curry and cheese.

To round out the rest of the new recipes this week, Tyler had been asking me to find him a recipe that he could make. So a curry recipe that I saw in Nigella Lawson Express seemed more than perfect. We haven't made a curry before, and it had Tyler's favorite things involved: shrimp, mango and rice. So we made that, and it was great! I helped Tyler make it, but I think now on this can be a meal that he can make by himself, it seems like a good recipe to customize.

Last night I made mac and cheese which tasted really good, but I can never make a cheese sauce without it turning grainy when I put the cheese in. So that was a little irritating.

Shrimp and Mango Curry

1 T garlic or chili oil
1 green onion
1 1/2 T red thai curry paste
1 can coconut milk
1 cup chicken stock
2 1/2 cups of cubed sweet potato and/or butternut squash
7 oz frozen shrimp
1 t lime juice
1 cup mango cubes (I used frozen because good yellow orange mangos are never at the store, and Tyler doesn't like those red/green mangos. Blame it on the phillipines!)

Heat oil in skillet, put in sliced green onion and cook for one minute, then add the curry paste. Whisk in the coconut milk, stock and bring to a boil.
Tip in the butternut squash and sweet potato cubes and simmer, partially covered, for about 15 minutes or until tender.
Put shrimp in and let the sauce come back to a boil. Add the diced mango and lime juice and cook for another minutes until the shrimp are cooked through. Serve with chopped cilantro over rice or noodles.



This weekend, we made the rounds to the couple thrift stores that we like here in State College. I found this pitcher, which I love. It has more of a scientific/laboratory feel, and it's only about a quart size.


minute minestrone

This week I am trying 3 new recipes. The first one I tried is from Nigella Lawson Express, a super simple soup. It's one of those awesome recipes where there are less than 5 ingredients, are on hand, super cheap, and tasty. With some crunchy bread to dunk in, it made the perfect lunch, especially because my house is only 60 degrees (must... resist turning on the heat)!

Minute Minstrone

3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup tomato based pasta sauce
1 can mixed bean salad (I used cannellini)
4 oz ditalini pasta (or any soup pasta)

Put everything but the pasta in the pot, bring up to a boil, then cook the pasta until cooked, season to taste.

Things I added (of course I can't just leave it alone) 1 can petite diced tomatoes, couple handfuls of frozen green beans (same time as the pasta), and probably 1/2 t oregano, + some fresh parmesan. I guess I doubled the ingredients. So easy to add to!


new weekly ritual

I spotted a granola recipe on David Lebovitz's blog, and proceed to read several different foodie blogs about how this is the greatest granola recipe. Its origin is from a Nigella Lawson cookbook. I have been a little obsessed about her lately, I love her cookbooks and I have them all at home from interlibrary loan. Maybe not enough to make chicken livers or other very british food, but I love her spirit and writing in her books.

For this recipe I adapted to my own taste and used adaptions from other people too. I added lots of seeds. It's the perfect blend of soft and crunchy, the applesauce in it makes it have a wonderful texture. I actually split it in half and make half with whole almonds and half with sliced almonds, because I love to eat it with milk, and I like having little bits of almond rather than a huge whole ones that are great for snacking. I keep raisens on hand and throw them in when I feel like eating them with it.


Dry mix
5 C rolled oats
2-3 C raw almonds (or half whole half sliced)
1/2 C raw pumpkin seeds
1/2 C raw hulled sunflower seeds
1/8 C hulled sesame seeds
1/4 C golden flax seeds
1/2 C raw unsweeted coconut
3/4 C light brown sugar
1 T cinnamon
1/2 T ginger
1 t kosher or sea salt

Wet mix
3/4 C unsweetened applesauce
1/3 C brown rice syrup
1/4 C honey
2 T vegetable oil
1-2 t vanilla

Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients into a large bowl (or two if splitting), stir to to mix the wet mixture very well, pour over the dry mix and stir to mix very well. Divide onto two baking sheets and put into the oven on the upper and lower thirds. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until golden brown, stirring and switching racks every 10 minutes. Once done, take out of oven and give a good stir, and let cool. If you want it more clumpy, don't stir once you get it out of the oven, just let it cool on the pan. Put in airtight containers, keeps forever in the fridge!
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