Cilantro Veggie Curry with Veggie Sauce

Nothing but goodness in this all-veggie curry with veggie sauce, plus extra veggies.

Cilantro Veggie Curry

Cilantro Veggie Curry with Veggie Sauce, plus extra veggies with veggies on top.

 

This is the perfect warm, mildly spicy dish for January, as it fits into just about ANY health-conscious approach to eating you can think of. It’s vegetarian. It’s vegan. It’s gluten and dairy-free. It fits with paleo, Whole 30, and all other manner of dietary reset plans. Even if your only resolution was to eat more vegetables, period, this fits the bill and then some. Bottom line, it’s absolutely packed with vegetables and vegetables only, save for the spices and broth – the sauce itself is made from pureed veggies that are incorporated into the dish itself.  You cannot go astray with this one.

I fist discovered a version of this in Nigella Lawson’s How To Eat, and have been tinkering with it for years. My latest additions are golden beets and cilantro, plus a touch of turmeric, all of which brighten the dish up. This iteration isn’t terribly spicy – you could certainly add more cayenne if you like, or more heat in another form. Add it to your meal in any of the aforementioned approaches. 

Be warned: this does take a good amount of veggie prep – nothing complicated at all, just requires a leisurely-afternoon-in-the-kitchen-with-podcasts-or-good-music-playing approach. This recipe makes a huge batch, so expect to freeze some of it for the future.

 

CILANTRO VEGGIE CURRY

2 onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon each cumin, coriander, and paprika
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon each allspice, cardamom, and ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more or less to taste)
4 cups vegetable broth plus 2 cups water
3 red bell peppers, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
8 ounces crimini mushrooms (a.k.a. baby bella), sliced
1 rutabaga, diced
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 large parsnip, peeled and chopped
1 bulb fennel, trimmed and diced
1 teaspoon salt (add more to taste at the end)
juice and zest of 1 lemon
3 zucchini, sliced into half-moons
8 ounces green beans
1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped

Combine the onions, garlic, spices, and 3 cups of the broth in the biggest cooking vat you’ve got (see above re: recipe yielding a huge batch). Bring to a boil and cover to cook for 5 minutes. Add in peppers, carrots, celery and mushrooms. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently, for another 6-8 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Cool just a bit.

Puree half the mixture in a blender or a food processor (I’m a fan of immersion blenders for hot stuff in many cases, but this wouldn’t work as well here; just make sure to hold the top of the blender on firmly, using a towel to be safe). Using the Ninja here was perfect, done in seconds flat and totally secure for blending hot stuff!

Return to the pot. Add rutabaga, cauliflower, parsnip and fennel, stirring to combine well, and pour in the rest of the vegetable broth and the water – this should be just enough to ALMOST cover the vegetables. Add salt and bring back to a boil.

Reduce heat, cover, and cook at a low simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in lemon juice and zest, zucchini, green beans and cilantro. Simmer all together uncovered for another 10 minutes, making sure all the vegetables are tender but never soggy. It makes a HUGE batch, and I recommend dividing whatever’s left into a few individual portions and popping them in the freezer for posterity.

— posted by Anne

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