I keep telling myself that it would probably be a lot easier, and I’d probably end up writing a bit better, if I just wrote my posts right away after the process of cooking some new dish. However, then life gets in the way, and I’m manager all day, and then I’m out on the ice all day, and then I’m in the office and driving a shuttle and being manager all day, and then I’m on the ice all day again, and suddenly it was five days ago that I cooked this vegan curry feast that I want to tell you about.
Even this morning as I start typing, I’m a little reluctant, because I know that likely it’ll be another busy day, and once I start here, I’ll want to finish, which could be a challenge. But if I don’t do it now, I know it’ll be another couple days, at least, before a post happens. Anyways, all that to say, we’ve hit the busy season at the guide service here! (and the lovely columbine up there has nothing to do with this post; I just wanted to share a little of the Wrangell wildflowers!)
Last weekend, my lovely friend Kayla had told me I could stay at her house while she was gone for a few days; it’s a great house – creative and open and with lots of windows letting the sun in. So on Sunday, I told Joe he should come up for dinner, and I starting browsing through recipes and planning a menu for the evening. I had a few specific ingredients I needed to use, and a couple recipes I’d wanted to try, and then I went from there. It had been a while, quite a while, since I’d actually cooked a nice full meal, so I kind of felt like making this one big.
After looking through a few different recipe ideas, I settled on a curry theme menu, which happened to be entirely vegan (which is actually pretty consistent with my regular diet of late, more by chance than by choice!). I was pretty proud of myself actually; I had planned out a salad, soup, main course with flatbread, and a dessert. I haven’t made such a well planned menu in quite sometime!
For the salad, I picked some spinach from my garden, sliced up some cabbage (not from my garden….), added some mung beans I’d been sprouting, and chopped an avocado. I made a simple dressing with olive oil, rice vinegar, fresh ginger and garlic. The flavors along with the combination of crunchy and smooth textures was awesome!
In this post I’m sharing the soup recipe with you. I’ve still got a bag of carrots from the last time I was in Anchorage, and this looked like a great way to use them. The one drawback was the lack of a blender or food processor with which to puree the soup, so instead I got to try out my very fun new kitchen toy.
Back in May, I’d given into a salesperson’s pitch for a hand powered vegetable chopper deal. It also has an attachment you can use to beat egg whites and whipping cream by hand, and that was appealing to me, since I spend a bit of time in places without electricity. So I spent $20 and bought one, even though I still felt like I was working pretty hard to justify the purchase. Then, I realized I could make hummus with it. HURRAH! Total justification right there. Now, I know I can also puree soup by hand (which my friend David found “so romantic”… I think he was a bit impressed by the extra effort, but it really was pretty simple!). The soup was a wonderful flavor combination, and worked great along with the curry. It’s also a great soup to scoop up with some good homemade bread.
Carrot Ginger Soup
2 tbsp olive oil
4 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp ground coriander seed
1/2 tsp ground mustard seed
1 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 medium onion, chopped
1 pound carrots, peeled and chopped (I couldn’t weigh mine, but used about 4)
about 2 cups chicken broth
1 cup coconut milk
juice of half a lime
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan. Add the ginger, coriander, mustard, curry and cayenne, stirring constantly for about 1 minute. Add the onion and carrots to the pan and saute for a couple more minutes before stirring in the broth (you want enough to just cover the veggies). Cover and bring to a boil, cooking until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Working in batches, puree the soup, in a blender, or food processor, or handy hand-powered kitchen gadget. Stir in the coconut milk and lime; heat through and serve.