Fresh Tomatillo Salsa

It all started with the “ugly fruit” stand at the grocery store. Tomatillos, garlic, a lime and a tomato in one bag. Red peppers in another. All of them slightly blighted, softening and calling for a second chance. 
I love this section of the store some days. 

My cupkeiki has some sort of fascination with Tomatillos. I think it’s the leafy  cover over them and that might  just be it. Regadless, she always ask’s to get them, and when we saw them bagged up and discounted, she was excited. 

So I chopped half a red pepper, added all the tomatillos, 6 cloves of the garlic, added half of the limes juice, all of the tomato and pulsed for a few seconds leaving plenty of large pieces. Then I stirred in some chopped cilantro, salt and crushed red pepper. 

It was hard to resist just devouring the whole bowl there at the counter. A lack of chips for dipping stopped me, though the spatula was convincing me to just keep taste testing. I promised the mixture I’d return later with chips- and maybe some chili lime chicken, black beans, sweet potato and yogurt. 

I can’t wait for dinner.

Hearty

          Today was a day of hearts for my                               kolohe cupkeiki! 

                Breakfast and dinner…

                      and even dessert

           What a hearty day its been. 

       

            Why not end the evening with

              Something hearty sounding…
                 ” I could live a million lives

             Experience a million adventures

              Meet and love a million people

      But none could ever win my heart

                A million times over like you”

                                                          ~Dusty

Paneer Love

This afternoon I prepared a Tikka Masala in the slow cooker. Just the tomatoes, onion, garlic and spices-heavy on the garam masala. I added a few sweet potatoes for fun. This evening when I got home, in the time it took the rice to cook I pan fried a small chicken breast cut in strips, and then pan fried paneer cheese. 

I’m just going to say that frying paneer and then eating it is like being in food heaven. It was amazing and added a much needed texture and flavor to the Tikka Masala. I served the Masala over rice then topped with the fried paneer, chicken, avocado and thick yogurt. It was so delicious and exciting! I can see myself going on a paneer binge in the very near future!! 

For the Tikka Masala:

In the slow cooker add:

2- 14.5oz cans fire roasted tomatoes

2 sweet potatoes, diced

6 cloves garlic, chopped

1 onion, diced

4 Tbs Garam Masala

2 tsp. Salt

2 tsp. Ground Ginger

4 tsp. Smoked Paprika

2 tsp. ChilI Powder

Refill 1 tomato can 2-3 times with water, added to the slow cooker

Cook on low 8 hours (or on high for 4 hours). Serve over rice, top with crispy chicken or tofu, pan fried Paneer, avocado and thick yogurt! 

Rajma Masala for Comfort

Sometimes you try something new, not knowing what to expect, praying it will work, and keeping you fingers crossed that the family will eat it and feel satisfied and maybe even excited. 
Last week I tried to make a Brazilian dish in the slow cooker. It went horribly wrong. My keiki wasn’t afraid to tell me it was bad either. I love/dislike that. 

The Rajma Masala recipe I used here came from the, Framed Recipes site: http://www.framedrecipes.com/slow-cooker-rajma-masala-bowl/.

 I had to make a few changes based on what I had at the last minute. Using the adzuki beans in place of Kidney beans was well worth te risk. Adzuki beans are much sweeter than Kidney beans, and with the addition of sweet potato I was pretty nervous it was going to be overly sweet. I wasn’t the only one who had that thought either. But it didn’t turn out sweet, thanks probably to the Chipotle peppers I used. Their smokey spicy flavor muted the sweetness. I was really happy with how it turned out. I served the curry over rice and added half an avocado, yogurt and chopped almonds to the top!  

Ingredients;

2 1/2 C. Cooked Adzuki Beans (or kidney beans as is traditional)

1 onion, diced

8 cloves garlic, minced

2 inch piece of ginger, chopped 

1 full cinnamon stick 

2 dried, mild to medium Chipotle peppers (mine were smoked which lender a nice flavor)

1 bay leaf

4 cloves

1 Tbs cumin seeds

1 tsp. Cayenne pepper, ground

2 tsp. Garam Masala 

2 Tbs. Smoked Paprika

2 tsp. Turmeric 

2 sweet potato, diced

1- 2 Tbs.Lime juice

Salt and pepper to taste

3-4 Cups water

Garnish: yogurt (Greek style), cilantro, avocado, almonds, lime wedhe’s, pan fried chicken

Directions:

Place all ingredients into slow cooker, cook on low for 8 hours. Before serving remove cinnamon stick and pulse an immersion blender through to break down beans and potato to thicken a little. Serve over rice and garnish!