I think I just quited a kid's movie from the eighties. Shoot me now.
Curry was tonight's dinner. The sauce was based on canned sweet potato, which - and hell is freezing over as I write this - Gabe liked.
I threw together my own curry spice mix tonight kinda sorta making a conglomeration that's not really any of the three mixes listed in How to Cook Everything; I wasn't intending to be inventive, but I didn't have all of the ingredients for any one of Bittman's curry recipes. Since any of those Indian spices can be used together, I figured winging it couldn't hurt. The result was flavorful in a dark sort of way, and a little spicy. Chris liked it, so it's a win!
Not that I've ever had a disagreement with pre-mixed jars of curry spices, but I like to get to the source when possible.
I think that this sauce can also work with plain yogurt stirred in at the end, but I have ruined too many dairy recipes recently (I'm looking at you, cheese sauce) to say for sure until I have tested it.
Curry in a Hurry (quick meal)
With a jar of curry spices, a can of pureed vegetables, and some chopped vegetables and meats, you can put together a quick and nutritious meal.
In a pot combine:
1 15 ounce can of pureed pumpkin, pureed sweet potato, or other vegetable, or a small can of tomato paste
1 or 2 cups of water
1 teaspoon curry powder
¼ teaspoon salt
(optional) minced or dried garlic
(optional) minced or dried ginger
(optional) 1 or 2 tablespoons sugar
Bring this sauce to a simmer. Then, if you want meat in your curry, add:
1 pound of raw meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
Simmer the meat until it is cooked through. While the meat cooks, chop up vegetables. You can use pre-cooked meats instead of raw meat; add it to the curry right before serving. You can also use tofu instead of meat, or omit the meat entirely. You could also substitute paneer, a delicious Indian cheese, if you are lucky enough to live near an Indian grocery store.
4 or more cups of vegetables cut into bite-sized pieces.
Possible vegetables for this dish include bell pepper, carrot, beet, turnip, broccoli, cauliflower, potato, peas, and onion. Frozen vegetables can also be used. Combine two or three vegetables for best results. Continue to simmer the pot, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender.
Serve over rice. This feeds 3 or 4 people.