Curry is such an interesting concept. When a dish is “curried” it most likely means that it is cooked with a mixture of spices, but there isn’t one mix that define a curry. Indians use ground dry spices, Jamaicans add allspice and Thai make a paste with fresh ingredients. Yet all are call “curry.”
But with a broad definition comes freedom. I love the process of picking out my spices and experiencing their aromas hide and mingle into the concoction. The flavor potential seem endless, and the anticipation for the final taste after they are stewed is mouthwatering! You can always go to the grocery store and pick up a bottle of curry power, but why miss out?
This curry is a mixture of cumin, cayenne, turmeric, allspice, coriander, fennel seeds and dijon mustard. I toast the whole spices (cumin, allspice, coriander and fennel seeds), grind them into a powder and then mix them with the turmeric and cayenne. I then create a very dry paste by mixing in the dijon mustard and a tiny bit of olive oil. The spices are then sauteed with onions, ginger and garlic and simmered in chicken broth, cinnamon and a bay leaf.
The curry sauce is combined with roasted cauliflower and squash. Roasting the cauliflower and squash extracts some of the natural sugars and produces a nice, toothsome texture. You won’t even miss the meat (what? it’s vegetarian?!)
Once the curry sauce and the vegetables are mixed together, you are left with a comforting, health and fantastic curry.
Roasted Vegetable Curry
Yield: 2 servings
1 tsp Coriander
1.5 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Turmeric
1 tsp Cayenne
1 tsp Fennel/Anise Seeds
4 Allspice berries
½ Cauliflower, cut into bite-sized florets
1 lb Butternut Squash, cubed
1 medium onion, diced
½ inch Ginger, diced
1 clove Garlic, diced
½ tsp Spicy Dijon Mustard
¼ of a large Tomato, diced
1 cup Chicken Stock, homemade or Vegetable Stock
1 inch Cinnamon stick
1 Bay leaf
1 tbsp Yogurt
¼ cup Frozen Peas
1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
2. Make the curry powder by combining the ground coriander, cumin, turmeric, cayenne and allspice.
3. Place the cauliflower and butternut squash in a cast-iron skillet (or baking dish). Dress it with olive oil and season it with salt, pepper and about ¼ of the spice mixture. Roast for about 25-30 minutes, or until everything is fork-tender.
4. Saute the onions for about 5-8 minutes and then add the ginger. Continue to saute until the onions are dark, but not burned. One minute before the onions are done, add the garlic. Continue to cook the mixture until the garlic is no longer raw.
5. While the onions saute, add the mustard to the spice mixture, then add enough olive oil for the spices to come together (probably less than a teaspoon).
6. Season the onion mixture with salt and pepper, and then the rest of the spice mixture. Then add the tomatoes.
7. Add the chicken stock, bay leaf and cinnamon stick and simmer on low for about 20 minutes.
9. Remove the bay leaf and cinnamon from the sauce, add the peas, yogurt and season with salt. Continue to simmer for another minute, or until the peas are cooked through.
10. Combined the roasted vegetables with curry sauce and serve.
Optional Additions: Garnish with Cilantro and serve with Raita