We're an open-minded bunch, right? So we won't hold it against this recipe, will we, that it's called "curried"? A curry, after all, is just a spice mix and we all know what the right mix of spices does to foods, vegetables and meats alike, right?
A vegetable stew strikes such the right note for January, for any month really, but especially a month when it feels so good to return to what's fresh and what's healthy and what's, you know, every-day delicious versus sugar-and-butter laden holiday-delicious.
So please, if there's anyone in the kitchen who's prone to say, "I don't like curry" then please, just think of this as a "Spiced Vegetable Stew". I'm willing to bet, you'll love it.
PS Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real, a great choice for a side dish or Meatless Monday!
Fresh fruits, they’re just soooo uncomplicated? Bite into an apple; peel a banana; pull a few grapes off a cluster; open mouth, insert berry or cherry. From impulse to input, only seconds pass.
But fresh vegetables, they’re harder! The exception is baby carrots which aren’t young, tender carrots at all, just bullets of carrot flesh carved from huge, honkin’ carrots that compensate for taste with convenience: no washing, no cutting, no waste, as easy as jelly beans.
But most fresh vegetables call for some slice-slice-chop-chop knife work, trimming, peeling, dicing, chopping or mincing. Nothing hard, mind you. Not even so time-consuming. We spend 23 minutes a visit on Facebook (source: MediaBistro) and untold hours staring at screens small and large. Surely we can carve out time for cooking healthy, vegetable-centric meals?
Ah heavens, regular readers, so sorry. I know you’re with me on this, I’ll get off my soapbox!
So instead, let’s talk knives and how we take care of them.
My favorite knives are circa early 1980s, Chicago Cutlery utility knives with that came in a set, the walnut handles now much faded. Last fall, a blade snapped in half – just like that, no warning. I harbor no complaints, however, that knife broke after thirty years of knife “abuse”: infrequent sharpening and daily dishwasher cleaning.
(I’d buy an identical knife in a heartbeat but unfortunately Amazon reviews from other long-time users indicate a dramatic drop in quality and longevity. It’s the China Effect, no doubt, low labor costs which force other manufacturers to sacrifice quality to compete on cost. But there I go again, another soapbox.)
That’s right, no babying knives around here! If a knife loses its blade every week or even every month, off it goes. If a knife can’t handle the dishwasher, it’s gone. What’s the state of your knives, are they coddled and caressed? Yes I
know live with a cook like that.
CURRIED VEGETABLE STEW
Time to table: 3-1/2 hours on high, 7 hours on low
Makes 11 cups
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 onions, cut in large pieces
- 2 pounds vegetables (see TIPS for vegetable suggestions), cut in large pieces
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme or Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 28 ounces canned diced tomatoes
- 15 ounces canned beans (black beans, chickpeas, etc.), rinsed and drained
- 1 large butternut squash, peeled and diced (How to Cut, Peel & Cube a Butternut Squash and Keep All Ten Fingers)
- 1 cinnamon stick
TO FINISH (don’t skip!)
- 1 tablespoon honey (agave for vegan)
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice or lime juice
- 1 teaspoon Tabasco or hot sauce or sirarcha
- Chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
START on the STOVETOP In a Dutch oven or very large and deep skillet, heat oil on medium high until shimmery. Add onions and other vegetables as they’re prepped, stirring to coat with fat with each new addition, turning down the heat to keep up with the prep pace, you’ll want to aim for “golden” colored vegetables not “browned” vegetables. Stir in the garlic and ginger and cook for 1 – 2 minutes. Add the spices and cook for 1 – 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and beans. Bring to a boil and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
MOVE to a SLOW COOKER Arrange butternut squash pieces on the bottom of the slow cooker. Add the cinnamon stick and pour vegetable mix over top. Cook on high for about 3 hours or on low for about 6 hours. PET PEEVE: Slow cookers vary so much in performance so the first time you make this, watch your time and temperature to get it right for your specific cooker.
TO FINISH Pull out the cinnamon stick. Mix the honey, lemon juice and Tabasco in a small bowl, then stir into slow cooker. To serve, serve as a side dish or a vegan main dish, sprinkled with fresh parsley or cilantro.
This Week, Years Past 2002 - 2013
Low-Fat Vegetable Soup Quick Cauliflower Soup or Quick Broccoli Soup Two-Way Lentil Skillet Morning Oatmeal: How & Why to Cook Oatmeal Every Day Sugar-Free Chai Tea How to Lose Weight with Weight Watchers Quick 'n' Easy Raw Salad How to Make Homemade Vegetable Soup Why I Switched from Weight Watchers to Medifast
This Week, Elsewhere
Jazzing Up Winter: More Vegetable Main Dishes for Cold Weather
Shop Your Pantry First
© Copyright 2014 Kitchen Parade