restjes, deel 3982.

This turned out way better than expected, light and with an almost eggy texture, so before I forget.


what to do with leftover rice.
2 cups leftover cooked rice
4 tbsp leftover plain yogurt or homemade tzatziki
3 tbsp chickpea flour
pinch ground coriander
pinch ground ginger
pinch ground turmeric
pinch cumin seeds
possibly 1 or 2 tbsp water, probably depends on your rice
a good bit of salt
coconut oil for frying
pinch nigella seeds and/or black sesame seeds

So, I just put the rice in the food processor and zhoomed it up, possibly having first added the tzatziki to make it easier to process. Then added everything but the black sesame seeds and processed it for 30 seconds or so. Then decided it needed some water but not too much, you're going for a pancake batter that will spread out a little when it hits a hot pan but will also flip without falling apart.  After you throw some batter in the pan, throw a pinch of black sesame seeds on the side facing up. When the little air bubble holes appear after 2 or 3 minutes, flip and hope for the best.




So the other night My First Internet Friend went for a 23km hike through the frozen tundra, a hike whose endpoint was literally right around the corner from here, and so I made a kind of stupidly complicated appetizer with which to welcome her to this fair city.

This is a chickpea flour pancake with tamarind syrup (loosely based on this) topped with a dry potato curry (closely based on this), mint pea mash (not visible in photo), pudina pachadi or "green chutney" (here), Anna Jones' roasted maple-lime coconut, and some little pink cubes of Turkish pickled turnip.

I was trying to make something that tasted like bhel puri but wasn't cold, and yes, this did that. Sure would be nice if there was a slightly easier way to get that feeling though, maybe it would be as simple as skipping the potatoes and peas, just making the pancakes, two chutneys, toasted coconut and some store-bought Rice Krispies.


new curry 2.

Yeah, no posts, I know. What can I make. I imagine there'll be a Winter Photo Roundup Jamboree at some point, but for now what-a we have-a to offer is some continuing documentation of Papyrus Problems 'round the globe.

And.......segue........also some continuing terse documentation of recent Indian food successes. I thought that the Anna Jones curry from last month was pretty special, and while I'm pretty sure it still is, this kind of even simpler and rounder version from Kristy Turner's vegan cookbook that I can't even type the name of because it offends my tender sensibilities was really almost every bit as good. I could imagine making both of them for a dinner party kind of thing if you could decide which one would more resiliently handle swapping out the main ingredient since they're both sweet potato curries. I kind of think this one would be good no matter what the main ingredient was.


sweet potato and red lentil curry with green peas and spinach.

1 medium or large red onion, chopped
1 tbsp coconut oil

4 garlic cloves
one 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
one 2-inch piece fresh turmeric, peeled

1 tbsp sambal
1 tbsp curry powder, I used Chan's Surinamese masala
1½ tsp garam masala
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
good pinch smoked salt
2 or 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
3 cups peeled and chopped sweet potatoes (about 2 medium)
1 cup red lentils
1 cup coconut milk
1 tsp to 1 tbsp Dutch appelstroop (mm, kind of like molasses or treacle, start with 1 tsp)

1½ cups frozen green peas
2 handfuls fresh spinach, leaves roughly chopped

1 teaspoon black salt (kala namak) or sea salt (didn't have this)

Melt the coconut oil in a pretty big pot and throw the onion in. "Meanwhile", process the garlic, ginger, and turmeric and after the onion has browned a bit throw this stuff in too. Don't burn it, if you start to run out of liquid/oil you can either add more coconut oil, or toss some coconut milk in, or some of the broth you'll be using in a minute.

After say 5 minutes of cooking the onion/paste mixture, throw in the sambal, curry powder, garam masala, turmeric, black pepper and smoked salt, cook for maybe 3 minutes. Then add the broth, sweet potatoes, and lentils. Cook for maybe 20-25 minutes, until your potatoes are almost done. Throw in the coconut milk and appelstroop, cook for 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Add the peas, cook for 5 minutes, make sure everything's still hot and the frozen peas have become unfrozen, then throw in the spinach and serve over the starch of your choice. Serves, mwahhh 4 at the most.



new curry.

I've always thought that Indian cooking was probably the hardest kitchen to properly replicate at home. There is nothing hard at all about this recipe, and while it's not something you'd ever be served in your standard curry house, it hits all of the "Indian food" bullseyes totally squarely. Lightly adapted from Anna Jones' A Modern Way To Cook.


sweet potato curry with roasted coconut, lime and tamarind + cauliflower rice.

1/2 of a giant cauliflower
2 tbsp olive or coconut oil

2 tbsp coconut oil
1 red onion, chopped fine
2 garlic cloves, minced
a thumb of ginger, peeled and minced
1 fresh red pepper, or an equivalent amount of dried
1 tsp ground turmeric

2 average carrots, peeled and cut into coins
400g sweet potato, cut into 1/2-cm thick wedges? plakjes
200g cauliflower, cut into 1/2-cm thick plakjes
1 tbsp fennel seed
1 tbsp mustard seed

1 400ml can coconut milk
1 400ml can peeled tomatoes
2 tbsp tamarind paste

200g unsweetened coconut pieces
zest of one lime
2 tbsp maple syrup

200g spinach, washed


Process the cauliflower until it looks like couscous. Toss it with the olive oil, spread it out on a baking sheet and roast for 12 minutes at 200C. Remove, salt to taste, and set aside.

Standard curry making instructions for onion, garlic, ginger. Throw seeds in, wait til the mustard seeds pop, then throw in everything else up to tamarind paste. Cook for 25 minutes or so.

Put the coconut flakes flat on a baking sheet, sprinkle/drizzle/eetc the maple syrup over top and roast in that same 200C oven for 3-5 minutes until lightly browned.

When curry is ready, throw spinach leaves in and serve over cauliflower rice with toasted coconut on top.



batting cleanup.

When cleaning out a kitchen, I mean truly cleaning out a kitchen, in the way that moving the kitchen to another part of the house would necessitate....well, one finds things. For example one might find four or five unfinished bags of red lentils, or dried couscous, or penne pasta or some other pantry staple that one uses semi-frequently but that always seems to somehow evade completely being used.

Another class of found food would maybe be the things one might have purchased as a kind of diet or health or one-time cooking experiment and then lost track of almost immediately after one realized that absolutely zero members of the household enjoyed ingesting the substance in its natural state. Spirulina powder springs to mind. Flaxseed. Nori.

I kept stumbling across this giant bag of dried cranberries every few months while looking for something else and then forgetting about either its existence or its location. But now: gotcha.


cranberry-mandarin-ginger something.

3 cups dried cranberries
1 cup water
1/3 cup raw sugar
zest and juice of one actual orange
zest and juice of one actual lemon
some number of the about-to-go-bad dry-as-shit mandarin oranges from the airbnb upstairs, peeled and sectioned
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
whatever unoxidized nuts that have been abandoned, chop-ped
a pinch of cinnamon, cloves, and/or nutmeg?

Add all ingredients and boil lightly until it tastes like something.


bdoodje tempeh.

This was buried in another post, but now it's graduated to the big leagues. Pictured above is a pretty A+ broodje tempeh from Warung Mini in Den Haag last week (yes, it's being eaten in a car). Their broodje kouseband was also way above average, but the tempeh was just about perfect. Thus there will soon be an attempt at recreation, based on this.




Probably time to jot this one down as well, it's Ottolenghi, but this is the slightly less complex and expensive version.


wortelgroentenstamppot met rode uien.

80g red lentils
1 celeriac (600g), peeled and cut into chunks
2 big old carrots (300g), peeled and cut into chunks
2 sweet potatoes (600g), peeled and cut into chunks
70g butter, diced
2 tbsp maple syrup
1½ tsp ground cumin
salt and black pepper

2 tbsp olive oil
600g red onions (roughly 6 medium), peeled and cut into eighths
200ml red wine
400ml vegetable stock
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 or 2 tsp dried thyme, depending on how much you like thyme
1 tbsp brown sugar
smoked salt, or well, salt
30g butter

The instructions on how to do this are important in terms of doneness timings.

Put the oil and onions in a heavy pan and fry, stirring occasionally, for five minutes until lightly browned. Add the wine, stock, bay, peppercorns, thyme, sugar and a pinch of smoked salt, cover and simmer for an hour. Remove the lid, raise the heat and boil until the liquid is reduced by half, or you are left with a 1/2 inch of sauce.

Fill a sizable pan with boiling water and add the lentils, celeriac and carrot. After 10 minutes, add the sweet potato. The vegetables should be just covered by the water. 10 to 15 minutes later, everything should be fork-tender but still toothsome.

Drain all that shit, getting rid of as much liquid as possible, and then mash everything with one of those stamppot mashers. Or whatever you normally use to coarsely mash things. Mix in the butter, syrup, cumin and cooked lentils, season to taste, and keep warm.
Then I just add the last tbsp or two of butter to the shallots, simmer/reduce for 5 minutes and serve, topping the mash with shallots and sauce.

Serves at least 4.




Hi. Let's talk about food.

And here is an especially promising new thing, got it from here, did it camping style with no oven so I imagine the recipe will change eventually, but tonight was pretty darn good. Instead of a meat sauce I made this Lentil Bolognaise with Afghani spices instead of Italian. Here's where the idea came from. I bet toasted pumpkinseeds would be a good experiment on top.


kaddo bourani (sweet afghani pumpkin with spicy tomato-lentil sauce and garlic yogurt).

3 tbsp butter
2 onions, chopped fine
2 carrots, diced small, smaller than you usually would
100g tempeh, diced the same smallness as the carrots (optional)
1 tsp ground coriander (or more, this is the most important taste)
1/2 tsp ground turmeric (or more)
3 cloves garlic, pressed
3 cans tomatoes
2 tbsp tomkllllllllllllllllllloikjjjjjjjjjjjato paste (thanks Pip)
2 tsp sriracha
1 cup green lentils (not the fancy kind)
1 cup water
a pinch smoked salt
a pinch red chile flakes
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 small pumpkin,  peeled, seeded, and cubed into 1.5-cm cubes or something like that
some cooking method

2 cups yogurt
4 cloves garlic, pressed
2 tsp dried mint
salt to taste


Mmm, it went something like this: melt the butter in a big pot. Throw in the onions and carrots and tempeh if using and saute for 8 minutes or so. Then throw the coriander and turmeric in and saute it all for 3 minutes or so. Then the garlic, for a minute or two. Then the tomatoes, the tomkllllllllllllllllllloikjjjjjjjjjjjato paste, the sriracha, the lentils, and the water. And maybe the salt, chile and pepper too. Yeah go ahead. Do it. You're going to cook this business for about 30 minutes, or until the lentils are al dente, possibly adding more water as you need to to give the lentils something to soak up. If you do do that you'll probably need to adjust salt and pepper again.

Meanwhile, on another burner if you're camping like I was and don't have an oven to do Helmand's candying thing linked to above: boil the squash in water for 10 minutes or so, or however long it takes the squash to be cooked but still hold its shape. Drain it and caramelize the outside of it in sugar and melted butter (roughly 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp sugar).

Oh, right: before you do any of this, make the yogurt sauce: go into the fridge and find the oldest of the several buckets of Greek yogurt that are in there. Scrape off any gross looking parts and throw away any watery liquid that has accumulated. With what's left, use a silicone spatula to make it look pretty, then add the garlic, mint, and salt to taste. Don't tell anybody what you just did. Stir to combine. Let sit for at least an hour before you do the first two steps.

Serves probably 4.