Friday, April 11, 2014
Coconut Milk Saves The Day
We've got about a week and a half on this rice and beans kick left to go and I am really feeling like the creative juices are starting to flow. Most of my concoctions to date have had a decidedly south-of-the-border flavor to them, so last night I wanted to take it in a totally different direction. I went with a Moroccan/Curry-esque theme. The idea of caramelized onions and chickpeas swimming in a pool of coconut milk over some steamy rice was really calling out to me. But it needed more, a vegetable of some sort, hmm... ah, yes cauliflower (yet another item that doesn't grace our plates often enough). It's amazing to me how many of the least favorite veggies I can get the girls to eat when put in a curry type dish, and I am always on the lookout for ways to get more veg in my family's diet. So I began by caramelizing a couple of chopped up onions and once these were close to done I added a head of cauliflower broken up into bite sized florets letting them soften up in the pan with the onions. Next came a couple minced cloves of garlic and one cup of chicken stock, to which I tossed in a half teaspoon each of cumin seed and garam marsala as well as a teaspoon of turmeric, salt and pepper. I let this hang out for a bit on low, allowing the flavors to get to know each other and become good friends, then I added a can and a half of coconut milk. I let it all simmer in the open pan to reduce the liquid a bit. Oh my, at this point the smells were wafting out of the kitchen and making us all hungry. This stayed simmering on the stovetop while we not-so-very patiently waited until the rice, that I inadvertently forgot to turn on, was ready to go. Last night's version of beans and rice was a much needed change of pace in the flavor department and was welcomed by all at the table, even our 11 year old guest. Anything with coconut milk is absolute comfort food in our home, why didn't I think of this sooner?