Jack is Cooking Hurricane Curry

Well Hello Internet!

Last night as Hurricane Irene bore down upon new york city, we hunkered down and made some curry!  It was the perfect thing to eat while eagerly waiting for the storm.

Otherwise known as a Navratan Korma, this was my own twist on a delicious creamy vegetable curry.
as always with my curry recipes i will divide the spices into groups depending on when they need to be added.  This particular curry has lots of separate steps to take in order to prepare your mis-en-place, but otherwise the actual steps taken are quite simple.

Heres what you will need:

Spice Group A:
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds

Spice Group B
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon asafetida
1/2 teaspoon salt

The Rest of the Ingredients:
1 potato cut into 1 cm cubes
2 large carrots sliced
1/2 cup green peas
1 large head of broccoli (with as much stalk as you can get) cubed

1/2 lb paneer (cubed)
2 tomatoes (cubed)
1 onion (grated)
2 cloves of garlic (finely grated)
1.5 inches of ginger (finely grated)
1 can of coconut milk
2 tablespoons ghee
olive oil.

The Preparation:

1.  Prepare your spice bowls.
2. Cut all vegetables to equal sized pieces and parboil them.  these will be cooked more later, so don’t overdo it now.  strain and set aside in a colander.
3. Cube the tomatoes, grate the onion, grate the ginger and the garlic.
4. Heat the ghee and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan.  fry the paneer until it is golden brown on all sides.   pour the paneer with ghee and all over the vegetables in the colander.  While its still hot sprinkle some garam masala over them and toss.

Boiled Veggies and Paneer sprinkled with Garam Masala

Now that everything is prepared we can get onto the cooking of the actual curry.

1.  In a medium sized pot, heat some olive oil, and add in Spice Group A.  fry for about 30 seconds, and then add in the onions.  fry these together for about 4-5 minutes.  Add the Ginger and the Garlic, and fry for 30 more seconds.
2.  throw in Spice Group B and fry together for about a minute.  add the chopped tomatoes, and fry for 3-4 more minutes:
Spices and Tomatoes

3.  Add the vegetables and paneer, and toss until they are all nice and coated in the spice-tomato mixture.

4.  Add the can of coconut milk, bring to a boil and simmer until the potatoes are just tender.
simmering curry
Serve with rice, and sprinkle a little cilantro on top for added effect! 
and that’s about it!  you can make this during a hurricane no problem, as long as your gas stays on…. or you can make it any other day and its just as good!
mmmm mmmm delicious!

Jack is Cooking Mostly Macro Banh Mi

Well Hello Internet!
its been a couple of weeks, and i have a few posts lingering that i have to put up! but heres a quick one in the mean time.  Last night for dinner i made some Mostly Macrobiotic (almost but not quite) Vietnamese Sandwiches (otherwise known as Banh Mi)
i made them with tempeh instead of the roast pork that is normally in these delicious sandwiches, but i tailored this tempeh to be just as delicious.  
heres what you’ll need:
for the carrots:
2 carrots julienned
1 daikon julienned
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tablespoons rice syrup
some salt
for the tempeh:
1 package of tempeh
2 tablespoons of ketchup
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 inches of ginger
2-3 cloves of garlic
half a lemon 
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tablespoon hot sesame oil
for the sandwiches:
baguettes
spicy mayonaise (mayonaise + sriracha)
cilantro
cucumbers
onion
So First make the carrot slaw
to do this put the water, vinegar and rice syrup in pan and bring to a boil.  transfer to a bowl and let it cool down.  put in the carrots, and the daikon with some salt.  i put in some dried cranberries for some extra goodness too.  let this sit for 30 minutes to an hour, turning every now and then.
While these are festering we can cook the tempeh.  first its good to steam it.  Tempeh is always better steamed first.  so while its steaming, prepare the sauce.  put the ketchup, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil, olive oil, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar together in pan and stir and cook until it boils.
yay!  this is an awesome BBQ sauce, good to put on any kind of meat, or tempeh to make it taste more like BBQ.
 when the tempeh has steamed for 20 minutes or so, pour this sauce all over it, and then cook it in a skillet for about 15 minutes at a medium heat.  now the tempeh is all done!

now all to do is to make the sandwich! so toast the baguette, slather on some spicy mayonnaise (you can make it more or less spicy by the amount of sriracha sauce you put on)  put some tempeh on the roll, then the onions, the cucumbers, some of the carrots and daikon, and top it off with a bunch of cilantro!
the word is that this is as good or better than any of the sandwich places!  (except Nicky’s of course.  that place is the bomb.  but they should make a tempeh sandwich for a veggie option instead of a portabello…)
mmm mmmm delicious!

Jack is Cooking Tacos

Well Hello Internet!
Tonight for Dinner i made Tacos.  and i don’t mean i went out and bought some taco kit and mixed in some ground beef.  i made REAL tacos.  Taco’s like how you would get them in mexico.  or how i would imagine you would get them there, i’ve never actually been!
anyways, these tacos were delicious, cheap, and really easy to make.
Here’s what you’ll need:
1 tomato
6 tomatillos
1 green pepper
1 hot pepper (you can really use whatever type you want, and put more if you want it more spicy)
1 can of corn
1 onion
the breast of 1 chicken
cilantro
paprika
corn tortillas
sour cream
guacamole
cheese
so first, i roasted all of my vegetables (except the onion) in my broiler.  even the canned corn.  i just strained it and dumped it out on the pan with the other vegetables.  i roasted them until they started getting a nice browning on them. then i turned them until i got the same on the other side
Next, i took the tomato, the tomatillos, and some cilantro, and i pureed them in a blender.
in a large pot i took my chicken breast and i browned it quickly on both sides.  then i poured in the tomatillo sauce to begin to simmer the chicken.
after the chicken had simmered for about 10 minutes i cut it up a little bit.  i let it simmer a little while longer, until i could pull it apart with a fork.  at this point i added the rest of the roasted vegetables,  an onion i had cut up, and some paprika
i let all this good stuff simmer together for a while.  finally in the end i through in some more cilantro, and a little lime juice for good measure.  (lime juice is pretty awesome on everything)
now!  for the tacos!  i took my tortillas which i heated up in the microwave, and in each one i put a little bit of this delicious chicken mixture, some guacamole, some sour cream, and some grated cheese.
oh man was it good.
(btw this mixture made enough sauce to make like 12 tacos)
mmm mmmm delicious