When Andrew and I first moved to New York, my grandmother and aunt congratulated us with a spice gift basket. We were so overwhelmed. Not only was there no where to put the spices (this was New York City guys, so imagine a glorified closet), but we had no clue how to use them. We ended up finding and adopting an industrial kitchen rack on the sidewalk and that became their new home, and after loads of confidence boosting practice we got the hang of sprinkling them here and there.
2 years later and our spices have not only migrated with us to DC, but our collection has managed to grow. Spices provide substantial amounts of flavor and color without extra calories, making your meal more appetizing and satisfying without compromising your waist line. Some spices, including turmeric which you’ll find in this recipe, have been shown to reduce inflammation, a precursor for cancer and heart disease, so they are definitely a healthful addition.
You may notice I’ve bulked up my curry with frozen and canned vegetables. I always try and stick with fresh produce, but because everything simmers for such an extensive amount of time, I’ve found absolutely no difference in taste or texture between the two products. So, on a student’s budget, I wanted to share the less expensive, but still organic, option. This one-pot and spice packed curry will make enough to feed a hungry table of 8 or make some lucky family of 1 or 2 insanely happy with about a work-weeks worth of leftovers. It also freezes well if you’d like to keep it handy for a night you don’t feel like cooking. I serve this brothy curry over 1/2 cup fluffy basmati rice.
You’ll also notice this recipe was inspired by one of my favorite chefs and ‘real food’ advocates: Jamie Oliver. In addition to our spices, Jamie’s Great Britain, one of the most beautiful cookbooks in my collection, came in the mail from an anonymous gift giver and has brightened our kitchen and our stomachs since.
Standout Vegetable Vindaloo [makes 8 servings]
Inspired By: Roasted Veg Vindaloo// Jamie’s Great Britain// Jamie Oliver
For Curry Paste
1/2 bulb garlic, cloves peeled
1/2 red onion, peeled and quartered
1 tablespoons raisins
1/2 tablespoon garam masala
1/2 tablespoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce (check label to ensure vegan)
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
For the curry paste, put all of the ingredients in a high speed blender or food processor and blend until completely smooth. Scrape the paste out into a bowl and set aside.
3 medium red onions, pealed and roughly chopped
1 package (16 ounces) frozen cauliflower florets
3 cups filtered water
1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes
2 cups low sodium vegetable stock
1 package (16 ounces) frozen green peas
1 package (16 ounces) frozen chopped spinach
1 bunch fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F, rack in the middle.
In a large Dutch oven or casserole dish (that is safe to use in the oven and on your stop top), toss the cauliflower and red onions with the curry paste. Add the water and stir to combine. Roast in the oven, uncovered, for 40 minutes making sure to stir half way through.
Remove the dish from the oven and place it on your stove top over medium-low heat. Add the chickpeas, stock and tomatoes and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, stir in the peas and spinach, cover again and simmer for 10 additional minutes. Remove from heat and serve topped with fresh cilantro and chopped walnuts.
Nutritional Information: (per serving // 2.25 cups per serving)
280 Calories, 40g Carbohydrates, 7.4g Fat, 13.5g Protein