Tomato Achaar Shakshuka

1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 1/2 cups tomato, diced
1-2 tablespoons Brooklyn Delhi tomato achaar, more if you’d like
2-3 eggs
salt and pepper, to taste
parsley, chopped
feta, crumbled

Heat the oil in a pan on medium. Add the onions and red bell pepper and saute until soft. Add the garlic and fry for a minute. Add the tomatoes, tomato achaar and salt and pepper to taste. Bring the sauce to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low, stirring from time to time until the tomatoes are soft, 12-15 minutes.

With a spoon, make 2 indentations in the pan. Break one of the eggs into a small bowl and carefully slide it into one of the indentations. Repeat this same process with your other egg. Cover the pan and cook on low for about 5 minutes, until the egg whites are set and the yolks are still soft and runny. Turn off the stove.

Garnish with parsley and feta. Serve immediately with crusty bread or warm tortillas and more tomato achaar on the side.

Quick Coconut Curry Noodle Soup

1 Brooklyn Delhi Golden Coconut Curry Simmer Sauce
1 (13.5 ounce) can coconut milk
2 cups mild vegetable stock
2 lbs chopped veggies of choice (i.e. carrots, broccoli, sturdy greens like kale)
2 tablespoons of mild-flavored oil such as sunflower
12 ounces tofu, cut into 1 inch cubes or triangles
salt to taste

For Serving
limes
8 ounces noodles of choice (such as rice, soba or ramen)
oil for tossing the noodles (such as sunflower)
coconut chips, optional
Brooklyn Delhi Tomato Achaar, for heat

In a large wok, 2 tablespoons oil in a wide skillet over medium heat (preferably nonstick) until it shimmers. Add the tofu in a single layer and cook until golden on the bottom, 2-4 minutes. Flip each piece and cook on a second side until golden.

Add the Golden Coconut Curry simmer sauce, coconut milks and stock. Add your veggies with salt. Increase the heat to bring the curry to a simmer, then lower the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 10 minutes. Add salt to taste.

Cook the noodles according to the package instructions, drain, rinse with cool water to prevent sticking, and toss with a bit of oil.

To serve, place a nest of noodles in a bowl and top with the veggies and soup, tofu, a good squeeze of lime, and a sprinkling of optional coconut chips. Serve with Tomato Achaar for heat.

Roasted Cauliflower with Pancetta, Olives, and Parmesan

1 large head cauliflower (about 1 3/4 pounds), trimmed and cut into bite-size florets (about 8 cups)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
1/3 cup olives, crushed, pitted and chopped
1 fat garlic clove, finely grated or minced
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste
1/8 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more as needed
4 ounces pancetta or bacon, cut into 1/8-inch cubes
3/4 teaspoon cumin or caraway seeds
1/2 cup shredded (not ground) Parmesan
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or mint leaves and tender stems, for serving

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Place cauliflower on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt until well coated. Roast for 15 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together olives, garlic, lemon juice, 1/8 teaspoon red-pepper flakes and a large pinch of salt. Drizzle in the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, whisking well.

After the cauliflower has roasted for 15 minutes, add pancetta and cumin seeds to pan and gently mix to combine. Sprinkle Parmesan on top and roast for another 15 to 20 minutes, until cauliflower is tender, the pancetta rendered, and cheese is golden brown and crunchy.

Spoon olive dressing all over roasted cauliflower while still hot and toss to combine. Taste, and add more salt, red-pepper flakes or lemon juice, if needed. Scatter parsley over the top before serving.

Baked Sriracha-Mango Cauliflower

1 head of cauliflower mine was small-medium-ish size

Batter
1 cup (250 ml) water
3/4 cup (94 g) + 2 Tbsp flour (I used half whole wheat + half white , (use 1/2 cup chickpea flour + 1/4 cup or more rice flour to make gf)
3/4 to 1 tsp salt or to taste
1 tsp each of garlic powder and onion powder
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) each of smoked paprika, chili powder/cayenne
a very generous dash of black pepper
2 tsp oil optional

Mango Sriracha Glaze
1 cup (340 g) mango jam or preserves or use orange marmalade or grape jelly for variations
1/4 cup (60 ml) Sriracha sauce or to taste ?
1 Tbsp or more hot sauce or to taste I used Frank’s red hot
1/4 cup (62 ml) Orange juice or apple juice more juice if you like a thinner glaze
a generous pinch of garlic powder
1/4 tsp (0.25 tsp) ginger powder

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F / 230ºc. Chop the cauliflower into 1.5-2 inch pieces. Mix everything under batter in a bowl until smooth and thick enough batter that can coat the cauliflower pieces well.(add more flour if needed). Dip cauliflower in the batter and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Line the sheet with parchment or grease very well. Bake for 20 minutes.

Glaze
In a pan, mix all the ingredients under glaze and heat on medium. Taste and adjust spice, sweet and tang if needed(add sugar or vinegar for extra sweet or tang). You can also use fresh or frozen ripe mango puree + maple/sugar instead of preserves(as suggested by some readers who made these already).

Once the glaze is hot, taste and adjust spice + sweet. add the baked cauliflower to it. Toss well to coat carefully and let the glaze come to a boil. 1-2 minutes. You can use a large pan that can fit all the florets or do 2 batches. do not toss/move the florets too much. Remove from pan and Serve hot as is, or with rice/grains or with any creamy cool dips like vegan ranch. Alternatively, bring the sauce ingredients to a boil and pour over the baked cauliflower, mix to coat and serve.

Notes
Variations: Use grape jelly or Orange preserves. Add a 1/4 cup ketchup to the glaze.Use Barbecue sauce or sweet and sour sauce.To make buffalo wings, mix in enough hot sauce with melted vegan butter or oil (2:1 ratio) and toss the baked cauliflower in it, bake for a few minutes and seve.

Spicy Baked Cauliflower (or Potato Wedges)

For the batter:
2 to 3 Tbsp (2 to 3 tbsp) hot sauce
1 Tbsp evoo
1/2 to 3/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 to 1 tsp cayenne/ red chili powder
1.5 tsp garlic powder
1.5 tsp onion powder
1.5 to 2 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin powder
3/4 tsp (0.75 tsp) salt
3 Tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot starch
1/3 cup (41.67 g) flour
1/2 cup (113 ml) coconut milk canned, preferably full fat
1/4 cup (62.5 ml) water
3.5 to 4 cups (1160 to 1300 g) cauliflower florets

Breadcrumb coating:
3/4 cup (81 g) bread crumbs
2 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) cayenne
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) onion powder
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) garlic
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) paprika
1/4 tsp (0.25 tsp) salt

In a bowl, mix everything except cauliflower for the batter. if the batter is too thin, add more flour or starch.

In another shallow bowl, mix everything under breadcrumb coating.

Dip cauliflower in the batter, then coat in breadcrumbs and place on parchment lined sheet.(use gloves or a fork. the batter is spicy)

Drizzle any remaining batter on the cauliflower. Spray oil.

Bake at pre-heated 425 degrees F / 220ºc for 25 minutes or until a toothpick goes through the cauliflower easily. Serve warm with ranch dressing.

Golden Turmeric Roasted Cauliflower

1 medium head of cauliflower, chopped into small florets
3 tsp oil
1 tsp lemon juice or lime juice
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala or use curry powder of choice
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp cayenne or use 1 tsp sweet paprika + pinches of cayenne to taste
a good dash of black pepper
pinches of cinnamon and clove powder, optional
1.5 to 2 tbsp panko breadcrumbs
raita, chutney or lemon to serve

Slice the cauliflower into florets and add to a large bowl. Drizzle oil and lemon juice. Mix and rub the oil and lemon juice into the florets.

Mix the spices and breadcrumbs in a bowl. Sprinkle all over the cauliflower and toss well to coat.
Spread on parchment lined baking sheet or large dish and spray oil on the florets.

Bake at 425 degrees F (220 deg C) for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 400 degrees F. Turn the sheet around or move the cauliflower around a bit and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve with raita.

Nashville Cauliflower Wings

1 medium head of cauliflower chopped into florets

Batter:
1/3 cup (78.67 ml) almond or soy milk
1 tsp hot sauce
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) garlic powder
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) onion powder
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) salt
1/4 cup (31.25 g) flour (all purpose, or use rice flour for gluten-free)
3 tbsp starch (I use cornstarch, arrowroot or potato starch works too)
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) baking powder
1 tsp oil

Nashville style hot chicken sauce:
1 tbsp oil or melted butter
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) cayenne , use 1/4 tsp for less heat
1 tsp black pepper , use 1//2 tsp for less heat
1 tsp sugar or maple syrup
1 tsp sweet paprika , use more if omitting cayenne
2 tbsp hot sauce
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) garlic powder
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) poultry seasoning ( or use sage + onion powder)
1 tbsp vinegar
1 tbsp water

Chop the cauliflower and set aside. Line a baking dish with parchment. Preheat the oven to 425 deg F ( 220 C).

Make the batter by whisking all the ingredients under batter. The batter will start to thicken after half a minute, so work quickly.

Add cauliflower florets and toss well to coat. It will take a minute for the thick batter to coat the florets well. Some uncoated cauliflower edges are ok. Drop on parchment lined baking dish. Spray oil on top. (You can also sprinkle 2-3 tbsp breadcrumbs on the florets in the dish for extra crispyness).
Bake at 425 deg F for 25 mins (35 mins if serving the bites with hot sauce on the side) . In the meantime, make the nashville hot sauce mixture in large bowl. You can double this sauce easily for larger cauliflower.

Remove the dish from the oven and cool for 5 mins. Add the baked cauliflower to the sauce bowl and gently toss to coat.

Drop back into the baking dish and bake for 15 mins or longer at 400 deg F. Serve with cooling dips such as vegan ranch and some pickles.

Notes

Cajun Roasted Cauliflower with Chimichurri

Cajun Cauliflower:
1 small head of cauliflower, sliced into 1/2 inch thick slices or chopped into medium size florets
2 tbsp cajun spice blend (2 tsp sweet paprika, 1/3 tsp cayenne, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp oregano, 1.5 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp thyme, 1/2 tsp onion powder, dash of pepper flakes
1/2 to 3/4 tsp salt (if using store bought cajun blend, it might already be salted, so you will need only 1/4 tsp)
2 tsp oil
1 tsp lemon juice

Chimichurri sauce:
1 cup (60 g) packed parsley or one bunch parsley leaves and tender stems, chopped
1/4 cup (0.25 g) basil packed or use cilantro
6 cloves (6 cloves ) of raw garlic more the merrier
2 tbsp (2 tbsp ) extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1 lime
1 tsp (1 tsp ) vinegar apple cider or balsamic or red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp (0.25 tsp ) salt
1/4 tsp (0.25 tsp ) black pepper
2 tbsp (2 tbsp ) or more avocado for creamyness optional

Slice the cauliflower or chop into florets. Blend the chimichurri sauce with a few tbsp of water and set aside. Line a baking dish with parchment. Preheat the oven to 425 deg F ( 220 C )
Rub oil and lemon juice all over the slices or florets.

Sprinkle the cajun spice + salt on both sides of the slices and rub lightly. Then sprinkle more on the open side. (If using florets, sprinkle spice + salt, then toss well to coat). For Crispyness, mix 2 tbsp breadcrumbs in the spice mix and salt and then sprinkle all over.

Spray oil lightly on the spiced cauliflower to seal the spices in, Bake at 425 deg F for 20 to 25 mins. Broil for a minute to sear if needed.

Cauliflower tends to soften depending on the moisture content after cooking. So serve immediately. Sprinkle some more spice if needed. Cajun can be hot, so add another cooling dressing of choice if needed.

Serve with a side salad of cherry tomatoes/tomatoes, onion, chickpeas/beans, salt, pepper and chimichurri/lemon with these.

Baked Aloo Gobi

1 small head of cauliflower , 2 heaping cups
2 medium potatoes (yukon gold or white), about 2 cups cubed

Spicing:
1 tsp turmeric , divided
1 tsp ground cumin (1/2 tsp if you dont like cumin)
1 tsp ground coriander , optional, but nice
1/3 tsp (0.33 tsp) cayenne or paprika
1/2 tsp (0.5 tsp) garam masala or curry powder or berbere(1/2 to 1 tsp to preference), or use more of ground cumin and coriander
3/4 tsp (0.75 tsp) salt
1 tbsp minced ginger , (1 inch ginger minced)
1 tbsp minced garlic or 1 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp water
1 tsp oil
cilantro and lemon juice for garnish

Other flavor additions:
1/2 tsp amchur(dry mango powder)
1/2 tsp dried fenugreek leaves(kasoori methi)
a good pinch of asafetida (hing)

Chop the cauliflower into small florets and put in a large bowl.

Chop the potatoes into small cubes (less than 1/2 inch) and add to the bowl.

In a small bowl. Mix the 1/2 tsp turmeric and the rest of the ingredients under spicing until well combined. Add the spice mixture to the large bowl and toss to coat.

Alternatively, Add the minced ginger, garlic, oil to the bowl and toss well. Combine the turmeric, cumin, coriander, garam masala, cayenne, salt in a small bowl, mix well. Sprinkle over the cauliflower, potatoes and toss well.

Let the cauliflower and potatoes sit for a minute.

Sprinkle some more turmeric and mix lightly (optional).

Spread the veggies in a stoneware or ceramic baking dish. Spray oil. See Tips above on how to spread the veggies and pan size to choose.

Bake at 400 deg F (204 C) for 20 mins, then cover with parchment and bake for another 15 mins or until tender to preference. Taste carefully and adjust salt and spice and mix in. garnish with cilantro and some lemon juice.

Variations: Add 1 hot green chili, finely chopped with the ginger and garlic.

Change up the spices, use panch phoron blend instead of garam masala for achari aloo gobi.

Add thawed peas in the last 10 minutes of baking for Aloo Gobi Matar.

Add 1 to 1.5 cups cooked chickpeas to amp up the protein. Increase the spices and salt to preference to accommodate the added chickpea volume.

Add 1/2 tsp toasted cumin seeds instead of ground cumin

Oilfree: Omit the oil. Cover the Veggies half way through(about 5 mins longer).

Aloo Gobi

2 medium russet potatoes, cut into 2″-long sticks
1 medium head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
5 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tsp. cumin seeds
½ tsp. ground turmeric
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. thinly sliced ginger
Pinch of asafetida (optional, but really great)
Pinch of red chili powder
1 tsp. (or more) kosher salt
1 Tbsp. (or more) fresh lime juice
1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves with tender stems

Preheat oven to 400°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Toss potatoes and cauliflower with 3 Tbsp. oil on prepared sheet. Spread in an even layer and roast, tossing once halfway through, until cauliflower and potatoes are browned and slightly crisped, about 30 minutes. Let cool.

Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high until it begins to shimmer. Add cumin and cook, stirring frequently, until they turn a medium shade of brown, about 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium and swirl in turmeric. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until translucent, 4–6 minutes. Add ginger, asafetida (if using), and chili powder and cook, stirring, until heated through and well combined, about 1 minute longer.

Stir in roasted potatoes and cauliflower, including any charred bits from the foil, and gently mix (don’t overmix, or the cauliflower will fall apart). Add salt and cook, tossing occasionally, until potatoes and cauliflower are tender (but not soggy!), 5–6 minutes. Remove from heat and add lime juice. Taste and add more lime juice or salt, if needed.

Transfer potatoes and cauliflower to a platter. Top with cilantro.

Barbecue Cauliflower Salad Bowl

For the BBQ Cauliflower:
1 medium cauliflower head chopped into florets
2 tsp oil
1 tsp paprika half smoked, half sweet
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup (120 ml) or more bbq sauce
2 tsp or more hot sauce

For the Salad:
1 small head of iceberg lettuce chopped
1 apple peeled, and chopped small or sliced thin
1/3 cup (90 g) chopped pecans or use toasted sunflower seeds/pumpkin seeds for nut free
1/4 cup (60 ml) vegan ranch dressing
1/3 cup (100 g) thinly sliced carrots
Chives for garnish

Chop your cauliflower, and set aside.

In a bowl, mix all your dry spices, and set aside.

Add the oil to the cauliflower, toss well, and rub in so that all the florets are coated well.

Add in the spice mixture and toss well to coat.

Transfer this to a greased or parchment lined baking dish.

Bake at 400 degrees F ( C) for 17-18 minutes, then remove from the oven.

Let the cauliflower cool for a few minutes, then drizzle the bbq sauce and hot sauce, and mix well. If you’d like more bbq sauce coating the cauliflower, add some more, and toss within the baking dish, spread the cauliflower out again, and bake again at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes, or until the cauliflower is cooked to preference.

Meanwhile, prep your salad by chopping up the lettuce, apples, and carrots. Add them to a bowl, and mix well.

Top the bowl with your baked cauliflower, and a generous drizzle of ranch, and some garnishes like chives or black pepper, and serve!

Khichdi

1/2 cup (92.5 g) long grain white basmati rice
1/2 cup (96 g) quick cooking lentils such as split Red lentils (masoor dal) or (petite yellow lentils) Mung Dal or both
1 tsp oil
1/3 tsp cumin seeds or 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 onion finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1 inch (7 g) ginger finely chopped
1 green Chili, chopped serrano or birds eye, or use half a jalapeño
1 bay leaf or 6 curry leaves , optional
1 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp garam masala , optional
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp cayenne optional
1 tomato chopped
1 to 2 cups chopped vegetables
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups (473.18 ml) water 2.5 for saucier

Wash the lentils and rice then soak in hot water for 15 minutes.

Heat the Instant Pot on saute. Add oil and let it heat up. Add cumin or mustard seeds and cook for half a minute.

Add the onion, chile, garlic, ginger and a pinch of salt (and bay leaves or curry leaves) and cook for 2 mins.

Add ginger and spices and mix in.

Add tomato and cook for 3 mins. Mash the larger pieces. Add 2 tbsp water to deglaze mid way.
Drain and add the lentils and rice. Add water, salt, veggies and mix well to pick up any stuck bits.
Close the lid and pressure cook one of the following times. Low pressure for 3 mins for pictured version. High pressure for 3 to 6 minutes for a porridge and if using mung dal. Once the cooking cycle is done, quick release the pressure after 5 mins.

Fold in a few tbsp chopped cilantro and lemon juice to taste and fluff. Taste and adjust salt and flavor.

Store refrigerated for upto 3 days. For brown rice kitchari, try this.

Notes:
To make it in a saucepan: follow steps 1 to 5 in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the lentils and rice and 3 cups water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low-medium and continue to cook for 15-20 minutes or until desired consistency. You can add any blend of veggies! Think carrots, zucchini, cauliflower, and spinach. Use any blend you like.

Make sure not to burn the spices or your kitchari will be bitter.

White basmati rice can be substituted for other quick cooking whole grains such as quinoa, and amaranth.

Feel free to play around with the spices and vegetables, according to what you enjoy and what’s in season.

Navratan Pulao

1 1/2 cups basmati rice
2 tbsp vegetable oil
4 green cardamoms
4 cloves
1-inch stick cinnamon
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 bay leaves
2 medium potatoes (cut into a fine dice)
2 medium carrots (cut into a fine dice)
2 cups green beans (chopped into small bits)
1/2 small head cauliflower (separated into small florets)
1 cup green peas (frozen)
16 oz baked tofu (use my recipe linked here or use storebought)
1/2 tsp saffron strands
1/2 cup nondairy milk (I use almond)
1/4 cup raw cashews
2 tbsp sliced almonds
2 tbsp golden raisins

Bring a large pot of water to boil, lightly salt it, then add the rice and cook until the rice grains are almost tender but not fully cooked. Drain and set aside.

Mix the saffron with the nondairy milk and set aside.

Heat 1 1/2 tbsp oil. Add the cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf and cumin seeds. Stir-fry until the spices release their fragrance and begin to turn color.

Add the potatoes, saute for 2-3 minutes, then add the carrots and saute for another 2-3 minutes. Add the cauliflower and green beans and saute for a couple of minutes. Add green peas, then add some salt, cover the pot and let the veggies cook over a medium-low flame for about five minutes. Stir a couple of times to ensure they do not stick. You don’t want the veggies to brown.

When the potatoes are almost cooked and the cauliflower is al dente, mix in the rice, tofu cubes and the saffron in milk. Cover and let the rice continue cooking over low heat for 10 more minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1/2 tbsp oil in a small saucepan. Add the cashews and raisins to it, and finally the blanched, sliced almonds. Cook until the nuts are a light gold, then pour over the rice and mix.

Serve hot.

NOTES
To make this recipe soy-free, leave out the tofu.

To make this recipe nut-free, leave out the nuts. You can use apricots or another dry fruit along with the raisins. Also use a nondairy milk that’s nut-free.

Vegetable Tehri

1 1/2 cups basmati rice (covered in water and soaked for at least 30 minutes. Drain before using)
1 tsp vegetable oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
4 cloves
4 green cardamom pods (whole)
1 bay leaf
2-inch stick cinnamon
2 tsp fennel seeds (saunf)
1 large onion (thinly sliced)
1 green chili pepper (like japeno or serrano. Leave whole with just a slit down the middle, or, for less heat, split into half, deseed, and then use. You can fish out the peppers before serving)
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 medium tomatoes (pureed. Or use 1 cup canned tomato puree)
3 medium potatoes (cut in a 1-inch dice)
1 large carrot (cut into chunky 1 1/2 inch slivers)
1/2 head cauliflower (separated into chunky but bite-sized florets)
1 cup green peas (I used frozen, but fresh work too)
2 1/2 cups vegetable stock (or water)
Salt to taste

Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot. Add the cumin first, then the cloves, cardamom, bay leaf and cinnamon. Stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds, then add in the fennel seeds and stir quickly.
Add the onions and saute until they are soft but not brown. You can add a little salt to help this process go faster. Stir in the ginger garlic paste, green chili peppers and turmeric and saute another minute over low heat so the ginger and garlic don’t stick to the bottom.

Add the potatoes to the pot along with the carrots. Add a cup of the water or vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Cover the pot and let the potatoes and carrots cook about five minutes or until fairly tender but not quite done.

Add the cauliflower and tomato puree and continue cooking the veggies for a couple more minutes. Add the green peas and stir them in.

Add the remaining water or stock, followed by the drained rice, mix everything well and bring it all back to a boil. Once it looks like the rice has absorbed most of the water, give it all a good stir, cover with a tight-fitting lid, turn the heat to low, and set the timer for 15 minutes.

Avoid peeking while the rice is cooking, and let it stand, undisturbed, for 10 minutes after cooking. After 10 minutes, open the lid and fluff the grains of rice with a fork before serving.

Coconut Curry

1 tsp vegetable oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 medium onion (thinly sliced)
3 medium tomatoes (finely chopped)
1/2 to 1 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 medium potatoes (boiled and diced)
14 oz coconut milk (canned or freshly made are both fine)
Salt to taste
2 tbsp cilantro (or scallions, for garnish)

Heat the oil. Add cumin seeds and as they start to darken, add the onions and a pinch of salt. Saute for a couple of minutes until the onions start to soften.

Add the tomatoes, cayenne and turmeric and continue to saute for a few more minutes until the onions are soft and pulpy.

Add the potatoes along with half the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Let the curry cook another minute for the flavors to meld, then turn the heat to low and add the remaining coconut milk. Check for salt. If the curry is too thick for your liking, you can add some water or vegetable stock to thin it out. Turn off the heat as soon as the curry has warmed through but before it returns to a boil.

Garnish, if you like, with cilantro. I love this curry with the carrot rice and a garnish of scallions.

Masala Bhath

2 cups basmati rice (washed under running water or in several changes of water)
1 tbsp coconut oil
5 pods green cardamom (crushed slightly but left whole)
5 cloves
2 bay leaves
1 large potato (cut into 1/2-inch dice)
1 large carrot (cut into 1/2-inch dice)
1/2 small head cauliflower (separated into small florets)
1 medium zucchini (cut into 1-inch strips)
1 tbsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cayenne (optional –the goda masala has some heat)
2 tbsp goda masala (you can substitute with garam masala; see my recipe tips above for details on how to do that)
1 heaping tbsp coconut sugar (or jaggery, or regular sugar. Piloncillo, if you have some, is a fine replacement for jaggery)
1/4 cup coconut (grated. I don’t mean the dry shredded coconut you use for baking, but either freshly grated coconut, or grated coconut available in frozen packets. The coconut shreds have to be juicy, not dry)
1/4 cup cilantro (minced)
Salt to taste

Heat the oil. Add the cardamom, cloves and bay leaves and saute until the bay leaves start to change color and become lightly golden.

Add the potatoes and carrots and saute, stirring frequently, until the potatoes have a light brown crust.

Add the cauliflower and zucchini and continue sauteeing another couple of minutes.

Add the powdered spices–turmeric, coriander powder, cumin and goda masala–and saute for a minute to coat the spices with the oil and toast them.

Add the washed rice and stir until the rice begins to turn opaque.

Add 4 cups water to the rice, and add enough salt to make the water a bit saltier than you’d like your final dish to be.

Stir well, bring to a boil, then cover the rice with a tight-fitting lid. Let the rice cook over medium heat for five minutes, then lower the heat and continue cooking for 10 more minutes, never opening the lid once during cooking.

Turn off the heat and let the rice stand another 10 minutes. Open and sprinkle on the coconut and cilantro.

Serve hot or warm.

Quinoa Pilaf with Lemons, Shallots, and Herbs

1–2 shallots ( or 1/4 of an onion) – very thinly sliced – see notes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed, drained ( rinsing removes bitterness)
2 1/4 cups water
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon granulated garlic (or use 1–2 minced garlic cloves with the shallot)
1 teaspoon dried oregano ( or italian seasoning, or herbs de Provence, or similar)

Garnish:

lemon zest from one small lemon,
sprinkling of fresh herbs ( italian parsley, dill, basil, cilantro)
2 tablespoons slivered almonds ( optional- other nuts & seeds are ok, or just leave off)
sautéed shallot ( see notes) or crispy shallots
drizzle of good olive oil– optional but good.

In a medium pot, over medium heat, sauté the shallot in the oil, until golden and fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. If you want, set half aside for the garnish. Add rinsed/drained quinoa, water, salt, cumin, granulated garlic and dried herbs, and give a good stir. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover well, and cook for 15 minutes. Check to see that quinoa has soaked up all the water. If not, continue cooking 2-5 more minutes. If it has, turn heat off and let it sit covered 5-10 more minutes.

Fluff with a fork, place in a serving bowl and toss gently with lemon zest, sprinkle with fresh herbs and, sauted shallots and optional nuts. Don’t over mix.

For extra richness a drizzle of good quality olive oil is really nice touch.

notes

When serving this as a side dish all on its own, I like to use two sautéed shallots, half for cooking with the quinoa, and the other half for sprinkling over the top as a garnish. If batch cooking for the week, you may not need the garnish.
Rinsing the quinoa is imperative. It really does help remove the bitterness.
If making a smaller batch or bigger batch, my general ratio of water to quinoa = 1 cup quinoa to 1.5 cups water.

Play around with this and embellish it as you please.

A easy way to turn this quinoa into a meal….is to serve it with simple roasted veggies and tahini sauce. Or these roasted parsnips! Add this make-ahead kale salad if you like. It really doesn’t have to be complicated! Simple real food -the best kinds of meals!

Perfect for meal prepping and batch cooking!

Chicken Soup (with Slow Cooker and Pressure Cooker Variations)

1–2 tablespoons olive oil
one large onion, diced (or sub 2 fat shallots, or two leeks)
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, chopped
4–8 garlic cloves, rough chopped (I like 8)
4 cups chicken broth or stock
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon white pepper (or use regular)
1 1/2 lbs chicken thighs, boneless, skinless ( or use breasts- if very large, cut in half)
——–
lemon juice to taste
pinch chili flakes
scallions, cilantro or Italian parsley
drizzle of toasted sesame oil (optional, tasty)

Optional: 2-3 cups of cooked grain or starch of your choice like… Quinoa, rice or soba noodles, pasta, rice, 1 can whitebeans.

STOVE TOP INSTRUCTIONS:

Heat oil in a big pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and ginger and saute until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Lower heat to med- low and continue sauteeing until golden, 3-4 more minutes.

Add the chicken stock, water, salt, white pepper, bay leaves and skinless chicken. Bring to a boil. Cover, and lower heat so it’s gently simmering, covered for 20 mintues. If using breasts, check at 15.

Test a piece of chicken for doneness by pulling meat apart with two forks. It should come apart easily and look opaque. If done, shred the rest of the chicken, then return to the pot and simmer gently for 5 more minutes.

Squeeze with lemon, taste and adjust broth. You can add more salt of needed, or if too salty for your taste, water down with a little water. I prefer ours salty, lemony and unctuous, especially if adding a starch (like rice, noodles or beans) which will temper the salt quite a bit. Up to you. If the soup tastes bland, it needs salt.

Ladle it over cooked rice or noodles or just on it’s own.

Garnish with scallions or cilantro (or both) a drizzle of sesame oil if you like and chili flakes (or chili paste or sriracha). Or you could add some cooked or leftover rice or quinoa. You could add white beans or cooked pasta.

Or if going low-carb- leave all the starch and grains out keep it simple and keto-friendly. Cauliflower rice would also work well here too!

Notes:

Soup will keep 4 days in the fridge, or freeze.

You could ladle it over a mound of rice noodles, then finish with sesame oil, sesame seeds, scallions and cilantro

Feel free to add 1/2 cup rice or quinoa to simmering soup. Or add a can of whitebeans. You can also add pasta ( about 4 ounces) but I prefer to cook pasta and rice noodles separate and ladel the soup overtop cooked noodles. Up to you. Feel free to toss in veggies, kale, spinach, etc.

Instant Pot: Set Instant pot to “saute” function and heat the oil. Add onion, garlic and ginger and saute 3-4 minutes until fragrant. Add broth, water, salt, pepper, bay, white pepper and chicken thighs, give a stir. Pressure cook on high for 12 minutes. (If using breasts, pressure cook 8-10 minutes depending on size). Manually release. Shred chicken with two forks. Season with lemon juice. Taste, adust salt. Follow the rest of the instuctions above.

For a slow cooker version, cook as stated above then cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours, or on High for 3 hours.

Roasted Cauliflower Gratin

2 medium cauliflower heads (about 10 cups, 20 ounces florets)
2 tablespoons olive oil for drizzling
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
——–
2 Tablespoon olive oil or butter
1 onion, diced or sub 2 fat shallots)
6–8 garlic cloves, rough chopped
2 tablespoons fresh chopped sage (or 2 teaspoons dry sage, or sub rosemary or thyme)

Bechamel Sauce:

2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour (or gf flour)
2 cups milk, hot
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg (fresh grated is nice)
1/4 cup grated gruyere cheese- (or mozzarella -plus 3 Tablespoons for the top)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan or pecorino

Optional Additions:

1/4 cup crispy bacon bits, or crispy pancetta
1/4 cup vegan “bacon bits”
bread crumb topping (see notes)

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Roast the Cauliflower: Cut cauliflower into bite size pieces, toss with olive oil (just enough to lightly coat) salt and pepper and place on one (or two) parchment-lined sheet pans ( in a single layer) and bake until tender and golden, about 20-25 minutes.

Saute the onions: In an extra large skillet saute the onion over med- high heat in olive oil until tender and fragrant, stirring often, about 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and sage and lower heat to medium and sauté 3-4 minutes, until fragrant, season with salt and pepper. Take your time here and make sure onion and garlic are golden and tender. Set aside.

Make the Bechamel Sauce: In a small pot, melt butter over medium heat. Stir until butter just begins to become golden and becomes nutty and fragrant. Add flour. Stir and cook flour for at least 1 minute. Whisk in 1/2 C hot milk making sure to whisk all the flour from the corners and sides of the pot. Add another 1/2 C milk, whisking well. Add the final cup of milk, nutmeg, salt and pepper and whisk constantly until mixture thickens and just comes to a simmer. Turn heat to low and whisk in cheese and set aside.

Assemble: Use a greased, oven-proof 10 inch cast iron skillet, 8×11 inch baking dish or greased individual ramekins. Toss the roasted cauliflower with the Bechamel sauce and onions/garlic/ sage mixture. Taste for salt and pepper, adjusting to your liking.

Top with optional bread crumbs (see notes), optional crispy bacon or pancetta (or vegan bacon bits) a few sage leaves or a little more cheese. You could refrigerate this overnight at this point if making ahead (perhaps not in the cast iron). If refrigerating, be sure to bring to room temp before baking.

Lower heat to 375 F and bake uncovered in the oven, until golden and bubbly, about 20-25 minutes.

Mexican Pinto Beans

1 lb dry pinto beans (2 1/2 cups dry), soaked 6-12 hours, then drained
1 teaspoon salt
——-
1–2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, rough chopped
1 cinnamon stick (optional)
1 dry Mexican Guajillo Chile (optional, see notes), seeds removed, cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon coriander
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 bay leaves (optional)
2 quarts water
1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vinegar
1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from canned chipotles)

Place pinto beans in a med bowl, and cover with 2-3 inches of water. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt and let soak overnight – or for a minimum of 6 hours. Drain.

After soaking: In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat and saute the onion and garlic until tender and fragrant, 4-5 minutes. Add the dried chili, cinnamon stick and all the spices. Saute one minute to toast the spices. Add the water, tomato paste and DRAINED beans. Stir in the 1/2 salt and bring to a rapid boil.

Lower heat to maintain a gentle simmer (on low or medium low) and simmer uncovered for 45-60 minutes, until beans are tender.

Stir in the tablespoon of Chipotle Adobo Sauce and the vinegar.

Taste, adjusting salt if needed.

Notes:
Feel free to substite 1-2 canned chipotle peppers (chopped) instead of the dried Mexican chili. Or leave out both for a milder version. Or experiment with other dried Mexican chilies taking not of heat level. One Guajillo chili makes this MEDIUM SPICY.

Using the The Adobo sauce from the Canned Chipotle Peppers really elevates and adds a lovely smokiness to the whole dish. Freeze the leftover chipotle chilies (individually) for later use!
You could also use a little smoked paprika for the smoky flavor without the spiciness.

INSTANT POT: Cook according to above, using the saute function for sauteeing. Reduce water to 4 cups. Pressure cook the soaked pinto beans on high for 25 minutes, naturally release. If you’d like to reduce liquid further, cook on saute function for a few minutes until it thickens up.

HAM HOCK: Feel free to add a smoked ham hock to the top of the simmering beans. After it’s tender, shred the meat and stir into the beans.