Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Dinner in 30 minutes or Fewer

Dear Elise,
Remember those Penzey's spices I bought when we went to the Penzey's Spice Shop as part of our Foodie Tour of Seattle? Well, I used some tonight. (Not the Cake Spice that you disparaged as containing all spices that you already owned so why would you need the mix?) I had a Sweet Curry Powder and a Vindaloo Curry Powder and I wanted to sample and compare.
And it was 7 by the time I had walked and fed the dogs. I make a chicken curry with tomatoes (I substitute V8 juice for the tomatoes). It is really a curry chicken salad but very often I leave out the yogurt and eat it hot. The Sweet Curry Powder went into that one.
Then I make a curried spiced chick pea dish, a maje fave. The recipe calls for individual spices, (right up your ally) and I used the Vindaloo blend for that.
Both were good, but the Sweet one was not as complex and nuanced as the Vindaloo. And the Vindaloo was much hotter.
I also used coconut oil for both. I have read, or maybe just heard, (maybe true, but perhaps not) that coconut oil is the new best thing, very healthy and so forth. It was good. Better with the chick peas, lost in the chicken curry. (I want to try it in brownies.)
Everything was better with the chick peas. Maybe I just prefer chick peas. And since I didn't have to open, measure out, close and put away 6 different spice bottles, everything was ready before 7:30. Suddenly Dinner!
For dessert? Dark Chocolate, as we read in the paper today (so it must be true), mice who consumed dark chocolate for two weeks performed 50% better on an endurance test than mice who didn't get any chocolate. Preaching to the cocaophiles maybe, but I'm sold.
Love, spice blends and dark chocolate, Margaret

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