Have I lost you already?!? I can imagine that some friends and family have not even made it to this line, they saw “curry” and bypassed the email. “What’s she thinking?” then… “DELETE!” . My (Sicilian) father probably shut down his whole computer.
…but if you are here – Welcome!
Curries have become Britain’s national dish! Did you know that? Not meat pies, mushy peas or fish and chips! Nope. Everyone “goes for a Curry” over there; after a night of drinking, before a night of drinking, during a night of drinking lol… Curry in Britain has become as common and beloved as pasta and pizza for us. Everyone, even little old English ladies are making it at home on the regular. On the other hand, in my circle here in Montreal, I know people who claim they break out into a sweat when they eat it and some find the smell intoxicating (not in a good way) As comedian Sugar Sammy would say “ça sent les épices” (It smells like spices) 😀 So, where’s the disconnect here? For me, I’d say its an acquired taste because Indian cuisine feels so very far away from the European flavours I am accustomed to. We’re getting better though; our millennials are way more open and adventurous with food and why not? There’s a lot of great cuisines out there.
So, I was on a mission! Like my once deep dislike of green beans; I couldn’t handle being one of the very few that didn’t like them! So I ate them until I did! Or what about the times I said, with such finality, ” Sushi?! I will never put a piece of raw fish in my mouth!” hmmm, we all know that was an absurd statement. So I figure, if all of Britain is in love with curry, then I want to love it too. So after years of trying it here and there, I finally get the allure. The vibrant spices, the heat, the comforting textures, the variety… it’s very exciting. Now I crave it every once in a while. My favourites are the milder yellow curries, especially those containing coconut milk. The cravings sneak up on you; you start with a little of that irresistible Naan bread and a little butter chicken or chicken Korma over white rice and then the next thing you know, you can’t get it off your mind.
So speaking of dishes you won’t be able to get off your mind, here is my very delicious recipe for a vegetable Curry, inspired by my friend, Claudia P (who I affectionately refer to as Claudia Jr. because we also hang around with Claudia A , another of my muses, who is slightly older) I digress….
This dish is saucy, creamy and a little spicy. The cauliflower, potato and chickpeas are soft, warm and comforting. Serve over white rice if desired and definitely serve with warm Naan bread!
Yes, you’ve entered Carb Town, sorry.
Serves 4 if serving with rice.
- 1 small head of Cauliflower cut into very small flowerets
- 1 small/medium russet potato, peeled and cubed (about an inch-square)
- 1 can of chick peas , 19fl oz/540ml , drained and rinsed
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1 inch peice of ginger , minced (optional)
- 2 Roma tomatoes roughly chopped (or a couple of canned tomatoes)
- 3/4 can coconut milk, 14fl oz/414ml, stirred
- 2 generous tbsp medium yellow curry powder, or to taste
- 2 tbsp Thai red curry paste, or to taste (add gradually, its spicy)
- 1 tsp of cumin or to taste
- 1/2 tsp of tumeric for color enhancment but more for the amazing health benefits 😉
- 1 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil for sautéing
- aprox 1 cup water, to loosen the sauce for simmering
- Chopped fresh cilantro as garnish. Chop up the stems too and set apart from leaves.
“To Taste” You may have noticed, for my quanities, I put the suggested amount but added “to taste” at the end. This is because you can adjust this to your liking. Maybe you like the cumin flavor to be very pronounced or you don’t want your curry to be very spicy. I created this recipe by adding and tasting, until it was perfect for me.
Wash + chop your vegetables. Cauliflower should be cut into small flowerets, potatoes should be cut into small cubes about 1/2 inch sq.
Quickly par-boil potato cubes in salted water and drain. They must remain firm but edible.
If you are sensitive to chick peas, boil for 10 minutes and drain.
Add a little water to loosen the stew at this point and throughout the process – about 1/4 cup at a time until vegetables are very tender.About 1 cup total or more if you prefer your curries to be more liquid.
Great Indian restaurant in Montreal: Rasoi
Because we were on the subject of Britain, here’s a fun site that lists the British terms for every day things :