Coconut-Cashew Curry with Chickpeas

Again, we borrowed adapted a recipe from Serious Eats. Delicious, seriously, delicious.

1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp curry powder
1 TBL Earth Balance or oil
1 small onion, finely minced (about 1 cup)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 TBL fresh ginger, grated on the medium holes of a box grater
1 small red or green chili, finely chopped (or a jalapeno…)
1 tsp cayenne
1/2 cup cashew nuts
half of a 14-ounce can coconut milk (i.e. 7 oz)
3 cups of cooked chickpeas (or 2 cans, drained and rinsed)
1 bunch (about 3 ounces) flat spinach leaves, trimmed, rinsed, and roughly chopped
Kosher salt
1/4 cup fresh juice from 3 to 4 limes
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems, coarsely chopped

Heat oil/buttera large saucepan over medium-high heat until melted, then add onion, garlic, ginger, and chili. Cook, stirring frequently, and scraping bottom of pan until golden brown and starting to burn in spots, about 10 minutes. Add cayenne, cashews, and half of spice mixture. Cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add coconut milk and remove from heat. Scrape up any browned bits from bottom of pan. **optional, you can blend this now, but we didn’t.**

Add chickpeas, spinach, and remaining spice mix and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until vegetables are heated through and spinach is wilted, about 10 minutes. Add salt and lime juice to taste. Stir in cilantro. Serve with rice or naan and garnish with extra lime wedges and cilantro.

Kenji’s Lentil and Coconut Soup and Sweet Potato Salad

This was a fantastic meal! The soup is a slightly modified version of Serious Eats editor Kenji’s Lentil and Coconut Soup. He made this as part of his month long vegan experiment and it’s really tasty! To go with the tropical flavors, we made  a salad with sweet potatoes, mango, basil, bean sprouts and a citrus-sesame dressing.

We made a few changes to the recipe, but check out the original and Kenji’s other vegan recipes.

1 TBL olive oil
2 medium carrots, peeled and finely diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 large onion, finely diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 stalks celery, finely diced (about 3/4 cup)
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh ginger minced
2 habañeros,  seeds removed, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeds removed, chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 pound dry black lentils
2.5 quarts water (or stock)
2 bay leaves
1 (15-ounce) can coconut milk
1/2 cup chopped cilantro (plus extra for garnish)
1 tablespoon Siracha
1/4 cup juice from 2 limes
1 tablespoon soy sauce (we used Bragg’s)
1 tsp salt

Precook the lentils in a pressure cooker (about 8 minutes) or in a pot with water. This will dramatically reduce the cooking time.

Heat oil in a large pan. Add carrots, onions, and celery, and cook, stirring frequently, until softened but not browned, about 4 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, habañero pepper, cumin, and coriander and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute longer.

Add the sauteed vegetables, etc. to the lentils, bay leaves, and water. Bring to a boil over high heat and reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until lentils are completely tender and have started to break down and thicken the soup, about 30-45 minutes.

Discard bay leaves. Partially puree some of the soup with a hand blender or in a standing blender to thicken. Add coconut milk, salt, cilantro, hot sauce, lime juice, and soy sauce and stir to combine. Cook another 10 minutes uncovered.

Garnish with extra cilantro.