Sunday, December 18, 2011

Rava Dosas with Potato Chickpea Masala

I remembered that I promised I would blog about an Indian dish that I mentioned back in August, so here you go!

Rava dosas are savory crepes made with semolina and rice flours. You can buy just the amount you need of these flours in bulk if you don't cook with them very often. The filling is a hearty mixture of potatoes, onion, peas, chickpeas, and lots of delicious spices. I didn't change a thing about this recipe.

This will be my last post until after Christmas. Thank you for reading my blog and I wish you all a very happy holiday season, however you choose to celebrate it!

We bought Sid some festive holiday attire - he was not amused:

Pinterest, you little devil of a website, continually giving me new ideas! Take your wedding invitation, cut it up into ribbons, curl them around a pencil, then stuff them into an ornament. Fun memory!

Rava Dosas with Potato Chickpea Masala
adapted from Gourmet - November 2009
serves 4

Notes: The masala filling, without the coconut and cilantro, can be made up to 6 hours ahead of time and chilled. Reheat before stirring in coconut and cilantro.

For the filling:
1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup dried grated unsweetened coconut
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 (3-inch) fresh jalapeno, coarsely chopped, including seeds (or not, if you want it to be less spicy)
1 (2 1/2-inch) piece peeled ginger, coarsely chopped
3 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 3/4 cups water, divided
1 large onion, chopped (about 3 cups)
1 (15 to 19 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup frozen peas (do not thaw)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

For the Rava Dosas:
1/2 cup semolina flour
1/2 cup rice flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
Vegetable oil for brushing

Put the potatoes into a bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside.

In a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, toast the coconut, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes or until toasted. Transfer to a small bowl and wipe out the skillet. Now toast the cumin seeds in the same skillet over medium heat, shaking frequently, for about 30 seconds, so that they are just a shade darker. Transfer to another small bowl and set aside. Reserve skillet.

In a blender or small food processor, puree the jalapeno, ginger, garlic, curry powder, cinnamon, turmeric, oil, 1/4 of the water, and 1 teaspoon salt until smooth. Transfer this puree to the skillet you were using earlier and cook over medium-high heat for about one minute, stirring occasionally, until thickened slightly. Add the onion and cook until it begins to soften, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes.

Drain the potatoes, then add them to the onion mixture, along with the toasted cumin seeds, and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are barely tender.

Add the chickpeas and the remaining 1 1/2 cups of water, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the skillet. Heat the mixture up to a brisk simmer and cover. Cook for another 16-20 minutes more, or until the potatoes are tender.

While the potatoes cook, make the dosas. Whisk together the flours, cumin seeds, salt, and water in a bowl. Generously brush a 12-inch nonstick skillet with oil and heat over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Pour 1/2 cup of the batter into the skillet, swirling the pan until it evenly coats the bottom. Cook, undisturbed, for about 2 minutes, until the dosa is set and the edges are golden brown. Using a rubber spatula, flip the dosa and let the other side cook for about a minute, so that the underside becomes golden in spots. Transfer to a plate. Continue making dosas with the remaining batter, adding more oil to the skillet each time. Stack the dosas on a plate and cover loosely with foil to keep warm.

When the potatoes are tender, add the peas and cook until just tender, another 3 minutes. Off heat, stir in the toasted coconut and cilantro.

To serve, spoon masala filling into dosas. 

Monday, December 12, 2011

A Really. Good. Sandwich.

This past fall I made apple butter using the recipe from Canning for a New Generation. The author was kind enough to include a side note with many thoughtful suggestions on how to use it, besides the obvious method of just spreading it onto a biscuit or toast. Apple butter can be used instead of apple sauce in baking, it can be added to oatmeal, and yes, it can be used on sandwiches.

This sandwich may be simple but it's big on flavor. Ingredients: Good rye bread. Black forest ham. Sharp cheddar cheese. A generous slathering of apple butter. Done. You could grill it if you wish, but we just ate it cold. I loved how the savory flavors in the rye bread mingled with the sweet apple butter. It was amazing.

Try it.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Harvest Baked Apples, CSA Wrap-up

I don't make desserts like this often, but we had been getting all these great apples in the CSA that I wanted to finally do something really special with them. I used a ton of substitutions and it still tasted great. Raisins for currents, apple juice for apple cider, spiced rum for dark rum - I even substituted white vinegar for lemon juice! Did you know you can do that? It wouldn't work in all situations obviously, but in this case we didn't even notice.

This is the last CSA of the season! This was our first year doing a full CSA box all on our own, and overall we were very pleased with the quality of Denison's produce. Very, very little was wasted. Even though it was challenging at times, I was almost always able to plan meals that used up everything. During the weeks when I had more time I tried to plan new and interesting meals (things that would be fun to blog about), and during busier weeks I froze things for later, made vegetable soup, roasted a huge pan of mixed veggies, etc.

Behold, a photo collage displaying all 26 weeks of yummy CSA goodness:

Now, back to my regular recap of the box....

CSA Week 26:

In the box: 1 celery, 1 bunch beets, 2 leeks, 1/2 pound Jimmy Nardelo peppers, 1 bunch kale, 2 Delicata squash, 1 1/2 pounds baby sweet potatoes, 2 pounds Butterball potatoes, 2 pounds Braeburn apples

Beets were used last week on the salad. We also roasted those baby sweet potatoes to go with it.

A quick note about beets...I like to chop the greens off the beets right away and store them wrapped in a paper towel in a plastic bag in the fridge. If you leave the greens attached they will wilt very quickly.

I made Bittman's recipe for leek and potato soup using up all the leeks and most of the Butterball potatoes.

The peppers, beet greens, and most of the kale, as I already mentioned, were used last week alongside some delicious elk steak. The sweet red peppers saute really well and made a great side dish just as they are. Now that's it's officially winter and fresh peppers are growing scarce in the store I miss them dearly.

I made Rick Bayless' tortilla soup recipe and I threw in a bunch of leftover shredded turkey from Thanksgiving and a handful of thinly sliced kale. Traditional? No way. Tasty? Mmmmmm yes.

If you want an excellent go-to dish for winter squash, look no further than Bittman's Braised and Glazed Butternut Squash recipe. We used Delicata squash. So amazing and will go with lots of different main courses. We baked up a couple of Cousin Jack's Pastys to go with it this time. 

I have a funny story about the remaining Butterball potatoes. Ever since I got the Julia Child cooking show DVDs last Christmas I've been wanting to make a recipe from her "Potato Show". Well, I finally got around to putting in on the menu. It's supposed to be a quiche-type dish, but without a crust: layers of sliced boiled potatoes, caramelized onions, sliced kielbasa sausage, with an egg/milk mixture poured over everything. Then it's topped with a few pats of butter and shredded cheese and baked until bubbly and brown on top. So, guess what crucial ingredient I accidentally left out? EGGS! You know, the thing that would have bound it all together and made it, um, a quiche?? Yeah, totally skipped that part, and I didn't notice until I took it out of the oven and tried to cut into it. But as Julia Child says, when something like that happens, "you haven't lost anything". Instead, what we had was a delicious, creamy, baked potato, sausage and onion soup. So there.

Harvest Baked Apples
adapted from Cuisine At Home - October 2007, Issue 65
makes 4 apples

4 Braeburn or Gala apples

For the filling: 
Chopped apple flesh (from the above apples)
1/3 cup dried currants (dried raisins or cranberries would work too)
1/4 cup almonds, chopped
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon dark rum (optional)
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Juice of 1/2 lemon (emergency substitute: a couple tablespoons white vinegar)
Salt to taste
1/2 cup apple cider, divided (apple juice, no sugar added, works too)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 8 cubes

For the topping:
1/4 cup rolled oats
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold, cubed
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
Salt to taste

Optional additional topping:
1/4 cup plain yogurt, divided

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lighly spray a 9 inch glass pie plate or square baking dish with cooking spray.

Get the apples ready for the filling using a melon baller. Scoop out the core and some of the flesh from each apple, being careful not to get carried away and make a hole in the side or the bottom (I did that on one of mine, but luckily I was able to fit the piece back in so nothing leaked out). You only need each apple to hold about 1/4 cup of filling. Chop the seedless flesh for the filling.

In a medium bowl, combine the chopped apple, currants, almonds, brown sugar, 2 teaspoons flour, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, lemon juice, and salt. Stuff the filling into the apples and place them in the prepared baking dish. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the cider into each cavity. Top each apple with a cube of butter. Add the remaining cider and butter cubes to the baking dish.

In a small bowl, use your clean fingers to combine the oats, 2 tablespoons flour, sugar, 1 tablespoon butter, water, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, almond extract, and salt to taste. Mix until crumbly. Top each apple with a generous tablespoon of the mixture onto each apple, pressing down to it stays put.

Bake the apples for 35-45 minutes, or until easily pierced with a knife but not mushy (I thought mine were easily pierced at 35 minutes, but it was not as done in the middle as it could have been, so I would err on the latter end of the baking time if I were you).

Let apple cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before eating.

To serve, top with yogurt, if using, and drizzle with the pan juices. 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...