Monday, March 26, 2012

Pistachio & Chickpea Curry!
Ok, a little curry curve ball! This dish has Indian sensibilities, however was made from a pantry that fell short in the spice department.. so i had to improvise. Delightfully, it seemed to work quite tastily! Try not to be intimidated by the lengthy list of ingredients. Once you have everything out on the bench and have chopped all you need, then it's literally a matter of throwing everything in a fry pan and voila!

Serves 4 - 6


Spice flavorings -
1 heaped tsp chinese five spice
1 heaped tsp tumeric
1 flat tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp ground jamaican allspice
salt and pepper

Aromatics -
2 eschalots, diced
1 clove garlic, sliced
1/2 serrano chili, finely sliced
1/2 small nob ginger, peeled and finely diced
1 stem of lemongrass, beaten and finely diced
1 cilantro root and 1/2 bunch's worth of stems, finely diced
splash of water
1 ripe tomato, roughly diced
1 heaped tsp brown sugar
juice half lime

1/2 pound long grain brown rice (I used Trader Joe's "Brown Rice Medley" which included a delicious mix of long grain brown rice, black barley and daikon radish seeds!
2 C vegetable broth
3 C water (added through out, you may need to use a little less or a little more, depending on your stove and rice variety)

1 C diced carrot
2 zucchini, diced
1 can chickpeas, rinsed well
1/2 pound frozen green peas
1 C shelled pistachios
1/2 bunch cilantro leaves, roughly chopped

Into a large hot non-stick fry pan add all the spices and then all the aromatics, stirring roughly to prevent sticking. The smell should be delicious!
Then add your rice, veggie broth and 1 C water.
This is like a low maintenance risotto. It requires far less stirring, just once in a while... and just needs you to cast your eye over things from time to time to make sure nothing's sticking.
After the rice and broth and water are bubbling nicely add your carrot and stir.
If the liquid is disappearing too quickly, add some more water.
About 10 minutes after the carrots go in, throw in your zucchini and well-rinsed chickpeas.
Again, check your liquid and add more if required. You want the rice to be moving fluidly round the pan, no sticking. You may wish to cover the pan at this time, either with a tight fitting lid or a loose piece of aluminum foil to speed up the cooking process.
About 5 minutes before serving add the frozen peas and pistachio nuts.
As soon as the rice tastes cooked, take it off the heat and stir through the cilantro leaves.
I'd say, all in all it takes about 10-15 minutes of prep and 30 minutes to cook. Not too long to wait before tucking in.

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