Monday, December 10, 2012

Lentil Vindaloo

This recipe came out of a deep desire to eat curry on our first sub-zero day of the winter....Brrrr!  And the need to use up some of our 150lbs of potatoes!

I originally went looking for an Aloo Mattar (potato & pea curry) recipe.  I found one that looked delicious, but I didn't have all the ingredients.

Then I remembered the Penzey's Vindaloo Seasoning in my cupboard.

I love vindaloo.

Oh, but it's traditionally made with lamb.  I don't eat much meat anymore and I'd had my fill this weekend.


Lentils!  The perfect answer!  Not only did I have some hanging out in the pantry, but they cook up right with the potatoes, no need to pre-soak or cook for hours!

Oh, and they were delicious, too.

Lentil Vindaloo
Adapted from directions for Penzey's Vindaloo Seasoning, www. 

5 TBSP Penzey's Vindaloo Seasoning
2 cups plus 5 TBSP water
6-8 red potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 TBSP + 1 TBSP coconut oil
1 large onion, minced
6 TBSP white vinegar
1 tsp salt
1 cup lentils, picked over, rinsed and drained

In a cup or small bowl, mix 5 TBSP Penzey's Vindaloo Seasoning with 5 TBSP water.  Set aside.  Heat 3 TBSP coconut oil in stockpot over medium-high heat.  Add potatoes and cook until starting to brown.  Remove from pot and set aside.  Add remaining 1 TBSP coconut oil and onions to pot, cook until starting to soften.  To the onions in the pot, add the seasoning mix, the potatoes, and the remaining ingredients.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes until potatoes are tender and lentils are cooked through. 

Serve with rice or flatbread. 

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Curried Split Pea Soup

This post was first published on my other blog "Another Drop In The Bucket" on 1-27-11.

My first attempt at a food post.  I figure at least this way I can't lose the recipe!

I've been craving this soup since the first time I made it a few weeks ago.  I had never had split peas before and wasn't sure I would like them so I stuck to the recipe the first time.  I hate fresh peas, so dried split peas was a leap of faith for me.  This soup is delicious and filling. Best of all, Liam loves it!

Curried Split Pea Soup (Adapted from Alton Brown's recipe as published on

2 TBSP unsalted butter
Salt & pepper
1/2 large white onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 TBSP curry powder
Cayenne pepper, to taste (I used 4 shakes of the jar, maybe 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon?)
6 cups chicken broth or stock
12 oz. dried green split peas, picked over and rinsed
1/2 pound carrots, peeled and sliced
2 medium potatoes, (approx 14 oz), washed and cubed
Plain yogurt
Crushed red pepper for sprinkling

Melt the butter in a large stockpot over medium heat.  Add onion and salt and pepper, cook for 2-3 minutes.  Add garlic, cook for an additional 30 seconds.  Add curry powder and cayenne, cook for another 30 seconds.  Make sure you do not allow the onion and garlic to brown.  Add broth and peas, bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat and simmer for one hour.  Add carrots and potatoes, continue simmering until vegetables reach the desired tenderness, about 20 minutes.  (This will vary depending on how thick your vegetables are.)  Using a  stick blender, puree soup until it reaches desired consistency.  I like mine nice and thick but not too pureed that it's like baby food.  You may need to add water if you like a little thinner soup.  Serve with a dollop of plain yogurt and a sprinkling of crushed red pepper.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Spring Is Here!


Seriously, this is the forecast here for the next few days.  I think Minnesota forgot that it's only early March!


 I even got to work in the garden!

Before: the doggies have been digging.  Bad doggies!

After: All cleaned up and holes filled!

With the forecast we've got, I may be eating fresh chives bu the end of the week!

My favorite garden ornament: a frog I found in the previous owner's garbage pile.
Froggie ain't got no eyeballs. 
Filling flats to start seeds.  Not often I do that outdoors in March!
I started my edibles in the basement this week.  Tomatoes, peppers, eggplant so far.  We'll see what else I get around to by the end of the week.  It's going to be hard to dedicate time indoors with this gorgeous forecast!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Chipotle And Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup

 I hadn't planned on blogging this.  It's just something I threw together. However, I had a request for the recipe before I had even tasted it to know if it was any good!

This soup has ingredients, but not really a recipe.  Everything is dependent on how big your squash are and your taste for spicy heat and garlic. So I'll tell you what went into this batch, and you can adjust from there. 


Chipotle And Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup

4 small butternut squash, washed, halved, and seeded

1 head garlic

Olive oil

Canned chipotle chiles in adobo - I used three and some sauce. This was perfect for me but would have been too hot for my husband. Use your own judgement, always starting with less than you think you need. 

Vegetable broth- I used 4 cups

Salt, to taste- I used a couple pinches for the whole pot. 


Place squash halves cut-side down in a lightly oiled baking pan. Add water to pan until it goes halfway up the sides of the squash halves. 

Cut tips off of garlic cloves,  leaving head intact. Lightly coat cut ends with olive oil and wrap head of garlic in aluminum foil. 

Roast both squash and garlic in a 350 degree oven for about one hour. Remove from oven and let cool.

When squash is cool enough to handle, scrape flesh into a stockpot. Squeeze individual cloves from the garlic head into the pot. Add chipotle chiles and sauce, salt, and vegetable broth.  Use an immersion blender to purée all ingredients, adding more broth as necessary to reach desired consistency.  

Heat on stove, stirring frequently, and serve. 


Just a couple notes on this recipe:

     -If you don't have an immersion blender, you can purée this soup in a food processor or regular blender, working in batches. If you do it in a regular blender, DO NOT do it when the ingredients are hot. The steam cannot escape from a regular blender and it will explode all over. 

     -I served this with crushed Beanitos chips on top- they fit into the wacko elimination diet I'm currently on. Regular tortilla chips would be good, as would big homemade croutons or a side of a nice crusty bread. (Mmmm, I miss bread.)

     -Garlic, chiles and salt can be easily adjusted to taste in this recipe. Always remember to start with less than you think you want and taste between additions.  


This soup was the perfect thing to warm my belly on a cold Minnesota winter day. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Chile Lime Potato Chips

When you're on a really restrictive elimination diet, you sometimes have to get creative.  I had a huge craving for guacamole tonight but I usually eat it with chips.  Corn is on the "NO" list.  Ok, so Blue Diamond Nut-Thins- rice and nuts, right?  Yep, and butter.  Dairy is also on the "NO" list.  Grrr.  So I looked up a recipe for gluten-free crackers.  I found one that looked good, but it calls for either arrowroot powder or cornstarch.  I have no arrowroot powder, and remember...corn is on the "NO" list.  
I sat and stewed about it for a while.  I really, really, REALLY wanted guacamole!  On beans?  Nope, don't have any that aren't dried.  On chicken?  Frozen.  Then, finally, AHA! On homemade chile lime potato chips!  Potatoes, lime juice, olive oil, ancho and chipotle chile powders, and salt to taste.  Bake in a single layer at 400 degrees until crispy.  They absolutely hit the spot!