Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Vegetable Rogan Josh

Although Indian food wasn't part of my family's daily norm, it was definitely part of our home culture and I remember it featuring at many dinners growing up. While I don't remember rogan josh ever making an appearance at home, it's a dish I've long loved to order when eating out (especially with mutton - oh my yum!) and it was exciting to finally try my hand at it! I remain in love with it, and I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

I would have asked the owner of the local Indian restaurant for a recipe, but then I realized that would be somewhat against his business interests, so what follows is a fusion of this recipethis recipe, and this recipe plus some spinach 'cause I felt like some extra iron wouldn't be a bad idea! I heartily second the addition of a dollop of yogurt when serving, but as it's Lent I haven't had the chance to do that with this particular recipe yet. (But let's be real, yogurt is always a good idea!) This has been simplified a great deal as some ingredients weren't easily available and I have a dislike of dirtying a bunch of extra dishes just to be able to make something like a ginger puree. Apologies for my laziness, much more authentic recipes inspired what's below and are linked above!

Vegetable Rogan Josh

1 medium or large hot pepper*
1/2 cup of olive oil
1 medium-large onion (chopped)
4 to 6 cloves of garlic (crushed/minced)
2 teaspoons of curry powder
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
1/2 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
1/2 teaspoon of ginger
1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
Salt (to taste)
1 1/2 cups of tempeh (cubed)
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
4 medium-large tomatoes (chopped)
1 1/2 cups of water
1/2 head of cauliflower (chopped)
1 large potato (cubed)
1/2 large bunch of spinach (chopped)
1 cup of coconut milk
Cilantro (garnish)

*Cook's choice. I went with the only thing available in my local supermarket here in East Asia.

1) Lord, bless!
2) Cook the pepper (whole) in a large pan or pot until the skin begins to blacken and pop a little. Remove from heat and dice the pepper (use some gloves to keep the oils from getting onto your fingers and from there possibly to your eyes!).
3) Heat the olive oil in a large pan and sautee the onion until it becomes translucent.
4) Add the crushed garlic and continue sauteeing until the onions are soft.
5) Add the diced pepper and sautee another two or three minutes.
6) Make a paste with the curry, chili, cumin, garam masala, ginger, turmeric, and salt with a little water and add it to the pan, sauteeing one or two minutes (until fragrant).
7) Add the tempeh, tomato paste, and tomatoes and continue sauteeing for a couple more minutes.
8) Pour in the water, add the cauliflower and potato, and bring the mixture to a boil before covering the pan, reducing the heat to low, and simmering for 20 to 30 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
9) Once the vegetables are done stir in spinach, bring to a boil briefly, and then add the coconut milk and combine.
10) Serve sprinkled with fresh cilantro over rice and - if possible - enjoy with a good flatbread instead of knives and forks!

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