August 22, 2010

Goat Curry

Goat is a wonderful meat. Even people who don't like lamb usually like goat. I hope we get more goat-eaters in this country soon: goats are inexpensive, ecologically happy animals to raise. They thrive eating plants that other animals can't stand- much less want to eat, such as brambles, briars and ivy. As smaller animals, they obviously don't require the resources larger animals like cows need. Does also produce milk which can be drunk as is, or from which excellent cheese can be made. Goats are awesome!
And tasty... which comes to the point of my post: Goat Curry
yummy stuff.
Goat is often found at the grocers in stew-meat format- usually with the bone. Perfect for this recipe.

Sorry if the photos are a little fuzzy, I took them with my phone. hehe

Firstly, wash the meat, get all the bone-dust off of it, if any.

Then salt and pepper the meat.

Fry the meat really well in a little oil.

Remove from the pan.

Meanwhile, make a paste of garlic, chiles (I used fresh green chiles and sweet red peppers) and fresh ginger. This looks picturesque, but I ended up switching to a stick blender! hehe

Fry some chopped onion in the pan after you have removed the meat. Add some black mustard seeds, cumin seeds, the seeds of a few cardomom pods and fry for a minute until you can smell them, then add a little bit of ground turmeric, and ground allspice. Fry another 30 seconds or so and then add your chile, ginger, and garlic paste.

Have some fresh tomatoes chopped, or use some canned chopped tomatoes. Here I'm using a mixture of sweet cherry tomatoes and a regular tomato and the cherry tomatoes add a hint of sweetness that this curry likes. You might want to add a pinch of sugar to the pot if your tomatoes are not very sweet.

Add the tomatoes.

Add the meat back to the pot. Add a cinnamon stick and water for simmering. Goat cut like this can take a LONG time to get tender. I'm talking as much as 4 hours simmering on low for it to achieve that fall-off-the-bone tender that we are looking for. Trust me, it's worth it. Put the lid on the pot, and have the flame on low. Your house will smell awesome.

Ok! This is our delicious goat curry after our long simmer. I've added a bit of water here and there along the way, and given things a stir from time to time, but other than that, it has done it's thing. Taste to see if it needs a bit of salt and there you have it!

Some tasty ways to serve this are with rice, flat-breads, crusty loaf breads, or with cubed potatoes added into the curry itself. Garnish with your favorite greenery- be it parsley or cilantro or even some minced lettuce for crunch.


May 26, 2010

Scrapple and scrappin'

So, you know after my whiney post from yesterday about how busy I am, I realized that I might not have time to do photo walk-thrus of recipes, but I DO have time to talk! Jeesh >sheepish grin<
So, this weekend I got to talk with some people about different comfort foods and the conversation turned to scrapple.
If you don't know what scrapple is, well, that's a subject up to debate, and there are sites dedicated to it. Some say that it is called scrapple because you use the "scraps" from hog butchering, but I know I've read other theories on that, but honestly, can't remember what they are. The scraps theory works for me. hehe
Anyway, since I don't butcher piggies, I don't have scraps laying around. So, this is grocery store scrapple, but it is still economical and delicious. Some scrapple recipes also use buckwheat flour, but I've always made mine with cornmeal and flour, so that, dear readers, is what I'll pass on to you.

1.5 cup corn meal
3/4 cup flour
1 lb bulk sausage
1 lb chicken livers or pork liver if you want to be über authentic, or leave it out if you're a wimp
About 2 qts of chicken broth/broth and water mix
spices: black & red pepper, sage, thyme, & salt

So, what you are going to do is cook the meat, and you can fry it, or simmer it in the water or broth. It needs to be chopped into very small pieces regardless. Bring the liquid to a boil, turn the heat down and add the cornmeal and flour. Stir.
What you are looking for at this point is for the cornmeal to thicken. It can take 15 -30 minutes to achieve this altered state. You will know it when it happens. It will also start to hold its "shape", sort of like whipped cream does, when dropped from the spoon into the pot. This is important, because scrapple needs to gel. When the pot has changed texture from soup to, well, like cream of wheat cereal, then it's ready to turn out.
Turn out into a greased loaf pan. This recipe will most likely give you two loaves. Let cool.

How do I eat scrapple? Well, after the scrapple cools, it is now a bonafide solid loaf. Turn it out, slice it, dredge it in a little flour and pan-fry it until golden on both sides.
My preferred method then is to eat with maple syrup. This is not everyone's way, however, and some use ketchup, butter, applesauce, fried apples, or plain with eggs. Honestly, that part is up to you.

Don't turn your nose up at this oft-maligned peasant food. It is really tasty. Pass me the big slice of Americana -with syrup, please.

May 25, 2010

Life eats my time

This has been a bad blogging year. Renovating a hundred year-old house, full time college student and full-time Mom extraordinaire- sorry folks, but the foodiness is suffering.
Sometimes I think it's all I can do to put healthful and tasty food on the table for my kids- sometimes, when I'm really tired, I even get tempted to give in to their childish demands of hot dogs and mac n'cheese >shudder<.
I still think about this blog, and when my kitchen is renovated, and my life is more my own I'll get cooking, but just wanted to let people know I was still alive and kicking :)
This new house has a grape-vine. Never had access to fresh grape leaves before....hmmmmm.