Posts Tagged 'curry'

Curry Chickpea Salad Sandwiches

This is the first real summer I’ve experienced in two years, and the heat is taking some getting used to.  I ADORE 90+ degree temperatures, but it’s definitely been an adjustment in terms of cooking and working out.

I really would rather not turn the house into a sauna by turning the oven on, so I’ve been steering clear of any recipes that involve roasting or baking.  These sandwiches involve zero cooking of any kind, which is pretty awesome when the temperature is approaching triple digits.

I was a little scared of running in the heat, so I did every single run before 7 AM until yesterday, when a friend was in town and asked if I wanted to run at 4:30 PM.  It was 90 degrees but the run actually felt really good! We took it easy and covered 4 miles.  Definitely bringing water next time, though.


Speaking of working out, we just joined a new gym and I’m super excited about it.  I’m sort of in a weird place right now with running and working out… I don’t start training for CIM until September, and I’m also DYING to train for a triathlon (I haven’t done one since 2008!)  I completely slacked on any sort of strength training for far too long, so lately I’ve been doing Zuzana Light workouts on Youtube.  If you can get past the slightly porn-ish vibe, they’re awesome and I definitley feel stronger.

Back to the sandwiches: the filling is a delicious mix of chickpeas, cucumber, red onion and mango bound with yogurt and a little mayo (you could probably just do all yogurt with great results), flavored with curry powder and ginger.  Ellie loves it and we do too.


Potato and Tempeh Curry with Cucumber-Ginger Raita

First things first, my husband is an amazingly easy person to cook for.  Pretty much anything I set down in front of him, he’ll eat.  When he asks what’s for dinner and I tell him it’s lentils or chard or vegan or full of nutritional yeast, he generally replies with something along the lines of “cool, sounds good.”

But sometimes, there’s a comment a little like this.

“Um, Cate? I really appreciate that you cook amazing dinners every night.  But is there any way we could maybe have a dinner that doesn’t include kale?”

I have to admit, I did go a little overboard with kale recently.  So I planned a whole week of things I knew he’d love: sandwiches, spinach lasagna, loaded baked sweet potatoes, and curry.  The man LOVES him some curry.

He also loves chocolate chip cookies, and since Tuesday was national chocolate chip cookie day, I finally got around to trying Alton Brown’s “The Chewy

I’m not sure if they were the best chocolate chip cookies ever, but they were VERY good.  I love that the recipe is written with ingredients by weight, because I’m fully obsessed with using my food scale.  I am ready to make another batch!

This curry recipe came from JAMES BEARD AWARD WINNER Heidi Swanson, but I decided to leave the potatoes in chunks, and I added a basic cucumber-ginger-lime raita on the side (I also served it all over quinoa).  Kale-free, Mike-pleasing, and delicious, plus it makes enough for plenty of leftovers for lunch!


(adapted from 101 cookbooks)

Curried Lentils with Potatoes

There are certain necessities in life.

You need to go to coffee on the weekend. Preferably with a cute baby strapped to you.

You need to bring that cute baby to meet someone awesome. Like Joy the Baker!

The line may stretch down the block, but it’s worth the wait.

Side note: I first met Joy when she was in San Luis Obispo waaay back in 2010. She was staying there for a couple days working on her cookbook and we got coffee. She so sweet and humble and funny, and it was really refreshing that she came across in person the same way she seems on her blog.

You need to get her book and make things! I am having the hardest time deciding what to make first, but I’m leaning towards vanilla bean snickerdoodles. Or maybe the peanut butter cake. Or maybe her grandma’s banana bread.

Or perhaps you just need some lentils. I doubled this recipe and we had a TON of leftovers for lunches, which is always a bonus.


(source: How To Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman)

Khao Soi

I really, really love Thai food. If I absolutely had to pick a single favorite dish, this might be it. It’s kind of hard to find outside Northern Thailand (except I’ve heard there’s a place in Oakland that has it – I MUST investigate!)

I wrote about it when we were in Chiang Mai two years ago, but I’ve only made it myself once. That time, it wasn’t awesome. This time I actually made it twice, at the same time: one pot with chicken for Mike and one pot with tofu for me.

It almost didn’t happen though. Our closest Asian grocery store (which is actually our closest grocery store, period) was OUT OF RED CURRY PASTE. So, being the ridiculous housewife that I am for the next couple months, I decided to make my own. It’s kind of a pain, because it means pounding stuff together in a giant mortar and pestle for what feels like an eternity, but it’s good because you can control exactly what goes into it and make sure there’s no shrimp paste (that stuff is NASTY). I used this Epicurious recipe.

The garnishes are absolutely essential for this. Without a squeeze of lime, thinly sliced shallots, and pickled mustard greens (any Asian grocery store should have these in a little vacuum-sealed pack or jar), this soup is just not the same. It really needs fried noodles, too, but after making my kitchen a disaster while I was making that curry paste, frying noodles just wasn’t going to happen.

If you’re going to make this vegetarian, drain, press, and fry your tofu beforehand. It will come together pretty quickly after that, so get everything ready to go. If you’re making it with chicken, I think it’s easiest to use drumsticks, but you can use whatever you want. It will take a little longer than the tofu version because the legs have to cook through.

(adapted from Chez Pim)

6 chicken legs OR 1 lb tofu, drained, press, and stir-fried until golden
2 tbsp vegetable oil
4 tbsp red curry Paste
1 tsp. curry powder
½ tsp. turmeric
3 cups full-fat coconut milk
1 cup vegetable stock
a pinch of sugar
fish sauce (or vegetarian fish sauce) to taste
8 ounces dried egg noodles

about 1/4 cup thinly sliced pickled mustard greens
4 shallots, thinly sliced
1 lime, cut into thin slices
fresh cilantro

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium high heat, then add the curry paste and fry until very fragrant, stirring constantly to make sure it doesn’t burn. Add the turmeric and curry powder.

Stir in the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Add sugar and fish sauce to taste Add the chicken or tofu and broth, turn heat down to a simmer, and cook, covered, until chicken is done (or for a few minutes if using tofu). Taste and adjust seasonings.

While the soup is simmering, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the noodles according to package directions.

Drain the noodles and put some in the bottom of each bowl. Ladle soup over the noodles, then serve along with the garnishes

Coconut Curry-Marinated Chicken

Yes, chicken. For the first time on this blog in over a year. I didn’t eat it, but I wanted to surprise Mike on Valentines Day and chicken was definitely a surprise. (Vegetarians…don’t abandon me yet, this marinade would be FANTASTIC with tofu!)

Only good things in the marinade: coconut milk, curry powder, turmeric, garlic, fish sauce (vegetarian fish sauce is obviously a great choice if you’re making this for tofu), and cilantro. Perfection.

I would like to take a moment now to show you once again why I live in California. I know this is obnoxious. This is a picture from my run on Saturday morning, when we were in San Luis Obispo.

And here’s another:

The giant downside here is that I planned to run 16 miles but Mike had to come pick me up after just over 8 because my stupid IT band was not cooperating. Only 8.5 weeks til Boston… I’m starting to get a little nervous. But I’m also starting to be WAY more militant about doing my exercises and stretches and icing every single day.

We went back to our old house (it’s actually 9 apartments) for a double birthday party this weekend and it was fantastic.

Clearly they had all the essentials, and I definitely ate more than my fair share of chips. It’s a good thing I never buy chips.

Happy Birthday Darryl!

My friend made a blueberry-topped cheesecake, and left one candle in it for good luck (I’d never heard that tradition before).

Okay so back to the chicken. I bought a package of 3 leg-thigh pieces. I’m not sure how much it weighed, but this was plenty of marinade. I would think it would be enough for 4 bone-in breasts as well, and it’s definitely easy to multiply if you’re making more.

I started it on the grill pan and finished it in a 425 degree oven until it was 165 degrees F (about 35 minutes). If you have a real barbecue it would be GREAT grilled, but this worked well too and Mike LOVED it. He said it had great flavors that reminded him of Thailand. Exactly what I was going for! I served it with Papaya Salad and Thai-Style fried rice made with onions and tomatoes.

Of course it all had to be served with sweet chili sauce!

(adapted from allrecipes)

3/4 cup coconut milk
2 tablespoons fish sauce (or vegetarian fish sauce if you’re cooking tofu…soy sauce might be OK too)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon curry powder
2-3 lbs chicken pieces

Mix the coconut milk, fish sauce, garlic, cilantro, turmeric, and curry powder together well, the pour over chicken and turn to coat. Marinate covered in the refrigerator for 2-8 hours.

Preheat a grill or grill pan (if using a grill pan, also preheat the oven to 425 F). Cook the chicken for about 5 minutes on each side, then transfer to an oven (or keep on the grill) until the internal temperature reaches 165 F. Serve with sweet chili sauce.

Cashew Curry

I am kind of in awe of how my blog’s following has grown over the past few months. For so long it seemed like nobody outside my immediate family and circle of friends read it, and even then it was only because I nagged them. But to all of you out there who come here and read what I have to say, THANK YOU!!! I really appreciate everyone who stops by, whether or not you leave comments (although I do LOVE comments!)

One of the perks of having more than a small handful of readers is that a few offers for free stuff start to trickle in. I generally have no interest in them (meat rubs? Um, I don’t eat meat), but when Oh Nuts offered to send me stuff, I couldn’t turn them down. I use nuts all the time! A few days after I responded to the email, these beauties showed up on my doorstep:

Raw cashews, pecans, macadamias, and almonds! Thank you so much, Oh Nuts! I picked raw nuts so I had the flexibility of using them raw or roasting them myself.

When I decided to use the cashews first, I googled a bit and found this recipe, which I instantly knew would be delicious. I changed a few things about the recipe — adding tomatoes and using light coconut milk rather than full-fat and water — and it was fabulous. I still haven’t gotten around to making my own curry powder, but it’s on my list of things to try!

(adapted from 101 Cookbooks)

1 1/2 cups light coconut milk
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 large red onion, chopped
1 large tomato, diced
2 medium garlic cloves, chopped
8 ounces extra firm tofu, cut into 1/2″ cubes and stir-fried until golden
2 cups green beans, cut into 1-inch segments
2-3 cups cauliflower florets
a pinch or two of cayenne pepper
1/2 cup cashews, toasted

Bring half a cup of the coconut milk to a simmer in a dutch oven over medium-high heat. Whisk in the curry powder and salt, then stir in the chopped red onion, garlic, and tomato and cook for about a minute.

Stir in the remaining coconut milk. Cook down the liquid for a couple minutes before adding the green beans,cauliflower and tofu. Cover and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the cayenne. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more salt, curry powder, or cayenne if necessary

Remove from heat and stir in the cashews.

Massaman Curry

While I was cooking, the smell of this curry brought back fond memories of the week and a half we spent in Bang Saphan Yai, Thailand. The family owned the collection of beach bungalows where we stayed made a different dinner each night we were there, and this curry was one of the best things I’d ever tasted in my life.

Massaman curry usually contains beef and potatoes, and is common in Southern Thailand. Most Thais who aren’t Muslim don’t eat beef, and I don’t anymore either, but I wanted to make a vegetarian (and healthier) version of this rich, spicy curry.

I started off by steaming chunks of sweet potato and acorn squash in a bamboo steamer, and also used tofu, broccoli, carrots, onions, and tomatoes. With light coconut milk, fresh curry paste and all those vegetables, it has great flavor without being too rich. I think next time I may use kabocha or butternut squash instead, because their texture is a little more solid.

1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1″ chuncks
1 small squash (acorn, kabocha, or butternut), cut into chunks and seeds removed
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tbsp Yellow Curry paste (you can also use store-bought, but I think homemade is better)
1 roma tomato, chopped
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 small head of broccoli, cut into florets
1/2 small yellow onion, diced
8 ounces extra firm tofu, drained, pressed, and cut into 1 cm cubes
1 16 ounce can light coconut milk
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp peanuts

Place the squash and potato chunks in a bamboo steamer over boiling water, and steam until tender (or cook in the microwave). Set aside. I think it’s easiest to keep the peel on the squash until it’s steamed, because it’s much easier to remove it after it has cooked.

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or heavy pot over medium-high. Add the curry paste and chopped tomato and stir-fry until very fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the broccoli, carrot, and onion and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

Stir in the curry powder, coconut milk, sugar, soy sauce, tofu, squash, and sweet potato, and let simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until the broccoli and carrots are tender.
While the curry is simmering, toast the peanuts in a dry skillet until golden brown. Cool, then chop.

Once the vegetables are tender, taste and adjust the seasonings, then ladle over rice and top with chopped peanuts.

Curried Butternut Soup

I happened to stumble across this recipe at the perfect time. I had a partially-used can of coconut milk in the fridge, and a forlorn butternut squash that had been sitting on the counter for over a week waiting for inspiration to strike. That, on top of the cold and rainy weather outside (which always makes me crave soups like this) sent me straight to the kitchen to get this soup on the stove.

The recipe called for chicken broth, so I decided to make my own vegetable broth to stand in for it. When it came time to strain the broth I realized the soup would probably benefit from having the onions and carrots pureed right along with the squash, so I just added the rest of the ingredients to my pot of broth, stuck the immersion blender in, and went to town.

I love the warmth of the cumin and curry, and while the pistachios provide a nice color contrast, I think their flavor and crunch really make this soup spectacular!

(adapted from Mango & Tomato)

3 cups water
1″ piece of ginger, quartered
1 onion, peeled and quartered
1 carrot, cut into 1″ pieces
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 small butternut squash (or 1/2 a large squash), seeds removed
1 cup coconut milk
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp cayenne (optional)
cilantro and chopped pistachios, for garnish

Preheat the oven to 400 and grease a small roasting pan.
Combine the water, ginger, onion, and carrot in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer. Simmer, partially covered, for 45 minutes to an hour.
Meanwhile, place the squash cut side down on the roasting pan and bake for about an hour, or until very tender. Scrape the flesh out and add to the simmering vegetable broth.
Stir in the coconut milk, cumin seeds, salt, curry powder, and cayenne and puree well with an immersion blender. Taste and adjust seasonings, then serve garnished with cilantro and chopped pistachios.

Curried millet with browned onions

When we lived in California, my husband and I were OBSESSED with Indian food. Seriously, I have to type it in all caps because it was not just some fleeting fondness. Our pantry was stocked with all the essentials: multiple kinds of dal, asafoetida, amchur, curry leaves, fenugreek seeds, atta and chapati flours, and whatever else I could get my hands on at the Indian grocery store.

We were constantly on the lookout for Indian restaurants, and that didn’t stop once we got to Thailand. We quickly found our favorite vegetarian South Indian place, which happened to be just around the corner from our apartment. I was in heaven with such easy access to perfect iddli, sambar, and dosa.

And then the honeymoon was over. I realized I was tired of Indian food. Fortunately, since we were in Thailand, there were plenty of other options. Then when we moved on to Seoul, good Indian food became harder to come by, which was fine with me.

But the other day, when I was looking for ways to use millet (my new favorite whole grain – if you haven’t tried it yet, you should!), this recipe popped up and I realized I kind of missed those Indian flavors I used to be obsessed with. So I made this, and it was divine. The browned onions give it a subtle sweetness, and the cumin and curry provide that warm, exotic flavor that drew me into the world of Indian cuisine in the first place.

The great thing about this recipe is that you don’t need any exotic ingredients to make it. Although I highly recommend getting your hands on some Madhur Jaffrey books and visiting an Indian grocery store, this would be a good way to ease yourself into Indian cooking.

(adapted from Food and Wine)

1 cup millet
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
3 medium onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 cups water
1 tsp salt
1 serrano chile, finely chopped (plus a few thin slices for garnish) – leave this out if you don’t want any spice or increase it if you love spicy food
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 1/2 tsp curry powder

Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add the cumin seeds and onion. Cook over medium, stirring occasionally until the onions are evenly browned (about 20 minutes).

Add the garlic and cook for about 2 more minutes.

Stir in the millet, salt, serrano and water, cover, and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the millet is tender.

Remove the cover and stir in the yogurt, curry powder. Cook until thickened slightly, about 3 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings, then serve garnished with a few slices of serrano.

Coconut Curry Noodle Soup

This is my kind of comfort food! It combines some traditional Thai flavors with somen noodles and tofu for protein.  I cook the tofu in a frying pan to crisp it up a little, and it contrasts really nicely with the soft wheat noodles.  Udon noodles, which are a little thicker, would work as well.  Although rice sticks would be more authentic, I like the heartiness of the wheat noodles.

I scaled down the spiciness considerably – I only used 1 tsp of red curry paste, and it was pretty mild – but if you like spicy food, use a full tablespoon.  I used Thai Kitchen brand, and I’m not sure how that compares with other brands in terms of spiciness.
(adapted from Super Natural Cooking by Heidi Swanson)
9.5 oz somen noodles
1 tbsp peanut oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp chopped garlic
1 tbsp chopped ginger
3 cups broth (vegetable or chicken – your choice)
1 tbsp turmeric
1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp red curry paste
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
20 ounces extra firm tofu, drained and cut into 1 cm cubes
1 can (13.5 oz) light coconut milk
1/3 cup roughly chopped cilantro
3 tbsp chopped roasted peanuts
2 tbsp thinly sliced shallot
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil and cook somen noodles according to package directions.  Set aside.
Heat the peanut oil in a large saucepan or soup pot, until you can clearly smell the peanut aroma (that’s how you’ll know it’s hot!)
Add the onion, garlic, and ginger, and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes.
Add the broth, turmeric, soy sauce, curry paste, sugar, salt, and lime juice, and whisk to combine.  
Turn heat to low and allow broth mixture to simmer.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high.  Add tofu and cook, shaking pan and flipping the tofu cubes until they are golden and slightly crisp on the outside.
Put the tofu into a large serving bowl or soup tureen.
Add the noodles and coconut milk to the broth mixture and cook for a few minutes.  The noodles may be stuck together, but just give them a nice stir.  When the soup is heated through, pour over the tofu and stir well.
Top with cilantro, peanuts, and shallots to serve.


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