I figured January called for a healthy recipe. After all, it is the month of resolutions and new starts. The problem is, because it’s cold, dreary and dark here in January, I never really feel like eating salad, or anything cold for that matter. Granted, there are so many things you can do with vegetables besides make a salad, but I’ve been lazy on the food front lately. But this weekend I felt inspired and on Sunday, I spent a good portion of the evening cooking. This healthy vegetable curry was, by far, the best thing I made that night. I also made a delicious beef and asparagus stir-fry for Matt, but it doesn’t really count as my recipe because I used Trader Joe’s Soyaki Sauce for the marinade. Guys, that sauce is so delicious. I rarely buy bottled sauces, because I like to make my own but, as I already mentioned, I’ve been lazy on the food front this month. If you ever need a quick dinner, marinate some meat or tofu in this sauce and stir-fry it with some veggies. It is so versatile and so delicious. But, back to the veggie curry, the star of this blog post.
This vegetable curry ranks up there with some of the best things I’ve ever made. It is so delicious and really healthy. It’s chock full of veggies like kale and broccoli. And, although I used chicken stock in mine, you can certainly use vegetable stock or even water to make this vegan. It’s very rare to find a dish that is both truly healthy and also flavorful but I’m proud to say, this dish achieves both. You can’t rush this recipe though. It doesn’t take a ridiculously long time to cook, but there are a few steps you can’t skip. You have to let the onions caramelize and add the ingredients in stages and once all the ingredients are in, you have to let the curry simmer to allow the flavors and spices to “wake up” and meld together. The whole process takes about an hour but it’s so worth it and, really, an hour isn’t that long. Especially when you consider the fact that after just one hour, you are left with a delicious curry that tastes like it’s been simmering all day.
Also, this is a one pot meal. Another bonus.
Healthy vegetable curry
2 tbsp. of ghee (clarified butter) – *if you don’t have ghee, you can use vegetable oil or canola oil
1 onion, diced
3 carrots, diced
1/2 cup of water
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 (heaping) tablespoon of grated ginger
1 tsp. garam masala
1 tsp. coriander
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. cayenne
1 (heaping) tbsp. of tomato paste
1 can of chickpeas, drained
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 can of light coconut milk
1 cup of chicken or vegetable stock
4 cups of chopped kale (about half of bag if you’re buying the pre-chopped stuff)
1 cup of frozen broccoli florets
salt & pepper
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup of chopped cilantro (optional. I actually didn’t have cilantro so I didn’t add it to mine, but it would make a really great addition if you have it on hand.)
1. In a large pot or dutch oven, heat the 2 tablespoons of ghee or vegetable oil over medium heat. Once the oil is hot add in the onions and let them cook for 5 minutes. Then add the carrots and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Let the onions and carrots cook for 10 more minutes until the onions are caramelized and really brown. Keep 1/2 cup of water near the stove. If the onions and carrots start to burn or stick, pour a little water (a tbsp. or so at a time) into the pot and stir.
2. Add the garlic and the ginger and stir for 1 minute. Next, add the spices and stir for 1 more minute. Again, add a bit more water if the mixture starts to stick. Add the tomato paste and stir for 1 more minute.
3. Add the chickpeas and the can of diced tomatoes (juice and all) and stir. Scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of pan.
4. Next, add the coconut milk and 1 cup of chicken or vegetable stock. Bring the mixture up to a boil. Add the kale in batches until it wilts. Then, add the frozen broccoli florets. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and let the curry come up to a boil again. Then, reduce the heat, cover and let simmer on low heat for 30 minutes.
5. Serve over brown rice and sprinkle with green onion and cilantro (if you have it)!