Sunday, May 29, 2011

Curried Beef and Eggplant (or Nightshade Delight)

You probably notice that we eat a lot of curry.  Today's recipe is a variation on a standard theme in our household:  meat, veggies, and spice (often, curry spices).  I have at last progressed to the point where I make my curries by taste.  I no longer need my carefully measured out curry powder to make meals.  I keep my base spices (cayenne, turmeric, paprika, chili power [Indian/Asian], cumin, cinnamon, and salt) is a nifty spice container (a masala dabba) that has a small measuring spoon (about 1/4 tsp) in it.  I use the same general proportions and keep adding a "round" until I think the spice level is about right (a little less cayene/chili power when semi-Paleo mom is eating, a little more when it's just Husband and myself).

[Picture forthcoming - the user is experiencing technical difficulties]

  • 1 lb Ground beef
  • 1-2 Tbs Ghee (or coconut oil)
  • 2 small eggplants
  • 1 can fire-roasted tomatoes, with liquid (you could use fresh here, but do take the time to roast the tomatoes -- it makes a world of difference -- you'll also want all of the juices from the tomatoes)
  • 2-3 rounds curry mixture, where 1 round equals:  1/2 tsp Turmeric powder; 1/2 tsp salt; 1/4 heaping tsp paprika; 1/4 tsp cayenne power; and 1/4 tsp chili powder
  1. In a large pan, brown the ground beef until almost cooked.  Drain fat.
  2. Meanwhile, wash, dry, and then cut eggplant into cubes.
  3. Heat ghee in a large pot (I used a smallish stock pot).  Once melted, add diced eggplant.  Cook until almost softened.  [Note:  you could use the beef fat here, but I like the taste of ghee, tomatoes, and curry and didn't feel that I needed the additional fat from the beef.]
  4. Add tomatoes (including liquid) and ground beef.
  5. Add 1 round of curry mixture.  Mix and taste.  Keep adding rounds until it is to your liking.  If you need a little more heat, add a little more cayenne and chili powder.
  6. Let simmer until flavors have melted together and eggplant is softened to you liking.
  7. Serve and enjoy.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

I'm Back + Mother's Day Dessert

Sorry for the long absence...we've been in the process of moving to another state.  Seems like it has been crazy, but now we're settled.  Or almost settled...except for the fact that the movers broke our 'fridge and it won't be repaired until sometime this coming week.  I miss that appliance more than I ever thought I would.  At least our chest freezer works!

Here's the dessert I made semi-paleo mom for mother's day.  I'm ashamed to admit that before we switched to a healthier diet, I didn't think bananas were sweet.  Seriously?  They almost send me into a sugar coma now.  Definitely a decedent, special occasion (but silly easy!) dessert.

Fried Bananas
  • Coconut oil
  • 2 Bananas (green ones work better)
  1. Slice bananas fairly thin.
  2. Heat coconut oil over medium heat.
  3. Once oil is melted, all bananas in a single layer and let cook until caramelized.  Resist the temptation to look too often, as they may become "mushy".
  4. Turn bananas and let other side caramelize.
  5. Remove from heat and serve.  Also great with a little toasted coconut.