Category Archives: Main Course

Fraser’s Butter Chicken

Based on a recipe from Vice chef Matty Matheson.

  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
    2 birds eye chiles, seeded and minced
    2 long red chiles, seeded and minced
  • 2 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 3 Tbsp ginger, peeled
  • 1/2 cup ghee
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala
  • 2 tablespoons ground coriander
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 3 1/2 cups  tomato puree (crushed tomatoes)
  • 1 tablespoon dried Fenugreek leaves
  • Protein of choice (for example: 4 boneless and skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks (about 1 kg); a block of paneer or tofu cut into chunks; cooked chickpeas, etc
  • Vegetables (for example: cauliflower floretes; frozen green peas; cubed potatoes, etc)
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • handful of fresh cilantro

1. Place the olive oil, garlic, chilies, onion, and ginger in a blender or food processor and purée until smooth.

2. Heat ghee in a large dutch oven over medium-high. Add the onion purée and cook until the mixture darkens slightly and softens, about 15 minutes.

3. Add the tomato paste, turmeric, chili powder, garam masala, coriander, and cumin and cook for 5 minutes, or until dark and sticky.

4. Add in 1 1/2 cups water. Using a wooden spoon, scrape up any browned bits at the bottom of the pan.

 

5. Stir in the tomato puree and fenugreek leaves and increase the heat to high. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 1 hour.

6. Add your protein and vegetables, and simmer until  cooked, about 15 minutes more.

7. Add the cream and butter and stir to combine. Season with salt and serve garnished with fresh cilantro

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Breakfast Bake with Sausage and Peppers

Serves 4

  • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • red or yellow onion, chopped
  • a couple of cloves of garlic, chopped
  • big drizzle of olive oil
  • Spike Seasoning to taste (or use any all-purpose seasoning mix that you like the flavor of)
  • fresh-ground black pepper to taste

 

  • 12 links (about 10 oz.) turkey breakfast sausage links

 

  • 1/2 cup Mozzarella, grated

Preheat oven to 450F

Spray a medium-sized baking dish with non-stick spray.

Put veggies into the baking dish, toss with ~1 teaspoon olive oil, sprinkle with seasoning and fresh-ground black pepper, and put the dish in the oven to bake for 20 minutes.

While the veggies cook, heat olive oil in a non-stick pan, add the sausages and cook over medium-high heat until they’re nicely browned on all sides, about 10-12 minutes.

Remove to cutting board, line them up, and cut sausages into bite-sized pieces (alternatively, cut up the sausages beforehand and saute the pieces).

When the peppers have cooked for 20 minutes, stir in the cooked sausages and bake for 5 minutes more.

Remove from oven, turn oven to BROIL, sprinkle the grated Mozzarella over the top and return dish to oven to broil for a couple of minutes, or until the cheese is nicely melted and starting to brown. Serve hot.

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Filed under Breakfast, dinner, food, Main Course, Protein, Vegetables, whole food

Roasted Veggies for Grains or Pasta

Roasted vegetables on whole wheat pasta

Roasted vegetables on whole wheat pasta

serves 3, doubles easily but needs larger pans

Preheat oven to 425F, with both racks in the centre of the oven.

In a baking pan or sheet, toss together and set aside**:

  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes (about 4 cups)
  • a good pinch of salt
  • a couple of tablespoons of olive oil

In a large bowl, toss together with hands**:

  • •eggplant, about 225g or 1/2lb, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • •2 medium zucchini, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • •1 red bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • •1 or 2 cooking onions, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • •3 to 4 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
  • •a generous splash of olive oil (2 to 4 Tbsp)
  • •balsamic vinegar (a couple of Tbsp)
  • •1/4 tsp salt
  • •freshly ground black pepper (about 20 grinds)
  • •a large pinch of dried chilli flakes

Spread out this mixture on a very large baking sheet, in one layer.

Place both pans into the preheated oven, with the tomatoes on the bottom rack, and the vegetables on the top rack.  Bake for 20 minutes.

Remove pans from oven, and give each a stir, trying to flip the vegetables to brown the other side.

Put back in  oven for 10 minutes, or until golden, and the tomatoes are bursting and juicy.

* If you are serving over pasta, reserve about 1 cup of the cooking water.  First, toss the tomatoes and some cooking water together with the pasta, so that the tomatoes and their liquid coat the pasta. 

* If serving over grains, just toss the tomatoes and their juices with the grains.

Put the tomatoes and pasta or grains into a serving bowl and top with the contents of the vegetable pan.

Sprinkle on top, if you have it:

  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano, or 1 tsp dried**
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme, or 1/4 tsp dried**

Serve with freshly grated parmesan.

** If you are using dried herbs, toss them with the tomatoes and vegetables at the same time as the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

For an exact recipe, which I have adapted, go to Cookie & Kate.

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Filed under food, Main Course, Sauce, Vegetables, Vegetarian (lacto/ovo), whole food

Chickpea Vegetable Stew in the Instant Pot

My take on a recipe found on the Instant Pot web site.  It could just as easily be done on a stovetop!

Serve over top of whole wheat couscous.

Sauté in the Instant Pot:

        • 1 Tbsp butter (use olive oil if you want it to be vegan)
        • 1 large onion, diced (about 1.5 cups)
        • 1 large carrot, diced (about .5 to 1 cup)
        • 4 cups cauliflower florets
        • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
        • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
        • big handful of green beans, cut into bite-sized pieces
        • 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
        • 1 Tbsp fresh garlic, minced

When onion is translucent, add and sauté the spices until they are fragrant:

        • 1 Tbsp ground coriander
        • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
        • 1.5 tsp smoked paprika
        • 1/4 tsp Indian red chilli powder, or cayenne
        • 2 tsp turmeric
        • 2 tsp kosher salt

Turn off sauté and add to the Instant Pot:

        • 2 or 3 cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
        • 1 28oz can stewed tomatoes, drained and cut up with scissors
        • 1 can coconut milk, 13.5oz

Stir gently to mix.  Put the lid onto the Instant Pot, and select “Soup”, reducing the cook time to 10 minutes.  Do a quick release when the time is up. 

If desired, add a handful of:

  • cilantro, finely chopped

And stir. Taste and adjust for seasonings.

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Filed under dinner, food, Main Course, Protein, Vegetarian (lacto/ovo), whole food

Butter Chicken in the Instant Pot

In a blender puree together:

      • 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, UNdrained
      • 2 jalapeño peppers seeded and chopped
      • 2 TBSP fresh ginger root, peeled and chopped (or use the tube kind)

When smooth, blend in:

      • 3/4 cup Greek yogurt
      • 3/4 cup whipping cream
      • 2 tsp kosher salt

Turn the Instant Pot on to “Sauté” and add:

      • 1/2 cup butter, unsalted, or ghee

When the butter is hot, brown both sides of:

      • 12, or up to about 20 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Do this in batches so as not to crowd the pot.  When pieces are browned, put them into a bowl.

When all chicken has been browned, and removed from the Instant Pot, in the hot butter sauté until golden:

    • 1 cooking onion, finely chopped

To the golden onion, stir in:

      • 2 tsp ground cumin
      • 1 TBSP paprika

Stir for about 30 seconds, then pour in the mixture in the blender, along with the chicken & its accumulated juices. Stir very gently to combine. Cancel the “Sauté” command.

Put the lid on, and lock it into place.  Ensure that the vent is set to closed.

Select manual “HIGH” pressure, and 5 minutes cook time.

When timer beeps, turn the Instant Pot off, and let pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, use a quick pressure release to let out any remaining pressure; watch out for steam!

The fat will have floated to the top of the butter chicken. Skim off about 3 to 4 TBSP of the hot butter putting it into a small bowl.  Into the small bowl of hot butter, whisk in until very smooth:

      • 2 TBSP all purpose flour

Select “Sauté” again, then stir in:

      • 2 tsp garam masala
      • 2 tsp toasted cumin seeds, ground up (toast in dry frying pan and crush them before hand)
      • the butter and flour mixture that is in the small bowl

Bring to a boil, and cook for a few minutes to thicken.  Turn off Instant Pot and add:

  • 1/4 to 1/2 firmly packed minced fresh cilantro

Stir gently, and serve.

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Korean-BBQ-Inspired Beef Bowl

Serve on cooked brown rice; add any other veggies that appeal.

The Sauce:

  • 1⁄4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1⁄4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1⁄2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Whisk the above ingredients together in a small bowl, and set aside.

The Beef:

  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1⁄2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 medium-sized cooking onion, diced
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 3⁄4 cups frozen peas
  1. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion, and cook until softened.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute.
  3. Add ground beef and sauté, breaking it apart, until no pink remains. Drain off excess fat.
  4. Add the peas and the sauce, mix well, and cook until hot.
  5. Serve immediately, on top of cooked brown rice.

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Tuna Noodle Casserole

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil or butter
  • 2 celery stalks, diced small
  • 1 small cooking onion, diced
  • ½ jalapeno pepper, finely diced
  • 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 ¾ cup milk
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • ¾ cup grated sharp cheddar
  • 2 cups dry macaroni
  • 1 cup to 1 ½ cups frozen peas
  • 2 tins tuna, drained and flaked

 

Topping:

  • 2 Tbsp butter at room temperature
  • ¼ cup grated sharp cheddar
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs (or other crunchy crumbs)

 

Heat oven to 350F.  Butter an 8” x 8” glass baking dish, and bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

While making the sauce, cook macaroni according to package directions, drain, and set aside in its pot. Do not rinse!

Heat butter in medium sized saucepan, and add celery and onion.  Sauté, without browning, for about 5 minutes, or until soft.  Add jalapeno and cook for 3 more minutes.

Add the seasoning and flour to the vegetable mixture, stir and cook for about 1 minute.  Add milk, and stir till smooth. Bring to a gentle boil, and cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream and the mustard, then stir mixture into sauce. Stir in the ¾ cup cheese.

Add the peas and the tuna to the hot mixture.  Gently stir until combined.  Pour into the buttered pan, and even out with back of spoon.

Mix the topping ingredients together in a medium bowl (I use my fingers).  Sprinkle topping evenly over casserole.

Bake for about 30 minutes, until bubbling and browned.

 

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