Curried Roasted Vegetables and Curry Sauce

This is my latest craving !  I think I could have curried roasted vegetables forever without tiring from them.  This sauce OMW !!! This sauce is the star of the show ! It is probably the most versatile sauce I have made and it is great with Evverryything !!!. With literally six ingredients you have the ultimate sauce, and best of all….no major effort.

I do a lot of roasted vegetables, and one day decided to throw some curry powder on them instead of the usual herbs.  Result:  Perfect.  That night I was going to serve it on quinoa (obviously) but just thought that it needed a bit of oomph. I didn’t really know where I was going with this, but some sort of sauce was needed, maybe…but I didn’t want the thickness of a white sauce effect…. So, butter, chopped onion, minced garlic, curry powder, a little milk and cornflour came to play and the Curry Sauce was born. Now….this sauce is used for pretty much anything, on top of patties, burgers, tortillas, you name it, the sauce is used ! Seriously, if the hubby could drink this sauce from a straw, trust me he would !!! In fact I am waiting for him to pile it on a sandwich instead of his usual peanut butter !!!

The great thing about this Curried Roasted Vegetables and Curry Sauce is that you can mix and match whatever vegetables you like, or better still whatever vegetables you have on hand. This can be made as a main meal or a side…I mean, really….how great is this!!!

Curried Roasted Vegetables and Curry Sauce

Preparation time:  10 minutes

Cooking time:  30 minutes

Total time:  40 minutes

Ingredients:

Butternut

Carrot

Peppers

Tomato

Marrows

Salt and Pepper

Sprinkling of curry powder

Optional:  Top with roasted curried chickpeas *

Kale

For the Sauce:  (Makes just over 1 cup /approximately 300 millilitres thickish sauce)

4 Tablespoons of butter

1 onion, diced

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 cup milk of your choice (plus an extra 50 millilitres to thin sauce later)

2 teaspoons maizena/cornflour (gluten-free)

1 dessertspoonful curry powder

Instructions:

Preheat oven at 180 degrees Celsius/350 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you are going to roast Kale, I like to do this on a separate baking tray from the other veggies.  Remove the kale leaves from the stalk. Massage the Kale leaves with a drizzling of olive oil and salt, for a few minutes. Place in the preheated oven, and watch carefully, as the Kale roasts up quickly.  Remove from oven.  The Kale will be nice and crispy. This is a great snack attack btw, but try to save some for your meal :-). 

Chop up all your vegetables, preferably the same size for roasting.

Place on baking trays, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, and season with salt, pepper and curry powder.

Give the veggies a toss so that the oil and seasoning covers the veggies well.

Place in the oven and roast.  Check about half way through and give them a stir around.

Remove from the oven once done.

Whilst the veggies are roasting, make the Curry Sauce.

In a small pot, on medium heat, add the butter and saute’ the diced onion and garlic. Add the curry powder and stir.

In a small cup add the maizena/cornflour and use a little of the milk you’ve measured out and add to the maizena/cornflour to help it combine.  Add this mixture to the small pot with the saute’d  onion and garlic. Stir gently.

Then add all of the remaining milk (except the extra measured out for thinning the sauce if needed) and allow to reach boiling stage.  Keep stirring. The sauce will thicken. If it is too thick, add a little milk.  If the sauce does stand awhile, it will naturally thicken and then just thin out with a little milk.

Taste.  If you want the sauce hotter, add more curry powder.

Serve the curry sauce on top of the roasted veggies and top with crunchy roasted curried chickpeas.

Enjoy 🙂

NB*  To Roast Chickpeas:  Place cooked chickpeas on a baking tray, drizzle olive oil over and season with salt and pepper.  Add a sprinkling of curry powder.  Toss so all the chickpeas are generously covered with the  seasonings. Place in pre-heated oven and cook until a light golden  brown.

Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

 

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Another Vegetarian Meal guys…I am just on this crazy but wonderful Vegetarian ride at the moment, and its like…I just don’t want to get off it.

Well, its Spring here in good old South Africa, but with the weather we have been experiencing lately, it is hard to believe.  We have had bouts of some miserable weather, I mean about two weeks ago it was even cold for a day to two !  It was like we all of a sudden had the winter we never had this year ! Weird…. Now, these last few days have been so windy, to the point of unpleasantness, and I do not like wind.  Wind, really is not my friend….

But its cool, because over the real Winter time, it was so hot, we were eating salads, and now for Spring we are eating curries and all those nice comfort warming meals…..hence Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings !

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Yum, yum and yum :-). This dish is filled with delicious vegetables, and again it is very adaptable.  I basically again, used the veggies I had in my fridge before they started to look sad and bedraggled…you know how it goes.  Usually I throw them all into a pot and make a soup, or throw them…. (that really sounds awful….I don’t really ‘throw’ them….I place them…yes…I place them….) in a pan and make a delicious healthy frittata or definitely some form of a veggie concoction.

Anyway, back to the dish of the day…..super easy, scrumptious, warming to the soul and those dumplings….to die for :-).

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I thoroughly enjoy dumplings with a casserole, I remember years ago jotting down a recipe from  a cooking show, in which Rachel Allan hosted.  It was a Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Herb dumplings.  Well, need I say the recipe was divine, and the dumplings really just added this special touch to the dish. Since then, if I am wanting something special…dumplings in all forms will be added :-).

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This Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings is easily adaptable and can be made into a Gluten-Free meal as well, just by using a Gluten-Free Self Raising Flour for the dumplings. You can also substitute the full cream milk with a milk of your choice, and then obviously the cheese can be changed, if you don’t want to use tinned tomatoes, you can also use fresh chopped tomatoes…. I love versatile recipes !!!

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Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

Preparation time:  15 minutes

Cooking time: 50 – 55 minutes

Total time:  1 hour 5 minutes – 10 minutes

Ingredients:

3 – 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil/olive oil/coconut oil

2 – 3 medium-sized onions, peeled and roughly chopped

1 large garlic clove, peeled and crushed

3 – 4 large carrots, peeled and grated

2 medium-sized turnips, peeled and grated

3 – 4 sticks of celery, chopped thinly

800 grams of tomatoes

250 millilitres (1 cup) vegetable stock

3 -4 large baby marrows/zucchinis, sliced fairly thickly

1 teaspoon dried rosemary

2 teaspoons dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried origanum

200 millilitres (1/2  tin) of Coconut Cream

salt and pepper to taste

For the Dumplings:

660 millilitres self-raising wheat flour

60 grams salted butter

160 grams cheddar cheese

250 millilitres (1 cup) of full cream milk or buttermilk

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C/390 degrees F.

Firstly, once all the ingredients are prepared and measured out, in a large pot, on medium to high, heat up the oil and saute’ the onions, carrots, turnips, and celery. This will take a few minutes, stirring constantly to prevent burning.

Add the tomatoes and stir.

Pour in the prepared vegetable stock and baby marrows (zucchini’s).

Cover the pot with a lid and bring to the boil.  Once the mixture has reached boiling point, reduce the heat to simmer and allow the vegetables to simmer for ten to fifteen minutes.

Add the coconut cream and stir.

Taste, and season well with salt and pepper.

Place the vegetables in an oven-proof casserole dish approximately 20 centimeters in width by 10 centimeters in depth (8 inches in width by 4 inches in depth – it needs to hold at least 1.5 Litres/6.5 cups) and then allow extra for the dumplings on the top.

To make the dumplings:

Place the self-raising flour in a large bowl.

Add the chopped butter, salt and grated cheese.

Make a “well” in the flour, and pour in the full cream milk or buttermilk.

Using a knife, stir and mix in the flour into the milk until this mixture forms a dough.

If you feel the dough is a bit dry, add a little more milk by the tablespoon,  This should not be a very sticky dough at all.

With you hands, form balls of dough, (approximately golf ball sizes). These don’t have to be exact, the more rough and rustic they look, the more character they will have. Pack the balls of dough onto the vegetable mixture.  Brush each ball of dough with some milk and bake for about 35 to 40 minutes or until  the dumplings are golden brown and cooked through.

Serve hot and from the oven.

Enjoy 🙂

NB*  If you are wanting to add more to this meal, serve with cooked quinoa or rice…personally though, the dumpling mixture makes quite a few, so that serves as the carbs 🙂

NB*  This meal does keep in the refrigerator if need be, but it must be covered.

NB*  Check your carrots, they may just require washing and not peeling. Remember all the nutrients are in the skins, so if the skins look good, rather not peel :-).

NB*  The oven-proof dish I used was not the correct size, it was far too shallow.  The recipe does state the correct size (no less than 1.5 litres/6.5 cups)

Spring Rolls

295Spring Rolls are a real treat in my home.  They are something I love but just don’t do often enough.  I have no idea why, maybe it’s because they are a little time-consuming, but that shouldn’t matter as they are so worth the wait! Maybe it’s because they are fried in oil.  I am not keen on frying and really don’t enjoy all the fat splattering around, although I must say I have semi alleviated that problem with newspaper.  (Hubby’s idea….genius !) Yip, place newspaper around the stove top by the plates to absorb the fat splatter :-), but I still don’t like frying .  I haven’t figured out if baking them would be equally as tasty ….probably not, how could they be…Baked Spring Rolls???….Really ??? No… Never the less, what with the time aspect, and the fat aspect, and the near fire aspect….yes, the newspaper was placed too closely the plate, and the flame from the gas….need I say more….(yeah, we have fun in my kitchen 🙂 … it was soooo worth it !!! Oh, and I did my usual….pig out with them, so I guess I will be sorted for a month or two.

This Spring Rolls recipe came from a magazine which I cut out and saved many years ago. I am not sure which magazine it came from, I just remember a pile of various magazines, and my mom and I going through them saving whichever recipe we liked.

I have changed this recipe slightly to suit my tastes. What I love about Spring Rolls is the veggies, which I have added more than the original recipe stated. You can also change the veggies to your liking.  I added some finely, chopped leftover chicken this time, but this recipe can be kept strictly vegetarian as well.

244Even though the Spring Rolls are deep-fried, they literally cook so quickly. There is something about that crispy crunch of the fried thin pastry that just cracks in your mouth and then the crunchy veggies …. yum….

I have included two dipping sauces which I usually make, but also a sweet chilli sauce also tastes divine with these Spring Rolls.

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Spring Rolls

Preparation time:  40 plus minutes *

Cooking time:  30 minutes

Total time:  1 hour ten minutes *

Makes 24

Ingredients:

1 cup finely shredded green cabbage

1 cup finely shredded red/purple cabbage

2/3 medium-sized carrots, sliced finely, length-ways

2/3 green chillies, chopped finely (and seeds taken out)

1 medium-sized onion, chopped finely

6 spring onions, chopped finely

4 cloves garlic, chopped finely

2 red peppers, sliced finely, length-ways

2 cups bean sprouts

1 cup finely chopped chicken (optional)

salt and pepper to taste

24 spring roll wraps

vegetable oil for deep-frying

Instructions:

Take Spring Roll pastry squares out from the freezer.

Put some water in a saucer or small bowl, for dampening the pastry edges, and set aside

Place all the sliced and chopped vegetables in a large bowl and stir fry in a wok until slightly done, but still crisp.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Now, place a Spring Roll pastry square directly in front of you on a board, turning it so its like a diamond shape with the top corner at the top.

Using a tablespoon, scoop a spoon of veggies from the bowl and place on the Spring Roll pastry square, at the lower tip, but just slightly above the corner, allowing enough pastry to fold upwards. Fold the bottom corner over the filling.

Dampen the edges of the pastry square with a little water, and then fold in the left side, this will overlap the bottom folded over pastry slightly. Then fold the right side, this will overlap the bottom folded over pastry slightly.  The left and right corners of the pastry will practically join at the tips. Then, roll up to form a spring roll. Set aside, and continue till the quantity you are wanting to do is complete.

Deep fry the Spring Rolls for a few minutes until they are golden brown.  You will need to do them it batches.

Drain the deep-fried Spring Rolls on kitchen towel paper.

Serve immediately.

Dipping sauces:  These Dipping Sauces can be doubled up in quantity and can be stored in sterilised jars in the refrigerator for a few days.

Easy Thai Dipping Sauce (makes 1/2 cup)

Ingredients:

2 medium-sized garlic cloves

15 milliliters (1 tablespoon) fresh ginger

30 milliliters (2 tablespoons) raw honey

60 milliliters (1/4 cup) soy sauce

125 milliliters  rice wine vinegar

30 milliliters (2 tablespoons) sesame oil

De-seeded chilli, chopped up finely (optional)

Instructions:

Finely chop the garlic cloves

Grate the fresh ginger

Add all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until they are well combined.

Thai Chilli Dipping Sauce (makes 1/2 cup)

Ingredients:

3 fresh red chillies, finely chopped

2 medium-sized garlic cloves, finely chopped

62.5 milliliters (1/4 cup) brown sugar

125 milliliters (1/2 cup) water

2.5 milliliters (1/2 teaspoon) salt

7.5 milliliters (1 1/2 teaspoons) cornflour mixed with 30 milliliters (1 tablespoons) of water.

Instructions:

Put all the ingredients into a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring occasionally.  Once boiling point has reached, reduce the heat slightly and thicken with the cornflour and water mixture.

Enjoy 🙂

*  Preparation time will differ, depending on quantity and also with the Spring Roll Pastry Squares, sometimes I battle to separate them.

* Cooking time may differ, again depending on quantity.

NB*  If you don’t want this to be strictly vegetarian, feel free to add chopped meat of your choice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quinoa, Carrot and Baby Marrow Cakes

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I was in desperate need of something healthy to snack on for lunch.

Basically I had carrots that would have been looking sad in a day or two and a tray of baby marrows which wouldn’t have made even a mini baby marrow pizza! So my options were limited apart from making a stew or whatever.

I decided to concoct a little vegetable cake.  These are so simple to do and can be done in a flash, especially if you have the quinoa cooked already or whilst the quinoa is cooking the rest can be prepared. With regards to the baby marrow, these I did not cook initially at all, instead they were just grated and squeezed in a dish towel to get as much water out of them.  There is also a trick to this, sprinkle the grated baby marrow with salt, let it sit awhile, and then twist and turn the dish towel and squeeze.  Baby Marrows contain water, and it is amazing how much water will be released. The squeezing of the baby marrows is probably the hardest part of these veggie cakes, but there is nothing wrong with a bit of an arm workout.

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Quinoa, Carrot and Baby Marrow Cakes

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes (quinoa)

Total time: 40 minutes, excluding frying

Makes 10

Ingredients:

1/2 cup quinoa

4 medium sized onions, grated

350 grams baby marrows, grated

3/4 spring onions, sliced

1 jumbo sized free range egg

origanum (either dry or fresh, chopped)

salt and pepper to taste

3 very heaped tablespoons Gluten Free Tapioca Flour (cake wheat flour will work just as well)

and extra Tapioca Flour to roll cakes in before frying (cake wheat flour will work just as well)

Oil for frying

Instructions:

Cook Quinoa as per packet instructions, but using only 1/2 cup quinoa to 1 cup of boiling water, let simmer until done, approximately 15 minutes.

Grate the carrots, and set aside.

Slice the spring onions, and set aside

Grate the baby marrows.  Place on a dish towel and sprinkle with salt.  Let it sit awhile, the longer the better, and then squeeze the baby marrows to help draw out the water content.  Be careful not to pile on the salt otherwise your veggie cakes will be overly salty.

Once the water is all out as best you can, place the quinoa, carrots, baby marrow, spring onions, egg, a good sprinkling of origanum, salt and pepper into a medium sized bowl.

Mix the ingredients until combined.

Then, add a heaped tablespoon of flour at a time, mixing well, after each addition.

Shape into balls with the help of a tablespoon.

Coat each ball with a little of the extra flour and set aside.  (If you need more flour, to coat, just add accordingly)

In a large frying pan, heat up a little oil.  I used vegetable oil and fry the veggie cakes until crisp and golden brown.

Serve with a crisp salad for a healthy lunch or with baby potatoes and vegetables for dinner.

Enjoy 🙂

 

 

 

Vegetable and Nut Patties

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This is my all-time favourite vegetarian meal.  I originally found the recipe many years ago in an old South African cookbook called Budget Recipes.  It is a cookbook written in both English and Afrikaans by Robin Ayrdon.  Budget Recipes was published by Pick ‘n Pay Hypermarkets (Pty) Ltd.  Unfortunately I was not able to find an actual date in which it was published.  This recipe impressed me to the extent ‘I had to try it’, and that was the start of a vegetarian meal being cooked each and every week.

When I first tried it, I was a little dubious as the hubby is a real meat and potatoes kind of man, but he surprised me with compliments on the meal and is now looking at vegetarian meals with an open mind (but only once a week, I am not allowed to push it.)

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I have slightly changed some of the quantities of the ingredients from the original recipe…. Anyway these patties are easy to make.  I find them a little messy when making into patties with all the ingredients sticking to my hands and fingers, but that is the joy of making patties. The ingredients are not too crazy either so that makes it great.  I did add my home made Sweet Chilli Sauce just for a bit of  ‘kick’ to the dish this time, but this is totally optional.  In the past I have also added my home made Mayonnaise to the dish with pureed green chillies, both go exceptionally well with the patties.

All in all it is a great supper dish.  I love the crispness of the patties on the outside and the crunch of the vegetables and nuts on the inside.  The combination is to die for !

After eating them, it is a feeling of pure health, it is amazing, and definitely a feeling of wanting more.

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Vegetable and Nut Patties

Preparation time:  20 minutes

Cooking time:  20 minutes

Total time:  40 minutes

Serves 4 -6

Ingredients:

125 grams (125 ml) red/orange lentils

150 grams (125 ml) raw peanuts

1 large white onion

3 large carrots

2 celery stalks

10/12 weetbix cereal blocks

5 ml dried parsley, 5 ml dried thyme and 5 ml dried origanum)

4 extra large Free-Range eggs*

salt and pepper to taste

a little vegetable oil for frying

Instructions:

Soak the lentils for a few minutes and cook in microwave for 2 minutes.

Once done, drain well and set aside.

Dry toast the peanuts *

Chop the toasted raw peanuts till course and leave some whole if preferred.

Finely chop up the white onion.

Grate the carrots.

Slice the celery.

Crush the weetbix.

In a large mixing bowl add half of the crushed weetbix.  The remaining crushed weetbix place in a shallow dish, this will be used for the coating of the patties before frying them.

Then add the cooked lentils, toasted peanuts, onion, carrots to the large mixing bowl with half of the crushed weetbix.

Add the herbs, salt and pepper.

Stir well.

Lightly whisk 2 eggs with a fork and add to the mixture and combine thoroughly. (if you feel the mixture is too dry and you are unable to combine into patties, add another egg.)

In a separate bowl add some flour.  This is for coating the patties.

Whisk the remaining eggs in a bowl and set aside.  This will be used for the coating of the pattie before the coating of the crushed weetbix.

Add some flour to your hands, and with the help of a tablespoon, start making the patties.

Place each pattie into the egg mixture making sure the egg coats the entire pattie,  then cover the pattie with the crushed weetbix. *

On a medium heat, fry the patties in a little oil until each side is golden brown. Do not deep fry.

Drain the patties on paper towel to absorb any excess oil.

Serve immediately with a crisp salad or potatoes of your choice.

Enjoy 🙂

*  Depending on the size of the eggs, you may require another egg for coating the pattie.

*  I toast or ‘dry fry’ my nuts on top of the stove in a pan, with no oil as nuts produce their own natural oils.

*  Depending on how much you love weetbix, you may need to add extra crumbled weetbix for coating.