Thai-inspired green curry

January 23, 2011 § Leave a comment

Thai-inspired green curry is by no means an authentic dish, but it tastes seriously delicious and definitely made my cravings for Thai food diminish somewhat. Living in what is basically the middle of nowhere, there are actually many restaurants and grocery stores catering to Asian clientele, though sadly none for Thai food. However, I was able to scrounge around the decently-stocked “World Foods” aisle at Meijer and find some Thai curry pastes, both red and green, plus I had a few cans of coconut milk lurking around my pantry that I had stocked up on at a trip to Whole Foods a few months ago. Fortunately the paste I picked (the brand is helpfully named Thai Kitchen) is quite good: gently spicy and fragrant with lemongrass and kaffir limes.

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Lentil and chèvre salad

January 13, 2011 § Leave a comment

This is a sort of French-inspired dish I came up with once I realized that my request for “some more lentils” was interpreted as “LENTIL SHORTAGE!!!” by my mother when my parents last came to visit – if I haven’t mentioned it before, we do rather have a tendency to stock up on things in my family.

So, to begin cooking through several pounds of lentils, I figured why not make a lentil salad to start?

My mom brought me several kinds of lentils, but for the best texture, I recommend using puy lentils for this salad. As I mentioned in my last lentil-centric post’s comments section, lentilles de puy are a type of lentil that remain firmer than their reddish relatives and therefore work really well in pilaf and salad situations where you can best enjoy their nutty earthiness and toothsome texture.

To complement their earthy flavor, I added the light grassiness of dill and chives, plus a nice vinaigrette made from champagne vinegar and olive oil. Then, while rummaging around the refrigerator while letting the lentils rest I discovered some nice goat cheese, or chèvre, and crumbled it in, since I love fresh dill and chèvre together. I think it adds a certain creaminess too, to the texture of the salad, plus a bit of luxuriousness.

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Blueberry muffins

January 5, 2011 § 2 Comments

Before I dive into the huge stack of cookbooks I received/bought for the holidays, I thought it might be nice to take a dip into the family recipe box, and bake up a batch of blueberry muffins.

The recipe box is filled with all sorts of recipes – a mix of clippings and handwritten index cards, some for things you’d expect, like three kinds of brownies, and some for stranger things, such as Amish curried hand pies (and yes, I copied that recipe down to make here at school). Even now my mom and my aunt clip out recipes from their local papers – the Washington Post and the Boston Globe, respectively – and mail them to each other, and sometimes to me too. We’re really big on the handwriting thing and the postal service in this family, I guess.

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