Black eye beans and almost round chapatti

Black eye beans

‘I have been and still am a seeker, but have ceased to question stars and books, and  have begun to listen to the teaching my blood whispers to me.’

This is one of those classic dishes that granny made for us growing up and was one of my favourites. It seemed so simple on the plate, but as ever it is a delicate dance of complex flavours and deep layers of spice. The dish is clearly steeped in generations of passed down wisdom with its multitude of beneficial ingredients including with turmeric, garlic and ginger.

‘You left us beautiful memories and your love is still my guide, in everything i do, I still feel you by my side.’

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried black eye beans, soaked for 1-2 hours
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-inch ginger, grated
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tsp. cayenne (adjust to spice preference)
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 cups water

Method

  • Soak the black-eyed beans in water for 1-2 hours. Drain
  • Add the oil and cumin to a heavy set pot
  • Once the cumin seeds start to splutter, add the onion and bay leaf
  • After 7-8 minutes or when the onions begin to turn golden add the garlic, ginger and spices. Stir briefly and then add the tomatoes. Cook for 5 minutes until the tomatoes have broken down
  • Add the drained black eyed beans to the pot, alongside 3 cups of water
  • Mix well and simmer, until the beans are soft. 45-60 mins

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Ingredients

  • 450g/1lb chapatti flour/wholemeal flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 250ml cold water

Method

  • Set aside 200g of the flour and reserve for shaping the chapatti’s
  • Place the remaining flour and salt in a deep bowl. Fill another bowl with the cold water
  • Add the water to the bowl of flour, a little at a time, kneading as you go, until you have a soft elastic dough. The longer you knead the dough the softer the chapatti’s will be
  • Sprinkle a little of the reserved flour onto a flat surface or board. Divide the dough into 8 and shape each piece into a ball. Flatten the balls slightly, and then place one onto the floured board. Roll it out into a flat disc approximately 6 inches in diameter, flouring the board when necessary to make sure the chapatti doesn’t stick
  • Heat a shallow frying pan, lay the chapatti on the pan and cook for 20 seconds until the surface is bubbling, turn over and cook for another 10 seconds, as soon as brown spots appear on the underside the chapatti is done
  • Stack them up as they are cooked placing a sheet of kitchen towel in-between them if leaving them plain or adding butter/ghee if not

Family

Goat Curry and naan bread (Dairy free, Gluten Free, Paleo)

Cooking is love made visible.

Goat curry

I am of Indian decent as you can tell from any pictures of myself and even from my Tasha. Kitchen emoji, but as a child I never quite connected to my Indian heritage. The reasons for this are quite logical; I was born in the UK, my family are Christian not Hindi, apart from my Grandma and I was never taught any Indian language.

It was only as I grew older that I realised culture was much more than where you are born and what language you speak. The Indian culture at least as I have observed it through living with my Grandma is about community and connection. She would open her home up to anyone, for lunch, tea or just a chat. She talked to everyone on the high street and brought them chocolate or samosas on their birthdays. I would often come home from school and be greeted by people I had never met before. Food very much played a part in this, she would make lots of Indian snacks to serve people with their tea –  tikki, samosas, pakora’s –  there were always plenty of tasty morsels being offered around.

One of my favorite days of the week was Sunday when we would gather as a family (and invite others to join us) for lunch after church and meat curry would often be a central dish. This goat curry is in honor of those Sundays, which I miss so much. My grandma used to cook curry’s for days to give depth and tenderness to the meat; we would smell that beautiful aroma and often end up smelling of that aroma too! I used a slow cooker and cooked this for 36 hours, but you can cook it for a few hours if you don’t have time. Having cooked this dish, I can say that I have much more appreciation of how long it takes to make a curry that tastes anything like my grandma’s and if I could go back, I would have the extra spoonful my Grandma offered me, every single time.

This recipe comes from myheartbeets.com, an Indian Paleo website that I recently found. Thank you Ashley for your amazing recipes and for helping connect back to my grandma and my roots.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds goat meat
  • 2 red onions, chopped
  • 5 inch knob fresh ginger, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 1 tbsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 2 tsp. salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1-2 Serrano pepper, minced
  • 1 small (14 ounce) can organic diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. garam masala add more to taste

Method

  • In crock pot/slow cooker, add all ingredients listed except tomatoes, water and garam masala (you will add this at the end)
  • Set to high and cook for 4 hours, stirring the curry every hour or so
  • After four hours, add tomatoes, garam masala and water. Cook on high for another hour or until the meat is tender
  • If you don’t have a slow cooker, cook the onions till translucent for 2-5 mins, then add the garlic and garlic for 30 seconds
  • Add all the spices and stir till mixed in, but make sure not to burn, next add the goat meat and brown
  • Add in can of tomatoes and garam masala and cook for as long as possible, 60-90 minutes minimum

3 Ingredient Paleo Naan (Indian bread)

Ingredients

  • ½ cup Almond Flour
  • ½ cup Tapioca Flour
  • 1 cup Organic Coconut Milk
  • Optional salt

Method

  • Mix all the ingredients together
  • Heat a non-stick pan over a medium heat and pour batter
  • Once the batter fluffs up and looks firm/mostly cooked, flip it over to cook the other side (be patient, this takes a little time) and serve hot

Moong Dal (a.k.a. Mug/Wednesday Dal)

Food is everything we are; it’s an extension of identity, your personal history, your childhood, your development, your family tree and your grandma’s love.

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Life is short: Eat healthy, breath deeply, love limitlessly.

We used to call this dish Mug growing up and as a kid I used to make a lot of fuss when I was served it. The Moong Dal when cooked is a yellow green due to the green of the moong bean and the yellow of the turmeric added. I didn’t like the color much and so used to whine. As I got older I missed the wholesome qualities of this warming dish, with the deep notes of garlic and ginger and just that hint of fragrant spices and would ask my grandma to make it for me so I could freeze it and eat it once a week. As I cooked this dish, the memories of my grandma cooking it every Wednesday came back, those amazing aromas that I now miss so much.

Thank you Mama for your open arms, your listening ears and your unconditional love. You loved me from when I was born, but I loved you all my life; always on my mind, forever in my heart.

I decided to make this recipe as it takes less process that most lentil dishes and can be done in less than 30 minutes.

I am also working in collaboration with my mum on the Indian dishes and she is kindly trying them out so she is able to help me recreate them accurately. This as you can imagine takes time and I’ll therefore be switching back and fourth from the Indian to other tasha.kitchen healthy recipes.

I adapted a recipe from http://vegetarian.about.com, with a few edits from my memory and my mum’s tips.

Moong Dal is naturally low in fat and high in fiber and protein. A 1-cup serving of cooked moong dal has less than 1 gram of fat, over 14 grams of protein, 16g of dietary fiber and around 212kcal, according to (www.livestrong.com). Of course it depends how you cook it, but those stats are pretty impressive. Lentils are also counted as the top 10 healthiest foods on earth (www.goodnet.org).

Ingredients

  • 1 cup moong dal
  • 4 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp. turmeric (Haldi)
  • ½ tsp. cayenne pepper (or chili powder)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil/ghee/water (optional)
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds (Jira)
  • 2 whole cloves
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp. Finely chopped ginger (2cm x 2cm)
  • 1 tbsp. Crushed garlic (2 cloves)

Optional

  • You can sweat the onion mixture in water rather than sautéing it with olive oil/ghee and this makes a healthier version.

Method

  • In a large soup or stock pan, combine the moong dal, vegetable broth, turmeric, cayenne/chili and salt.
  • Bring to a slow simmer. Cover partially with a lid and allow to cook for at least 20 minutes, and up to 30-40 minutes if you prefer a smoother dal. You can add a bit more liquid if needed.
  • In a separate skillet, sauté the onion, garlic, ginger, cumin seeds and cloves in ghee/olive oil or water for just a few minutes, until onions are soft.
  • Add the onions and spices to the dal and allow to simmer for a few more minutes, stirring well to combine. Sprinkle with a dash of black pepper and add extra salt to taste, if needed.
  • Serve plain, as soup, or over rice.
  • Dal tends to thicken up a bit as it cools, so you may want to add a bit more water if you are planning on having leftovers, but there’s also a bit of personal preference involved with just how thin or how thick you prefer it to be.