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Potato and Green Pea Curry is nutritious, vegan deliciousness in one pot. This easily adaptable curry is enhanced by the fluffy and flavorful Garlic Herbed Naan shown here. All of this can be made ahead and warmed when you are ready to eat. It’s another wonderful Meatless Monday – or any day – option.
As those who follow me know, my husband and I have moved to eating vegetarian and vegan meals about 5 days a week. So I am always on the lookout for something that suits our tastes, is nutritious and deeply satisfying. These days, it is easier and easier to follow a vegan diet. While I admit that I am not sold on plant-based yogurt or certain meat look-alike substitutes, they are readily available. And for those who want them, their taste and costs are improving every day.
As with any meal plan you follow, it is important to put together a meal that is appealing and nutritious. After all, just being “good for you or the planet” isn’t much solace if the food doesn’t taste great. Mediterranean and South Asian cuisines lend themselves to vegan or vegetarian preparations. A place for encouragement and great recipes is Pick Up Limes, which is where these recipes originated. This vlogger is a registered nutritionist and a walking advertisement for veganism in a totally non-judgmental package.
While I made Potato and Green Curry as written, it is easily adaptable to using other veg. But because I want as much nutritious bang for my efforts, I know that this recipe covers all of the bases. I also liked that it all came together in under an hour and that I could prep it ahead. Being retired doesn’t mean that I necessarily want to spend hours in the kitchen. My husband and I love to take long walks. When we arrive home happily tired, I want a delicious dinner that comes together quickly and easily. This fits the bill.
Naan is pretty available where we live, but my husband and I enjoy baking most of our own bread. The naan shown here also comes together quickly and the seasonings can be changed to suit your tastes. While the original recipe called for plant-based yogurt and non-dairy milk, mine was made with Bulgarian natural yogurt and 2% milk. We do use soy milk as well in our house, but this is what I went with. I also deviated by using ajwain or carom seed and fresh vs. dried parsley. If you don’t have or don’t like ajwain, commonly used in Indian cuisine, you can leave it out or substitute cumin seed.
When my husband gives me an enthusiastic response to a vegan dish, I know that it is worth sharing. He was brought up in a very meat-eating family. These dishes are not look-alike substitutes for meat. Nor are they trying to fool you into thinking that you are eating meat when you aren’t. They are, however, delicious meals in their own right and can be enjoyed whether you have adopted a vegan/vegetarian lifestyle or are simply looking for new dinner ideas.
As with many South Asian and Middle Eastern/Mediterranean meals, this recipe appears to have a LOT of ingredients. Most are spices that any home who eats these foods would readily have on hand. So don’t be scared off. And the fresher your spices, the more flavorful your food!
Yield: 4 servings
1 Tablespoon neutral vegetable oil
2 teaspoons each: whole cumin, coriander and brown mustard seeds
1 medium onion, peeled and diced
3 large cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
1 Tablespoon, grated or minced fresh ginger
1 vegetable bouillon cube
1 Tablespoon garam masala
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (I did NOT use this and didn’t miss it)
3 to 4 medium potatoes (I used Yukon Gold, but a red potato or even Russet would work) peeled and cut into small cubes
1.5 cups of water
1 cup frozen, thawed green peas
1 can (about 15 oz.) or 1.5 cups cooked, drained chickpeas
1 can (about 399 ml. or 13 oz.) full-fat coconut milk
About 2 generous cups fresh baby spinach, torn
Basmati or other rice
I find if I prep everything first then the actual cooking is a snap. It may mean a couple of extra bowls, but it really is so much faster and easier in the end. And nothing ever gets missed that way. Neither am I sent scrambling to suddenly mince or grate something.
In a 3.5 quart or bigger pot, add the oil and heat on medium high. When the oil is hot, add the whole seeds and toast for 30 to 60 seconds. This will “bloom” the spices.
Add the chopped onion next and cook until translucent – about 3 to 5 minutes. If it appears that the spices are getting too dry, you can splash in a Tablespoon of water.
Next add the garlic and ginger and cook for two more minutes or until fragrant.
The bouillon cube, garam masala and turmeric go in next. If you are using cayenne pepper, add it here as well. Stir for 30 to 60 seconds.
Potatoes and water are added now. Partially cover the pot and bring to a simmer. Cook until the potatoes are tender – about 15 minutes.
Now add the peas, chickpeas and coconut milk. Stir through well and cook until warmed. This can be done ahead up to this point. When you are ready to serve, add the spinach and cook through until wilted. This should only take a few minutes. Serve hot.