Photo challenge day 11: Warmth

Today’s theme from the First Thirty-one Photo Challenge at Fourtuitous is “warmth”.

Few things are more delicious and more warming on a cold winter’s day than a hearty bowl of home-made soup. This honey-roasted parsnip and carrot soup is my own creation. The addition of ground cumin, mild chili powder and plenty of black pepper give it a spicy warmth.

Honey-roasted parsnip and carrot soup

Honey-roasted parsnip and carrot soup

Blog challenge recipe #6: India

If you are a new visitor to my blog, you can read about my blog challenge here in my post ‘I’m setting myself a challenge’.

For the sixth recipe in my blog challenge, I decided to head to India (not literally!) and cook a delicious curry. So far the title, ‘challenge’, has been slightly misleading because none of the recipes I’ve cooked are especially challenging. But sometimes simple is best! I hope to work some challenges into my cooking during the next few weeks and since I have had blog visitors from nearly forty countries, I have plenty of opportunities to cook unusual dishes and investigate different world cuisines.

Spices


Public domain image: Spices by Jiří Dokoupil

When you think of Indian food, you probably think of curry. It is a staple dish in many Asian countries, including India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, and there are thousands of different types of curry. In India alone, curries vary according to tradition and region, for instance, in Kerala (a state in south-west India) curries are often vegetarian and are made with creamy coconut along with spices such as coriander and turmeric.

Coconut palm tree

Public domain image: Coconut 1 by Greg Getten

The recipe which follows is one which I created using basic ingredients from the store cupboard. Simple, nutritious and very, very tasty! It took me approx. 15 minutes to prepare and about 30 mins to cook. I made this for dinner last night and didn’t bother measuring out ingredients so the quantities listed here are very approximate and you will have to adjust according to the amount of servings you need — recipe below serves 2 with generous portions. Feel free to alter, change or add anything (it might be nice with a few crushed garlic cloves) and as always, let me know if you enjoyed it and share your thoughts in the comments section.

Potato and cabbage curry

Ingredients:
10 baby potatoes, chopped into chunks
½ green cabbage, chopped into shreds
1 onion, finely chopped
Cream of coconut – a block of compressed coconut, not coconut milk. I used approx. ½ cup of this.
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp coriander
Black pepper to taste
A 2 cm chuck of fresh ginger, finely chopped
5 tablespoons olive oil
Boiled water

Method:

1. Finely chop the onion and gently saute in the olive oil. While the onion is cooking, prepare the curry paste mix. Add the creamed coconut, chopped ginger and spices to a blender with approx. ½ cup of boiled water and blend until the coconut is dissolved and no lumps remain.
2. Wash the potatoes and chop them into approx. 3 cm chunks. Add them to the onion along with the coconut mix. Cook on a moderate heat, stirring frequently.
3. When the potatoes are nearly tender, add the chopped cabbage. Add just enough water to almost cover the vegetables and cook for a further 10 – 15 minutes, until the cabbage is cooked but not overdone (overcooked cabbage = eww!) and the potatoes are soft. I served it with steamed carrot sticks and brown basmati rice.