The winter weather doesn’t seem to be letting up anytime soon. It’s FREEZING out, and I can’t help but hope all have a warm place to tuck away. For me, it’s with my pups nestled around the fire. This day, I happened to have a hearty bowl of Tomato Cream Masala Curry in hand. I feel SO fortunate to have a warm home and hot meals. I’ve just recently set a goal to provide the same for others – hot meals…to start.
Saturday morning, I awoke to find large paw prints in the fresh snow that seemed to wander throughout my driveway. This is the second occasion within the last week these prints have appeared, and the first since I’ve moved into my home nearly 4years ago. It also happens to be the coldest winter I have experienced since moving. Whatever it is visiting my home does so during the late evenings to early mornings. This got me thinking about how weather affects food sources – and not just for us.
The quality of produce in the stores lately has been somewhat lacking. As I browse past wrinkly portobello mushrooms and moldy red onions, I’m reminded of the ‘food chain’ and how much we count on fresh product from a vast number of hardworking providers (thank you!). Although, not always available at its freshest, we’re the lucky ones. I’m sure a shipment will arrive in the coming days – after all, snowy conditions can cause delay. What I would LOVE is for the ‘older’ produce to have a home before it gets to that state. Its home, one where the food can be created into warm meals for those who could really use them. A sustainable system is SO needed…and absolutely necessary.
Although I don’t eat many legumes today, Curries are one of my favourite cozy meals. Fragrant, hearty, full of flavour – yes, please! They’re surprisingly easy to make, but do require a few hours to simmer. I like to use dried beans and/or lentils as I find they hold up well overall (stirring, reheating, storing). Simmering curry is one way to get the house smelling absolutely delicious. What a way to welcome your crew home!
When it comes to curries…this is one of my ALL time favourites. It’s fragrant, full of flavour, and filling. It’s a perfect meal to warm up to on a cold day and reheat as leftovers – the flavour only gets better with time.
- 1&1/2 cups dried moth and/or jammu beans *soaked in water overnight
- 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
- 2 tbsp cumin seeds
- 8 med/large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 796 ml can organic diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp fresh ginger, finely grated or chopped
- 1/2 tsp turmeric paste or 1tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tbsp garam masala
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1/2-1 tsp cayenne pepper *less for mild, more for hot
- 2 tsp sea salt or to taste
- 6&1/2 cups water
- 2 steakhouse tomatoes – cut into 1inch pieces
- 4-6 tbsp coconut cream
*I did a 50/50 mix of moth and jammu beans.
Heat a large pot or stoneware over med. heat. Add the grapeseed oil and cumin seeds. The seeds should be sizzling away. Stirring often, once the cumin seeds turn a deeper brown colour, add the minced garlic. Keep stirring!
Once the garlic is turning golden in colour, add the tomatoes. Stir well to combine the ingredients. Bring back up to a boil.
Next, add the ginger, turmeric, garam masala, coriander, cayenne, and sea salt. Stir.
Add the water. Give the curry a good stir. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, add the *drained beans. Stir.
Turn the heat to med./low and place a lid on the pot. Simmer for 3.5hrs or until the beans are cooked (mine still had a little bite to them), stirring every hour or so. Add more water if needed. Add the cut steakhouse tomatoes at about the 3hr mark and stir them into the curry.
Once the beans are cooked to your liking, remove from heat. Add the coconut cream. Stir well.
Serve warm with a side of rice, and topped with fresh cilantro.
Store in the fridge. Best when eaten within 3-5days.
~ Coconut cream is the solid portion in canned coconut milk. Store the can upside-down in the refrigerator for at least a couple hours – the solid portion should then be at the top when opening the can.
~ If using canned beans and/or lentils, you can cut back on the amount of water, salt, and cooking time. Simmer for about 30mins or so (rather than the 3.5hrs). You’ll want to give the curry enough time for the flavours to develop i.e. spices to cook.
~ I like to add a little fresh spinach to my bowl of hot curry prior to serving. The heat will wilt the spinach and it just melts in your mouth! Yum.