LA in the 80's was the homebase of Nouvelle Cuisine. Back in the day, the less that was on the plate and the more one paid for that less was the hallmark of being an LA foodie. In the 80's everything seemed to be about blackened anything, unborn baby vegetables, tiramisu and raspberry vinaigrette. Well, the rest of the food fads have passed on but my love for teeny, tiny perfect jewel-like vegetables, I can't quit that. I see them and I go weak in the knees.
I've got to have have them.
So, when I was at the Organic Farmers' Market here in Sonoma yesterday and saw these little gems, of course I bought them. I also picked up some collard greens, kale and spinach. I was wondering what I could turn these into that would be fast, easy and filling for our lunch. I also had another motive.
It seems that May is Celiac Awareness Month.
No one in our family is gluten intolerant but quite a few of our friends are, and since we entertain a lot I find myself cooking for a wide variety of food allergies. Cooking Indian food is actually a perfect fit for many of our friends. A lot of the dishes are naturally gluten free or vegan so no one has to eat something "special" and when everyone can dig into what's on the table dinner parties are more fun. I always ask about allergies before inviting someone to dinner, and during the week when I experiment with dishes, I usually keep a few friends in mind. This dish (actually a twist on a couple of Indian dishes I already make regularly) was created for Terri who's gluten free and vegan.
Turnips and Greens
Here's What You Need:
12 baby turnips, quartered
1 bunch of collard greens
1 bunch of kale
1 small bunch of fresh baby spinach
1 red onion finely chopped
1 serrano chili finely chopped
4 Tbs vegetable oil (I use coconut oil)
1 tsp of turmeric plus 1 pinch of turmeric
1/4 tsp of Amchur powder (if you don't have it substitute lemon juice)
1/4 tsp Kashmiri chili
1/4 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
1/2 cup of plain yogurt, or soy yogurt for vegans
A 1 inch piece of peeled fresh ginger
1 tsp of nigella seeds
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsp of fresh ginger sliced julienne
Here's What To Do:
Take the collards, and kale leaves off the stem.
Flash cook them in a pot of boiling water along with the spinach for about 2 minutes, then drain and pour cold water over them.
Press out the excess water and pulse them in a food processor, until they're finely chopped.
Set them aside.
Grind the 1 inch piece of ginger with the chopped serrano chili into a paste.
In a skillet or kadhai, heat 2 Tbs of vegetable oil.
When the oil is hot add in the nigella seeds and the ginger chili paste.
Stir fry them until the nigella seeds start to crackle in the pan, about 2 minutes.
Toss in the turnips, along with the ground coriander. 1 tsp of turmeric, 1/2 tsp of salt.
Stir everything around for about 3 minutes or so then lower the heat, put a lid on the pan and cook until the turnips are tender, about 15 minutes.
Set the turnips aside.
In a skillet or kadhai heat 2 Tbs of vegetable oil.
When the oil is hot add in the chopped red onion.
Stir fry the onion until it's lightly browned.
Add in the thinly julienned ginger.
Stir fry it for another minute.
Add in the chopped greens.
Add in a pinch of turmeric, 1/4 tsp of Kashmiri chili and 1/4 tsp of amuchur powder or lemon juice.
Stir everything together well and add in 1 tsp of salt.
Add in 1/2 cup of yogurt (or soy yogurt).
Stir until it's gently heated.
Add in the turnips.
Heat everything together.
Sprinkle 1 tsp of garam masla over everything, stir it in and serve it up.
These turnips and greens, paired with a rice dish, that's all she wrote, or all you need for a great Meatless Monday Spring lunch on the deck.
Coming up next, I get frisky with some gourmet vinegars and strawberry season. Follow along on Twitter @kathygori