weeknight mince

weeknight mince| A Brown Table

There are two things I took away from the Super Bowl, both Beyoncé and Lady Gaga will always be amazing performers, other than that I didn't pay attention to much. Football is more of M's ritual and in some way a religious sports retreat that involves a lot of appetizer types of food. I cooked him his treats as promised and he ate them as expected. I think he saved some of the wings and guacamole for his lunches during the week. 

Just as much as M loves his sports meals, I have my fondness for simple comfort food recipes and recipes with options to cheat and take little time to cook. There are certain dishes that I've probably eaten at least once a week growing up. Mince is one of them and though there are different ways to make mince, this Goan version is obviously my favorite. Though I've skip the carrots and the potatoes in this version (you can obviously add them in, see my kitchen notes below), this is one of my favorite meals to go to during the week. It cooks quickly and requires minimal prep work especially if you can use precut frozen veggies (no shame here). This is one of my favorite weeknight meals! Serve it with some cooked plain rice or or dinner rolls and you're good to go. If you're familiar with kheema, then mince will sound similar, it's simply a Goan version of kheema, similar flavors yet very different.

I cooked the mince in this gorgeous pan from . All-Clad's new cookware collection by Chef Thomas Keller. As with all of All-Clad's classic cookware, this stainless steel five-ply pan is a sleek and sexy beast. There's a universal lid that's equally modern and elegant to match the pan. There's a layer of copper sandwiched between the stainless steel to ensure quick and even heat for cooking. And now the folks at All-Clad are giving away one of these gorgeous 5 quart sautéuse pans that you for you to cook with! To enter all you need to do is leave a comment below and tell me what you're favorite comfort food is. This giveaway is open to all legal residents of the United States and will run from February 9th to February 16th till 12 pm. The winner will be announced and notified via email and will have 24 hours to respond.

weeknight mince| A Brown Table
weeknight mince| A Brown Table
weeknight mince| A Brown Table
weeknight mince| A Brown Table
weeknight mince| A Brown Table
weeknight mince| A Brown Table

Here are some of my kitchen tips that you might find useful when preparing this dish;

  • Though I use frozen peas, you can use fresh peas.
  • I don't use finely diced carrots in this recipe (as is traditionally used) but you can always add frozen or fresh  carrots. 1 cup of finely diced carrots can be added after the onions are cooked for an additional 2 minutes and then cooked as described in the recipe. 
  • I've also skipped adding fried finely diced potatoes. Again, 1 cup of shallow fried potatoes can be folded in towards the end and stirred for 2 minutes before removing the pan from the stove. 
  • I use tamarind paste versus the concentrate so use less if you decide to use the concentrate.
  • I prefer the texture of canned tomatoes to fresh in this recipe and it works well here. On some days, if I'm out of fresh tomatoes, a can of tomatoes works perfectly in this dish.

CONTEST: This contest has Ended. The winner is Justin, congratulations and happy cooking!!!

weeknight mince| A Brown Table

weeknight mince

yields: 4 servings

ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup diced red onion

1 tablespoon grated ginger root, peeled, fresh

1 tablespoon grated garlic, fresh

1 lb ground beef/lamb

2 green thai chili pepper, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon turmeric powder

1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder

1 teaspoon garam masala

1/2 teaspoon black pepper powder

1 cup frozen shelled peas (or fresh)

1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes (I like to use canned tomatoes in this recipe)

1/4 cup cider vinegar

1 teaspoon tamarind paste

1 teaspoon kosher sea salt

1 tablespoon cilantro leaves, chopped

1 tablespoon mint leaves, chopped

1. Heat the oil in the sautéuse on medium-high heat. When the oil is hot add the onions and cook until they turn light pink and transclucent, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds with constant stirring. Break the ground meat into small chunks and add it to the pan. Cook with constant stirring to break the meat into crumble like pieces using a wooden spoon. Cook until the meat is browned, this will take about 3 to 4 minutes. 

2. Add all the remaining ingredients except for the cilantro and mint. Stir and cover the pan with the lid. Add the salt and reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for about 20 minutes until the meat is cooked. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Remove from stove and garnish with the cilantro and mint leaves. 

Disclaimer: This giveaway is sponsored by All-Clad. All opinions expressed are solely my own.

goan shrimp curry

Goan Shrimp Curry | A Brown Table

Between jet lag recovery and copious amounts of laundry last week, I realized I didn't make any new year's resolutions. Perhaps, I should have but I've been feeling rather good about not having set any sort of objectives for this new year. So I guess this year will be a dynamic one with me being as fluid as possible and living in the moment. Resolutions, adios!

Goa has many beautiful beaches and old churches but as I've said in the past, it is also famous for good seafood. You will find several restaurants built on the sand that serve great food and of course we partook in eating plenty. Though there are several different types of Goan curries, I wanted to share a very simple recipe that I make at home often. I used this curry base to cook shrimp and fish, it's easy to prepare and full of coconut goodness. You have the meat of the coconut which makes this curry thick and rich with a good dosing of dietary fiber. Serve this curry with a bowl of steaming rice or dip hot parathas or rotis into it and sip a glass of chilled beer! 

Goan Shrimp Curry | A Brown Table
Goan Shrimp Curry | A Brown TableGoan Shrimp Curry | A Brown Table
Goan Shrimp Curry | A Brown Table

Here are some of my kitchen tips while preparing this curry,

  • You can skip the shrimp and use fish or veggies (such as peas, corn, green beans etc) , just remember to adjust the cooking time accordingly. I'm not a huge fan of eating salmon in curries but a white meat fish with a lot of flesh will be great here. 
  • You can make this curry as hot as you like or as mild. Adjust the amount of black peppercorns and chili accordingly. If you can't find Kashmiri chilies, you can use thai chili peppers or even cayenne powder. 
  • You could use coconut milk but to keep this dish as close to as what you would eat in a Goan home, I went with unsweetened grated coconut. You can find pre-grated coconut in the frozen section of most Indian, asian and international grocery stores. If you can grate your coconut at home, that's even better! 
Goan Shrimp Curry | A Brown Table
Goan Shrimp Curry | A Brown Table

goan shrimp curry

serves:

ingredients 

1 lb shrimp (I used medium sized but even the smaller variety will be great here)

1 1/2 cups coconut, freshly grated (unsweetened only)

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

8 small dried red kashmiri chiles or 1 teaspoon red chili powder (cayenne can also be used here, adjust amount based on taste or 2-3 thai chili peppers)

1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder

20 black peppercorns, whole

1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds

2 garlic cloves, halved

1 inch piece ginger root, peeled and chopped

1  cup red onion, diced + 1/2 cup thinly sliced

2 cups water

1 1/2 tablespoons tamarind extract (if using concentrate using 1/2 teaspoon)

1 tablespoon vegetable oil 

1 teaspoon kosher sea salt

1 tablespoon fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

1. Devein the shrimp and remove and discard the outer shell. If you like, leave the tail end of the shell on. Keep the cleaned shrimp aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.

2. Attach the blade to the bowl of a food processor. Place all the ingredients from the coconut to the 1 cup of onions and grind to a smooth paste. Add a little water (around 50-100 mL) if the paste does not move during pulsing, you might need to stir things up to ensure all the ingredients combine to form one smooth paste. 

3. Heat the oil in a wok or kadai on medium-high. After about a minute when the oil is hot, add the remaining 1/2 cup of thinly sliced onions and cook until lightly seared and brown (about 4-5 minutes) with occasional stirring. Add the coconut-spice paste to the wok and cook the paste for about 5-6 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated and the mixture begins to leave the sides of the wok. Stir the paste constantly while cooking to prevent burning. 

4. Add the remaining water to the mixture in the wok and stir to combined. Bring the mixture to a boil. Fold in the cleaned shrimp prepared in step 1. Cover with a lid and cook until the shrimp change color and their flesh turns opaque (avoid overcooking as the shrimp can get rubbery). Depending on the size of the shrimp the cooking process can take anywhere between 5-6 minutes for larger ones and under 3 minutes for smaller ones. Remove from stove and garnish the curry with fresh cilantro leaves. Serve hot with steaming rice or naan, roti or flatbread.