coconut milk

Entrée, Summer, Gluten Free, Spring

WEEKNIGHT VEGETABLE CURRY

Weeknight Vegetable Curry . Sprouted Kitchen

Weeknight dinners. These are looking different than they did pre kids. I remember thinking that people with meal plans were inflexible and rigid but I understand the intrigue now. It’s far more efficient and I loooove efficiency. I see now that it does not have to be about creativity, or lack thereof, but rather reducing your market runs. So sensical, you meal planners. I stay pretty adaptable within my plan, but paused are the days of wandering multiple grocery stores grabbing whatever looks good. They say there is a season for everything. I repeat meals far more often than I used to and I take a handful of shortcuts but I am still fumbling through my days with the wee people at my feet (or on my hip and in the cupboards, more specifically). I plan for two easy staples, try two new things and then leave room for something impromptu, going out or having people over. There are usually burrito bowls with lots of grilled vegetables and avocado, a chopped salad night, something in a big pot like tortilla or lentil soup and we’ve started weekly grilled pizzas. It's simpler and that's alright. I have also taken to making more than we need so I am halfway through another meal. For example, the leftover rice and grilled portobellos from burrito night, get blitzed with a few other things in the food processor for veggie burger patties. I find it some sort of personal challenge to use what I have. Anyway, this curry was from one of my big pot situations and I just kept adding vegetables to stretch the great sauce. It is creamy, full of spices and there is just enough peanut butter for richness without making it a “peanut sauce” - I got that idea from the True Food cookbook. I am aware it is not authentic in any sense of the word but it makes for a flavorful bowl of food and a pretty quick dinner.

I don’t get asked frequently about kitchen equipment, but when I do, it is for my opinion on high powered blenders. They are quite expensive and take up a lot of cupboard real estate; I understand wanting to do your due diligence. But until KitchenAid® sent me their new ProLine® model, I actually didn’t own a blender. Well no, I have a NutriBullet which is great and has done everything I’ve needed in a blender, but that’s not the answer people are looking for. So much depends on what you use a blender for, I think. I smoothed this curry sauce in there and good gracious that thing is powerful. I knew I didn’t need to chop the garlic or ginger or worry too much about the size of my onions because the blender would take care of that. And as far making enough for two meals, this sauce was better the second day. I added another handful of vegetables, lentils and a bit more broth to stretch it with success. 

This post was created in partnership with KitchenAid® and their new ProLine® Series Blender.

Weeknight Vegetable Curry . Sprouted Kitchen

WEEKNIGHT VEGETABLE CURRY
Serves 4

The heat here will largely depend on your curry powder. I buy some from Penzey’s but know people are partial to paste versus powders as well. If you prefer paste, sub in about 1 tsp. red curry paste. Long as you use a sweet curry powder, the sambal oelek (chile paste) here should offer enough heat but adjust to your taste. You may add a pinch of cayenne if that is what you have. Taste as you good, I suppose. 

1 Tbsp. ghee or coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic
3 inch nub of peeled ginger
1 tsp. sea salt, to taste
1 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. muscavado or brown sugar
1/4 cup smooth peanut butter
1 14-oz. can coconut milk
1/2 tsp. fish sauce, optional
3/4 cup canned, diced tomatoes
1 1/2 cups coconut water or vegetable broth, as needed
1 tsp. sambal oelek (chile paste)
handful of cilantro and basil leaves
juice of one lime 

14-ounce package of extra firm tofu, drained well
3 medium carrots, 1” thick sliced on a diagonal
2 shallots, peeled and sliced thin
1 red bell pepper, cut in 2” pieces
8 ounces mushrooms, stemmed and chopped
3/4 lb. snap peas, larger ones halved

cooked brown rice, for serving

whole milk yogurt and cilantro, for topping

Weeknight Vegetable Curry . Sprouted Kitchen

In a dutch oven over medium heat, warm the ghee or coconut oil. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and salt and saute until softened but not browned. About 5 minutes. Add the cumin, curry powder, turmeric, muscavado or brown sugar and saute another minute. Add the peanut butter, coconut milk, fish sauce (if using), tomatoes and coconut water or broth and stir to mix. Let everything simmer on low for 15 minutes. Add the chile paste and cilantro and basil and transfer sauce to a blender. Run the blender until the sauce is smooth and then transfer it back to the pot. Stir in the lime juice. Taste for seasoning. It should be somewhat thick, but still thin enough that the vegetables will cook in it’s heat. Add broth or coconut water if needed. 

Cut the tofu into 1” cubes and prepare all your vegetables. Add the carrots and shallot to the pot first and cook for 5 minutes, then add the tofu, bell pepper, mushrooms and snap peas and cook another 10-15 minutes until all the vegetables are just tender but not mushy. 

For serving, serve each bowl with a scoop of rice and a generous portion of vegetables and sauce. Garnish with whole milk yogurt and cilantro. 

Weeknight Vegetable Curry . Sprouted Kitchen


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Gluten Free, Dessert

MAPLE PECAN CRUNCH ICE CREAM

Maple Pecan Crunch Ice Cream - Chocolate Shards - Sprouted Kitchen

I took the base of my ice cream maker out of the freezer because it was taking up too much real estate only to put it right back in. I love ice cream but don't make it that often. I'm really not very good at it and a pint of something is always on sale at the market to completely validate not going through the hassle. I wish I were the person whose affection for ice cream sprang up in the warm summer months but I don't discriminate based on weather. I love it, always. But now that our nearly two-year-old sees and wants every treat we reach for, I thought it was appropriate to try this coconut and cashew based recipe sweetened exclusively with maple. I've also gotten better at stashing cookies out of sight. I've made fully coconut milk-based ice creams before but adding the cashew cream was a really nice touch; breaking up the coconut milk flavor while still being super creamy. The thing is, sure it tastes different, but it is creamy and sweet with crunchy bits and a scoop with a sprinkle of granola on top is just the thing. 

Maple Pecan Crunch Ice Cream - Ingredients - Sprouted Kitchen

MAPLE PECAN CRUNCH ICE CREAM // Makes one pint

Recipe barely adapted from Icy Creamy Healthy Sweet by Christine Chitnis

As it goes with dairy free ice cream, the result is a little more icy than the real stuff. After it's completely frozen, let it sit for 10 minutes before scooping.
Note that the cashew cream requires starting a step the evening prior. 

3/4 cup real maple syrup, divided
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup pecan pieces
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup full fat coconut milk, divided
1 Tbsp arrowroot starch or cornstarch
1 cup cashew cream*
seeds of half a vanilla bean, optional
2 ounces dark chocolate, well chopped

In a cast iron pan over medium heat, warm 1/4 cup of the maple syrup and vanilla until thin. Add the pecans, sea salt and cinnamon and stir to coat. Transfer to parchment to cool completely. 

Mix the arrowroot or cornstarch in a large bowl with 2 Tbsp. of the coconut milk to dissolve. Once dissolved, stir in the remaining coconut milk, remaining 1/2 cup maple syrup, cashew cream and vanilla beans if using. Put the mixture in the fridge to chill for a couple hours. 

Churn the ice cream according to your machines instructions. In the last couple minutes, add in the mapled pecans and chocolate. Freeze for a couple hours to get a firmer, scoopable state. 

* To make cashew cream, soak 1 cup cashew nuts, covered, overnight in cold water. The next day, drain and rinse well. Blend the nuts in a high powered blender for a couple minutes with a fresh cup of cold water until completely smooth. You can adjust the amount of water for how thick you want it, for an ice cream base, you need it pretty thick. 

Maple Pecan Crunch Ice Cream - Sprouted Kitchen


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Breakfast, Entrée, Spring

OATMEAL SOUFFLE

I am months behind on reading the food magazines but am working my way backwards. I love the content towards the beginning of the year because it's the lighter, vegetable focused stuff that is nowhere to be found in all the holiday issues. I was obsessed with this piece in the March issue of Food + Wine about the "new healthy" kinds of foods - which, surprise, is just real food. It was shot by a favorite food photographer and stylist and if you can grab an issue, it's worth it. I will likely try each of the recipes but this one struck me first as I desperately need some new life in my breakfast routine. With the whipped egg white situation and the 20ish minute baking time, this may be more of a weekend thing, but I love it. The original recipe is written with whole milk but I tried a coconut milk version to keep it dairy free (operation baby gas issues over here, you use what you prefer). The texture is lighter with the souffle element,  making it a perfect dish for a brunch or part of a buffet of other breakfast goods. I also felt like the bit of extra protein made this breakfast stay with me longer, if only in my head, and Curran liked it too, so there's that. Breakfast can become a "short order" meal and I'm not always up for that. In the Southern California area, fresh berries are available, not great ones, but available. You could use some sauteed apples or pears or pomegranate and persimmons if that is what tastes fresh near you. 

OATMEAL SOUFFLE // Serves 4-6

Recipe lightly adapted from Food + Wine magazine

I opted for a dairy free version here which while it works, tastes a little cloudy as coconut milk can. Replace the liquid with 3 cups whole milk if you'd rather. To get ahead, you could do the oat and milk cooking step in advance and loosen that up with a bit more milk when you are ready to complete the recipe. You'll want to enjoy it fairly soon after baking.

1 cup thick cut rolled oats
1 14 oz. can coconut milk
1 cup almond milk
pinch of salt
2 Tbsp. turbinado sugar
seeds of half a vanilla bean
3 large eggs, separated
zest of one lemon
2 cups mixed berries, fresh or frozen, chopped
pure maple syrup, to finish
toasted coconut, hemp seeds, granola etc., for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350' and grease a 2 qt. baking dish (or comprable smaller dishes). 

In a large saucepan, combine the oats, coconut milk, almond milk, salt, sugar and vanilla bean. Bring it to a gentle simmer and cook for about 15 minutes until the oats soften and the mixture begins to thicken. Remove the pot from the heat. 

Separate the eggs. Once the oats have cooled slightly, mix in the yolks completely. With a stand or electric mixer, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites and lemon zest into the oat mixture until incorporated but not over mixed. Fold in a handful of the berries.

Pour the mixture into your prepared pan(s) and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the top is just puffed and golden. 

Pour a bit of maple on top (I liberally brushed some on) and garnish the top with fresh berries, toasted coconut or goodies of choice. 

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