Welcome to On Board in 20: a recipe series where we share wholesome, family-style meals you can prepare in about 20 minutes. The recipes always contain whole food ingredients and are intended to be brought to the table for family members to build and construct their individual plates as their senses guide them. Along the way, we bring you tips and tricks for speeding up prep and clean up for those busy weeknight meal times.
This month's edition of On Board in 20 is brought to you by Produce Made Simple.
In our house, curry is the new stir-fry. Years ago, when my husband and I were both working full-time jobs we concocted a plethora of stir-fries, random meats and vegetables usually tossed with a commercial, high fructose teriyaki sauce. It was our version of a 20-minute dinner. People say when you know better you do better, and we definitely do better now. We do curry. This month's On Board in 20 has us partnered with Produce Made Simple again with a spotlight on aromatics and potatoes.
As we move into the colder months, vegetables like onions, garlic and ginger are plentiful at the markets. They store so well over the winter months and form a beautiful base to a curry dish. Prepping and chopping the aromatics can be time consuming so we cut that activity right down with the use of the flat side of your knife, a spoon and a mini processor. For this curry, while your spices are toasting, two quick cuts into the onion to quarter it and the peel should slide off (here's a simple video with more onion prep and storage tips.). For the garlic, simply bash the clove, peel and all, with the flat side of your knife (be careful, I use a closed fist). The mashed garlic easily sheds its skins and into the processor it goes with the onion. Finally, a spoon is a really quick way to peel your ginger. If you have extra ginger, it stores beautifully in the freezer and grates really easy for the next time you need it.
This curry is vegetarian with the bulk of its sustenance coming from the cauliflower and potatoes. We used mini yellow potatoes — perfect for braising or mashing. (Alliteration will help you remember that if you are Roasting potatoes your best choice is Red or Russet. Here's a handy guide for choosing the right potato for your recipe ).
Like most On Board in 20 meals, the order of the steps is important. A rice cooker will let you set it and forget it, which is an appealing feature on a busy weeknight. We also utilize the kettle to help the potatoes get a head start and only requiring the stove to heat a small amount of water.
Don’t skip toasting the spices, it really makes a big difference. You can also really play around with different combinations — curry, turmeric, garam marsala, paprika, mustard seeds and coriander are all viable options. And a final note: if you want to amp up the protein in this meal sometimes we throw in a can of chick peas. Enjoy!
- 1-1/2 cups rice, uncooked
- 1 lb mini yellow potatoes
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 3 teaspoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon garam marsala
- 1 medium onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 small piece of ginger, about 1 inch
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup tomato puree
- 1 400ml can coconut milk
- 3 large tomatoes
- ¼ red onion
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 small bunch cilantro (about ½ cup)
- Optional: fresh pea shoots, lime and red chilies.
- Fill kettle with water and turn on.
- Start rice as per package instructions. Usually a 2:1 ratio of water to rice will work; reduce slightly for fluffier rice.
- Put two medium pots on the stove, one with a steamer basket (if you don't have a basket, this will work without it). Add about two inches of water to each pot and turn to high with the lid on.
- Prep potatoes. Rinse and cut in half (if they're really small you can leave whole but this may increase cooking time). Place them in the pot without the steam basket.
- Prep cauliflower. Remove outer leaves, roughly chop into bigger than bite size pieces. Place into the pot with the steamer basket.
- Add boiling kettle water to cover potatoes and put the lid back on. Add a small amount of water to cauliflower (about another inch) and also return lid.
- Prep curry: In a large skillet, melt coconut oil over medium high heat. Add curry powder, coriander and garam marsala. Reduce heat to medium and let spices toast. They should become fragrant, but be careful not to burn them. While the spices toast, blitz onion, garlic and ginger in a food processor. Add to curry and combine into a thick paste. Cook for 2 minutes and then add tomato paste, tomato puree and coconut milk. Stir to combine and add lid, leaving on medium heat.
- Prep tomato salad: cut tomatoes into wedges and use a mandolin to finely shave red onion. Toss both in a small bowl with oil and salt. Place into small piles on board (optionally on top of micro greens).
- Add cauliflower, drained potatoes and peas to curry mixture. Stir to combine and return lid, cooking for an additional few minutes.
- Assembly: Place a large shallow bowl or plate in the centre of the board. Plate the rice along the edges of the plate and then add the curry mixture to the middle. Top with fresh cilantro.
Looking for More 20-Minute Meal Ideas?
- Pork Tenderloin Sliders and Blue Cheese Slaw
- Blackened Steak and Waffle Potatoes
- Lamb Kofta with Arugula
Or check out our entire 20-Minute Meal gallery for more ideas!
Lisa Bolton is the creator, writer and photographer behind Food Well Said, her blog about bringing thoughtfully prepared, whole food recipes. She lives in the Lower Mainland of BC and you can reach her on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.