Thursday, December 10, 2009

Explosive Chewing Gum?

A new terrorist weapon?

Nope. Just a new method of winning a Darwin Award.

What next?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Sweet Curry Something

It's a dip. It's a spread. It's a relish. It's a dressing. It's...whatever you need it to be. Best of all, it's easy.

I don't usually measure by regular teaspoon/cup kind of volumes. I eyeball it, and if it looks good, I use it. But that doesn't translate well for most people, so I'll use various types of balls for measurements and see how well that works. And keep in mind that my method of cooking is open to interpretation and the personal touch.

First, you really need a heavy-bottomed pot with a tight fitting lid. And wooden stirring impliments.

a golf ball of finely chopped red or yellow onion (not sweet)
oil/ghee to cover bottom of pot
two baseball sized tomatoes, finely chopped
two heaping coffee spoons of masala*
a golf ball of honey

Heat the dry pot to medium, then add oil when pot is hot. Add onion immediately, stir with wooden spoon, and keep stirring occasinally until onion starts to caramelize and turn brown.

Add tomatoes, cooking and stirring for about five minutes, until the tomatoes start to break down and go mushy.

Add the masala. Cook and stir another five minutes until the mixture feels thick and smells wonderful.

Add the honey. Mix well. Wait till it starts to bubble, then put the lid on, turn the heat down to the lowest setting, and let simmer about forty minutes without peeking. It's not going anywhere.

After forty minutes, do a taste test. If it's too spicy, add a little more honey to adjust the flavor. If it's too sweet, add a little more masala (but if you do this, you need to let it keep cooking at least another ten minutes; raw masala is not recommended for your digestive system).

It should be thick-ish, and dark red/brown in color. If you think it's too thin, you can let it cook a little longer with the lid off to reduce it; but it will also thicken a little more as it cools.

You can use it hot or cold on meat, vegetables, rice, pasta, bread -- just about everything except ice cream (and I won't make any bets about that, either).

*Masala is an Indian spice blend. You can get powder blends and paste blends; and they come in hot, medium, and mild. Which one you use is up to you. For my first batch, I used an MDH brand powdered chana masala blend (it's fairly hot). You can also use any of Patak's curry paste blends.

This "recipe" is only a guide. Adjust it to your own tastes.