Beef and Chick pea Curry

A basic take. Tonight it was beef with a little left over pork, because that’s what I had. lamb is the best, pork more usual around this house, but beef is pretty nice too.

Started by soaking chickpeas, and while that was happening chopping onion, celery, eggplants – they had beautiful long skinny purple ones at the market on Friday.

Cooked the aforementioned in half butter, half coconut oil, and lots of spices. Whole cumin, (a good 2 teaspoons) coriander, 1 tsp. mustard seed, 1 or 2 tsp, fenugrek,1 tsp. tumeric. (read the measuring article…it is all rough)

Added a couple of potatoes diced, a couple of carrots likewise, a handful of raisins, and a teaspoon of tamarind paste. I let that cook for a while, and when the chickpeas were soft – a couple of hours – I drained, them and added to the rest. A little water, some more frozen tomatoes, and low heat for a bit. Ran out of time or I would have added the meat.

Today I cooked cut up beef roast with sesame seed, garlic, ginger and more cumin. A lot of each. Then added to the pot along with some pre-made curry spice mix. /and some left over pork roast and the last of last night’s steak. Let it stew for an hour? and at the end, added cauliflower and broccoli and spinach and cilantro. We ate it with rice leftovers, and some lentils, and yogurt and cucumber grated on the side. Pretty Great.

Of course, it was meant to be a few meals. “Planned-overs” my friend Alison calls it. Will just get better as it sits, and I can take some for my lunch and family can dig in when hungry.

One day I’ll figure out how to add photos. Won’t that be fun…

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The measure of a woman

Tricky business this measuring. I just don’t, at least not often with a device. Of course I measure with eye and hand and taste buds but I forget, and so every time it is new. But the ingredients are different every time; every potato tastes different, every cow has its own story.

If you’re reading this we should establish a few conventions. A teaspoon is a regular stir-your-coffee spoon, rounded on top. An ounce is a fluid ounce, 1/8 of a cup or 30 ml more or less.

Salt is the beautiful and delicious grey and moist sea salt from the north of France (mostly). I use occasionally cowichan sea salt for sprinkling on top of things, and the Glendora farm garlic and Himalayan salt sometimes. Salt matters

But measuring doesn’t, at least not with most things. So fear not, don’t try to make it taste the same every time, embrace the difference non-measuring gives you.

When it comes to chemistry… places where it does matter… I’ll try to be more precise. Wish me luck.

Fish stew

I make lots of different kinds of fish stew but I was very happy with the one tonight. I was planning a Greek dinner so I bought a few squid tubes and some peppers last night, but then wasn’t feeling all that well and cancelled the dinner. But we needed to eat so I arose to cook…

2 smallish leeks sliced and in the favourite copper skillet with ¬†butter and salt, added 4 stalks of celery sliced up. And a good bit of herbs de provence. Added about 4 smallish potatoes sliced thin. Another happy use of the rotary slicer. When the potatoes were somewhat cooked I added more butter and a half head of garlic, chopped. Cooked that a bit and added the left over white wine… maybe 1/2 a cup or a bit more,

Then tomatoes. I had lots of frozen tomatoes from the garden in the freezer so added 8 or 10 small ones- just chuck them in frozen. You could use 4 normal fresh ones or a small can of whole tomatoes. Then a whole pepper sliced thin.

I let that cook for a bit while I prepped broccoli for steaming, and checked the basmati with saffron:) Well… I was hungry for something really good.

Chucked in a few sliced mushrooms, maybe 1/4 cup of water, and 3 nice filets of basa cut in cubes.

While that cooked ( 5 or 10 minutes) I cooked the squid in slices in olive oil, salt, basil and another clove of garlic. . 20 seconds.

Put the squid and some green onion on top of the stew, stirred it in, and ate it up, on the rice, brocoli beside. Yum.