Turkey and Spinach Curry (4)

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This is a loosely termed curry borrowing from both Asian and Indian dishes. From the Asian I took coconut milk and ginger and from the Indian I used various spices – garam masala, cumin, curry powder and turmeric – and I stir in a touch of mango chutney and a pinch of white pepper (enough so that you can taste it) just before serving. The addition of spinach and lentils and using ground turkey as the meat makes for a light and healthy curry.

1 tbsp. olive oil seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 medium onion – chopped

2 large cloves of garlic – grated

1 tsp. each of cumin, curry powder and garam masala

Pinch of turmeric

2 inch piece of ginger – peeled and grated (makes 1 tbsp.

1 pound of ground turkey

1 can (15 oz.) lite coconut milk

1 can (15oz.) lentils – rinsed

1/2 cup turkey/chicken broth

10 oz. baby spinach

1 – 2 tbsp. mango chutney

Good pinch of white pepper

Chopped cilantro (to sprinkle over top of curry before serving)

Put 1 tbsp. of seasoned olive oil in a Dutch oven. When it is sizzling add onion. Let it soften and brown a little then add garlic and spices and stir. When you can smell the spices, add the ginger.

Cook for a couple of minutes then add the turkey and brown.

Pour in coconut milk, turkey/chicken broth and lentils. Bring to boil and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add spinach and let wilt, stirring a little.

Stir in a mango chutney and white pepper.

Sprinkle with chopped cilantro

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Lentils and Beans with Lime and Cilantro (4)

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Pulses in all guises are some of my most favorite foods and the bonus is that they are good for you. This really is so quick to make and would be perfect to take to work for lunch. I served it alongside chicken (poached in lemon juice and olive oil) but it stands alone too for a satisfying vegan/vegetarian dish.

1 can of lentils (approx. 15 oz.) – drained and rinsed

1 can of cannellini beans (approx. 15 oz.) – drained and rinsed

1 heaped tbsp. cilantro – finely chopped

Juice of half a lime

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mustard Chicken with Spinach Crust (4)

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I was thinking of my spinach roulade for some reason and it occurred to me that it might work as a topping instead of, say, mashed potatoes. What would it go with? Chicken, perhaps? Then, what to do with the chicken? How about lentils? Would it be bland? How about a mustard sauce? This is the thought process I go through as I develop my recipes.

SPINACH CRUST

10 oz. baby spinach – rinsed

4 eggs – separated

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place rinsed spinach in a skillet/frying pan and cook until nicely wilted, then drain and wrap in a clean T-towel to get rid of excess moisture.

When spinach is cool whizz it in a food processor along with the egg yolks and seasoning

Whisk egg whites until stiff then fold into the spinach mixture one large spoonful at a time.

Line a baking tray with waxed paper greased with a little oil, place spinach mixture on top and cook for about 20 minutes or so until mixture is firm

CHICKEN

1 tbsp. olive oil seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 onion – finely chopped

2 large cloves of garlic – grated

1 pound of chicken – cut into small bite size pieces

2 cups of cooked lentils

1 cup chicken broth/stock

2 tbsp. Dijon mustard

Heat oil in skillet/frying pan and when sizzling add onion and let soften a bit then add garlic and cook until onion is a little browned.

Add chicken and sear till browned on all sides, then add lentils.

Stir the mustard into the broth and pour mixture over chicken. Bring to boil, turn down heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Place chicken and lentils in an oven proof dish, remove warm spinach mixture carefully from waxed paper and place on top of  chicken mixture. Serve immediately.

Jo’s Vegetable Pie (4)

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What to do with a surfeit of lentils? Had already made soup. How about a veggie version of Shepherd’s Pie? To lentils I added peas, cannellini beans, carrots and ‘passata’ (tomato sauce). The topping was horseradish mashed potato

1 tbsp. olive oil seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 medium onion – finely chopped

2 large cloves of garlic – grated

2 medium carrots – cut into slices and then each slice cut into quarters

3 cups cooked lentils

1 can of cannellini beans

1 cup frozen peas

24 oz passata (I use the ‘Flora’ brand)

Heat oil in cast iron casserole dish and when sizzling add the onion and let brown, then add garlic and carrots and cook for a couple of minutes.

Add rest of ingredients one at a time, bring to boil and simmer for 20 minutes.

Place mixture in ovenproof serving dish, top with horseradish mash (see below) and cook in oven at 350 degrees for another 20 minutes.

For the mashed potato topping I took 2 largish potatoes and mashed them with 4 tsps. of prepared horseradish (Gold’s brand).

Thai Lentil Dal (serves 4)

Thai Lentil Dal (serves 4)

I recently travelled on Virgin Atlantic and pre-ordered a vegan/vegetarian meal and was surprised how delicious it was. I was served a mild vegetable curry – curried spinach, rice and a dahl. Returning home I decided to try out a lentil dahl/dal (a type of pulses stew). I didn’t stick to traditional Indian spices but veered towards Thai flavors – green curry paste, ginger, lite coconut milk, a little finely chopped onion and garlic. So good and healthy and protein. Serve as a veg. side dish or serve with spinach (got to find out what was in mine – it had some crunchy, delicious spices). This might make a nice take-to-work meal if you have a microwave to heat it up. Could almost be a soup.

1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 a large onion – chopped
2 cloves of garlic – chopped
1 1/2 tbsp. Green Curry Paste (Thai Kitchen brand)
1 x can lite coconut milk (Thai Kitchen brand)
1 x 15.5 oz. can of lentils – drained and rinsed
1 tbsp. ginger – finely grated
Juice of half a lime

Heat oil in a skillet and when sizzling add onion and let soften for a few minutes.
Add garlic and continue to let soften.
Then add the curry paste, mix in well and cook for a couple of minutes.
Next add the coconut milk and stir.
Than add the lentils.
Finally add ginger and lime juice, bring to boil and then simmer for 20 minutes.