Thursday, February 7, 2013

A Blog Entirely New(ish)

Friends of the Ten Ingredient Project, this blog has flown. There's a new blog in town, dedicated to pictures and recipes of delectable whole-food meals fit for humans big and little.

Come visit Kid Can Eat! and have a happy, healthy day!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Fresh Ground Curry Powder

Reasons to make your own curry powder:

1) This stuff is obscenely fresh. No little foil seal on top of store-bought jars can compete with the bold and vibrant flavor of whole ground spices.

2) Spices have potent healing properties, and grinding your own in small batches ensures that the antioxidants and phytonutrients stay locked in the spices as long as possible.

3) If you're like me (nerdy), you'll jump at the chance to buy some new spices that you don't normally cook with (fenugreek, anyone?)

4) Spices are FREE when you're cooking ten ingredient meals!

5) It's a pretty nifty bit of know-how. If cooking with your own homemade curry powder doesn't impress a date, it's time to get a new date.

To make this curry powder, you'll need a standard coffee grinder à la Walmart and a small airtight jar. The recipe is modified slightly from this one; I cut back a little on the coriander.


Fresh Ground Curry Powder
Total Kitchen Time: 10 minutes. Makes enough for 8-10 curries.

4 tsp. coriander seeds
1 tsp. fenugreek seeds
2 tsp. turmeric powder (turmeric is a rhizome like ginger, so it's the one spice that doesn't work "whole" in a curry powder.)
1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
1/2 tsp. black mustard seeds
1.5 inches of cinnamon bark
5 cloves
1 bay leaf

Combine all spices except turmeric in grinder and grind until very fine. Transfer to airtight jar and stir in turmeric. Use in curries, as a popcorn seasoning, on baked sweet potato fries, etc. etc.!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Uncle Brett's Sweet Ginger Curry


My brother Brett flew in from Boston to meet his nephew last week and took my kitchen by storm! I always knew Brett was a dessert mastermind (this guy can fix a fondant like nobody's business) but I had no idea he had a flair for curries quite like this. Not to sound like a total noob, but Brett's curry tastes just like the kind you get at the Indian restaurant! The secret, he showed me, is patience with onions. Of course! Authentic Indian curries use onions to create that thick, flavorful sauce. Duh. Cooking them down to a stringy paste (tastier than it sounds--for at least 30 minutes) brings a practically unholy sweetness to the final dish. Loads of fresh garlic and ginger added at the end of cooking make this a potent healing stew.

Here I ladled Brett's curry over brown rice next to some steamed broccoli and a few tender deglet noor dates for a total ingredient count that leaves two to spare!

Uncle Brett's 5-Ingredient Sweet Ginger Curry
Total Kitchen Time: 45 minutes. Serves 2, with leftovers.

1 cup brown lentils
2 medium onions, sliced as thinly as possible
1 Tbls. extra virgin coconut oil
3 large cloves garlic, grated
fresh grated ginger root, equal in volume to grated garlic

Free Spice Blend
1-2 tsp good curry powder (home-ground curry powder recipe coming soon!)
dash cayenne pepper
salt to taste

Rinse and drain lentils and set to simmer covered with twice the water.

In a large saucepan, fry onions in coconut oil over medium heat for 30-60 minutes, until they turn to a stringy paste and begin to brown.

Are you keeping an eye on your lentils?

Add garlic, ginger and spices to onions and fry a few more minutes.

Add cooked lentils to the onion pot, along with a little bit of their liquid. Stir and heat a few minutes more to integrate flavors.

Serve plain or over brown rice.

Thanks Brett, for a great visit!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Balsamic Black Pepper Mushrooms

I've been really into mushrooms lately. I used to have some weird psychological issue with eating fungi, which I cannot be more thankful to have overcome. Not only are mushrooms rich in antioxidants and B vitamins, (even white buttons!) they're also just really freaking tasty.

So now that I've come to my senses, I look for excuses to eat piles of mushrooms in one sitting, main-course style. I've tweaked this recipe several times and I think it's perfect now, thanks to the addition of fresh parsley suggested in a similar recipe in Vegetarian Times.

Pouring the hot mushrooms over fresh raw spinach wilts some leaves while others remain crisp; the tangy/sweet balsamic flavor is all the dressing you'll need.

I enjoyed this meal with a juicy organic pear (ingredient #8) and a glass of white wine (#9) and I felt all French and fancy. You too can feel French and fancy! Enjoy.

7-Ingredient Balsamic Black Pepper Mushrooms
Total Kitchen Time: 20 minutes. Serves 1.

10 medium-large white button mushrooms, sliced to medium thickness
3 cloves garlic, sliced longways
1 Tbls. olive oil
splash balsamic vinegar
2 Tbls. fresh parsley, chopped finely
1/4 cup raw walnuts
2 cups fresh spinach

Free Spice Blend
LOTS of freshly ground black pepper
sea salt


Drizzle oil into pan over medium heat and fry garlic until translucent; about 1 minute.

Add mushrooms. Spread them evenly across the bottom of the pan and then DON'T TOUCH THEM for 10 minutes. This part is really hard (for me). Be sure the pan is hot enough to keep up with cooking off any liquid the mushrooms might release.

After ten minutes of heroic patience, stir gleefully, enjoying your beautifully browned shrooms. Add balsamic vinegar and cook 2 more minutes, or until no liquid remains.

Toss parsley into pan and remove from heat promptly. Grind salt and plenty of black pepper onto mushrooms and stir thoroughly.

Pour mushrooms over fresh spinach, sprinkle with walnuts and serve.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Five Minute Plate

The Five Minute Plate is back! Well, it's gone now. I mean, I ate it. And it was delicious.

This seven-ingredient meal included baby bok choy sauteed in olive oil with a squeeze of lemon juice, fresh strawberries, carrot sticks, and an egg fried in a bit of butter. I've mentioned before that I enjoy unprocessed fats without guilt, including saturated fats like butter and coconut oil.

Unrefined fats are especially important while breastfeeding because all mom's dietary fats go straight into her milk. Trans-fatty breast milk = horror show! Run, babies! Coconut oil, on the other hand, boosts the lauric acid content of the milk which translates to maximum infection-fighting properties for baby.

Breastfeeding has been challenging, but today Darwin and I celebrate two months together growing and learning. I absolutely love giving him this unparalleled super-food. How could I not want the best for these chins?
Have a beautiful day, foodies!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Curry Roasted Cauliflower


If you've been to the Ten Ingredient Project homepage recently, this cauliflower might look familiar. Actually, the version pictured on the website is a real recipe from Epicurious, and the version here is my hurry-up-and-cook-while-baby's-sleeping recipe, maybe also the I'm-crap-out-of-onions recipe. I was surprised to find that sweet potatoes added so much deliciousness to this and that overall, minimalist curried cauliflower tastes just as good as its more complicated counterpart. One secret is to use a really flavorful curry powder, i.e. one you've ground up yourself from whole spices (recipe to come--wear your spice snobbery with pride.)

I completed this light meal with a sweet and zingy organic kiwi that my mom sent in my birthday package. Oh yeah, I'm 28 now. That's almost three meal's worth of ingredients! ;)

5-Ingredient Curry Roasted Cauliflower
Prep Time: 10 minutes. Cook Time: 40 minutes. Serves 2.

1 head cauliflower
1 sweet potato
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbls. apple cider vinegar
small handful fresh chopped cilantro

Free Spice Blend
1 tsp. good curry powder
2 tsp. paprika
sea salt to taste

Preheat oven to 400. Rinse cauliflower, chop into even bite-sized florets, and place in a large mixing bowl.

Dice sweet potato into small cubes, about 1cm across (woah, metric!). Combine with cauliflower.

In a small bowl, whisk togetherolive oil, vinegar, and spices. Pour over vegetables and toss.

Arrange veggies on a large baking sheet and bake for around 40 minutes, until cauliflower is tender and browning a bit at the edges.

Scatter cilantro on veggies; serve.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Roasted Kale Chips


I'm a mom now so I get to bust out this classic motherly decree: Eat your greens! Eat them every day. Be hard-core because they're arguably the most nutritious foods on earth. When I was too preggo-queasy to drink green smoothies for breakfast (tears!), I sauteed greens each morning instead. My philosophy about greens is just to do whatever you need to do to get them into your body on a regular basis.

Roasting kale chips almost makes it too easy. Easy like standing over the stove inhaling hot crispy chips straight off the baking sheet until you've made quick work of the entire bunch, and you spend a minute worrying if it's okay to eat that much kale in one sitting, before you remember it's kale, and you've just consumed a super dose of folic acid, calcium, vitamin K, fiber and antioxidants.

When I roast kale chips, I like to "undercook" them slightly, so that the leaves are still a vibrant green and the edges are crispier than the centers. That bright color means that you preserve the most nutrients, and I prefer the combination chewy/crisp texture. Thoroughly roasted kale tends to disintegrate like an Indiana Jones relic in your mouth. (Some people like that.)

Try this a few times with different spice combos and let me know your favorite!

2-Ingredient Roasted Kale Chips

Total Kitchen Time: 15 minutes. Serves: 2 with restraint, or 1 without.

1 bunch kale
extra virgin olive oil

Free Spice Blend
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
&c &c!

Preheat oven to 350. Wash and spin-dry kale. Remove stems and tear leaves roughly into bite-sized pieces.

Pour about a tablespoon of olive oil into your palm and massage raw leaves with your hands. Repeat as needed until kale is lightly coated.

Arrange kale on a large baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and any other spices you like: curry powder, garlic, cayenne, cumin. (Save the black pepper until after roasting, since it won't stand up to the heat of the oven.)

Roasts ten minutes, grind on some pepper, devour, repeat!