Chickpea and sweet potato curry

An easy, tasty and lazy weeknight meal. Warm and spicy and filling.

Ingredients
2 small onions (or 1 larger one), diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
an inch (or so) of ginger, grated
1 table spoon curry mix of your choice, ground
1 can chickpeas
1 large sweet potato, cubed
1 cup water
1 can coconut milk
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 cup diced tomatoes
basmati rice, to serve
1 table spoon peanut oil
ingredients

***

1. In a thick bottomed saucepan warm the oil. Add the diced onions and cook, stirring often, until translucent.
onions

2. Add the garlic, the ginger, and the curry spices. Cook the aromatics with the onions until fragrant.
aromates

3. Rinse the chickpeas and add to the pot. Peel the sweet potato and cut roughly into cubes. Add it to the pot as well.
veggies1

4. Add the coconut milk and the water.
Mix well and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the sweet potato cubes are tender.
liquids

5. Stir in the frozen peas.
peas

6. And the tomatoes.
Once the peas and tomatoes are heated through the curry is ready.
tomatoes

7. Serve with the basmati rice.
serve

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Potage Crécy avec croutons à la croque-monsieur

That is, carrot soup with ham and cheese croutons.
Simple French food but good for the soul. The perfect thing to answer the recent weather.

Ingredients
2 table spoon butter (plus some for the croutons but that is optional)
2 small onions
1/4 cup basmati rice
4 cups carrots (two generous handful)
2 boxes chicken stock
1/2 tea spoon thyme
1 french baguette
Ham (about 10-12 slices)
Emmental cheese (to taste)
Salt and pepper
ingredients

***

1. Melt the butter in a large soup pot.
Only insisting on this because this is one of the few recipes where I wouldn’t swap it for olive oil. Really go for butter.
butter

2. Roughly chop the onions and toss them into the butter. Allow to sweat over medium-low heat for a few minutes. You want to avoid coloring them.
sweat-onions

3. In that time, clean (peel if your carrots require it) the carrots and slice into rounds about 1/2″ thick.
carrots1

4. Rinse the basmati rice until the water runs clear. Add to the pot with the onions and stir to coat.
rice

5. Add the carrots to the pot and stir to combine.
carrots2

6. Add the chicken stock (about 1 1/2 box). Save the remaining 1/2 box chicken stock for later.
Add the thyme, season with salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer for 20-25 minutes.
broth

7. When it’s about done, slice the bread.
Line your baguette slices on a cookie sheet line with aluminum (or parchment paper)

Mine was a day old and a bit dried so I brushed it with melted butter, but that is optional.
slice1

8. Add ham (1/2 slice per crouton) on each piece of bread.
slice2

9.Grate the emmental and add on top of the ham.
slice3

10. The soup should be ready by now, so take it off the heat. The rice should be falling apart and the carrots very soft.
Put the croutons in the oven on broil while you blend down the soup.
soup

11. By the time the soup is blended the cheese should be melted and just, just, starting to get some color. Take the croutons out of the oven.
slices4

12. Adjust seasoning on the soup. If it’s too thick add more chicken stock.
You can add cream, sour cream or crème fraîche at this point if you want, but I usually don’t bother.

Serve warm with the hot melty cheese croque-monsieur.
The soup should be filling but light and bright and the cheese and ham savory and satisfying.
serve

Duck Confit

Rich, slightly decadent and surprisingly easy to make Duck Confit. The garam masala and ginger add wonderful aroma to the duck.

It needs slow cooking, at low temperatures, otherwise it because tough and dry, so plan ahead to have plenty of time.

Ingredients
2 duck legs
1 table spoon sea salt
1 garlic clove, roughly peeled and the cloves separated
1 average knob of ginger, sliced
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 table spoon of whole Garam Masala
1 star anise, broken in pieces
1 table spoon whole pepper corns
3-5 table spoon of duck fat (optional)
1 cup of basami rice
Green and yellow beans, to taste
ingredients

***

1. Pre-heat the oven to 250F

2. Place the duck legs skin down in a large pan, over medium heat. Add the salt. Cook until the legs are brown and begin to render fat. Reduce the heat and continue cooking for 15 minutes,

sear1

3. Turn the legs over. Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
sear2

4. Prepare the ginger and garlic and mix together all the spices.
aromates

5. Add the ginger, garlic and spices to the duck legs. Once you start smelling the spices, transfer to a large dutch oven (or other lidded oven safe container). Add duck fat as needed to make sure the legs are swimming in fat.
add-spices

6. Bake for 1 hour to 1h30, until fragrant and the meat is detaching easily from the bone.

While the duck is baking, rinse the basmati rice until the water runs off clear. Boil 2 cups of water, add the rice and turn the heat off. Cover and allow the rice to absorb the water for 30 minutes.

Also rinse and steam the green and yellow beans.
bake

7. Allow the duck to rest a few minutes when taking it out of the oven. Serve with the rice and beans.
serve