Tag Archives: passata

a vegetable curry … ish

Well, it was meant to be a vegetable curry, but I’m not convinced it turned out like that.

I love pulses and beans, and keep serried ranks of jars in my cupboards, all containing various varieties of same. Last weekend, I thought I’d cook up some kidney beans, so I poured some into a bowl and covered them with water, left them to soak. Then on the Sunday, I cooked ’em up in the slow cooker. On Monday morning, I drained them into a colander, and thought “Gosh. That’s a lot of beans”. I do this regularly, and I really must learn how many cooked beans a given quantity of dried beans transmutes into. “Lots” seems to be the general answer.

In a “lets clear the fridge of all the old veg”, between us Pete and I chopped red onions, aubergine, butternut squash and sweet potato. And garlic and ginger was liquidised into a paste. I took the black Le Creuset out of the cupboard, looked at the bowl of beans, and got out the enormous faux Le Creuset that I bought in Sainsburys for about 45 quid (about ¼ of what a genuine one would cost).

In my ongoing attempts to lose weight, I’m using far less oil to cook, so I put about, oh, a dessert spoonful of groundnut oil, in which I softened the onions, then added quite a lot of garam masala and cooked it off. In went the garlic/ginger paste, then the cubed veg. Turned it all round to coat it, and get it started, then added passata, and sufficient water to cover the mix, and some seasoning. When the veg were almost cooked, we shoehorned in the kidney beans (not easy, I can assure you), and left it another 15 minutes or so.

It was really, really nice, but not very curryish. No matter. And it made 10 portions for really not very much money at all.

what to do with leftover kebab #2

This follows on, really, from here. We had even more left over this time!

I cut up an onion and some garlic, and fried them off in olive oil. Then I added a heaped teaspoon of Ras el Hanout and fried that off for a minute or two. In went the meat, cut into smallish pieces, then some chickpeas. I’d put the chickpeas in to soak the night before, and boiled them up in the morning, because I am too mean to use a can unless I’m caught short (as it were).

There were, inevitably, more chickpeas than would fit in the pan.

I added about 2/3 of a carton of passata, and a slug of cider (as that bottle is still in the fridge and, you know, I don’t want to waste it ..). Tasted it, and it was a bit sweet, so I added the juice of half a lemming. Simmered it all for about 20 minutes, ate with rice. Made a nice lunch (as previously noted, we tend towards main meal at lunchtime on Tuesdays, due to Morris practice).

[Edited to add]
It made loads, and so I lobbed in the remainder of the chickpeas that were leftover, and put it all in the freezer!

pasta, pancetta, passata (how alliterative)

And here’s what I did with the half carton of passata!

I go Morris dancing on a Tuesday (yes, really – I do), and I prefer to eat at lunchtime on those days. Still not done any shopping, so …

Chopped onion and garlic, softened off in olive oil. Added a packet of pancetta cubes and a little dried chilli. Bunged in the passata, and rised the carton with some cider (well, it was in the fridge and needed using up!).  Let it cook down while we rustled up some pasta.

Stirred in fresh basil leaves at the end, and smothered in grated parmesan. Very nice.