless with this one.
I also think that if you are looking into investing (not a large chunk of change) into a cookbook, this is a great one, especially if you are a vegetarian. While there are some fish recipes in this cookbook, nothing else has meat in it. The recipes are healthy, delicious, and generally, extremely easy and quick to make. As a college student, I’ve found a number of recipes to cook in here that are reasonably inexpensive but are still full of good nutritional value and taste. Moosewood makes several other cookbooks (I own one other one, although I’ve been unbelievably lazy since I came home) that I suspect are also really excellent resources, but as I don’t use them, I couldn’t tell you for sure. It’s definitely been important to me as a vegetarian to find good cookbooks that aren’t overly expensive. There are some cookbooks that I desperately wish I could own, but don’t really want to invest in right now. Furthermore, when I started looking at cookbooks for my apartment last year, I had a very tough time finding a good vegetarian cookbook (everyone seems to think that all vegetarians like beans, and I’m sorry, but I think they are completely disgusting, as a general rule), but like I said, there are a number of great recipes in this particular cookbook. (Now that I’m done shamelessly plugging for Moosewood, can I get my commission from them?!)
Curried Fried Rice (Adapted from Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home)
Splash of olive oil
4 large eggs
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tbsp (or more, as you see fit) curry powder
1 large head of broccoli, rinsed and separated into smaller pieces
2-3 large carrots, chopped into round sections
1 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 -2 cups brown rice
3-4 cups water
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp fresh lime juice
In a small pot, bring water and rice to a boil, then allow to simmer (You may want to use something like Uncle Ben’s Instant Rice here, although I’ve been buying my rice in bulk and find it takes about thirty to forty minutes to cook fully) until the water evaporates.
Add a splash of olive oil to a small frying pan and heat over medium heat. Meanwhile, whisk the four eggs together in a small bowl. When the pan is warm, add the eggs and allow to cook, as you would an omelet. You may need to lift up the sides of the omelet and allow excess egg to run underneath. When one side appears cooked, flip the omelet and allow the other side to cook. Set the omelet aside, wipe the pan clean, and set back on the stove.
Add another generous splash of olive oil to the pan and heat on moderate heat again. Add the chopped garlic and the curry powder to the olive oil and stir as the garlic begins to heat. If you are using onions, add them at this time to allow them to cook. When they start to become transparent, add the broccoli and the carrots. Allow these to cook for several minutes, or until they become tender and are well coated in the curry mixture. While the vegetables are cooking, cut the omelet into strips or chunks. Once the vegetables are tender, add the egg and the rice. Stir in the soy sauce and lime juice. Adjust any flavors as necessary. Consider serving with chapatis!