Friday, May 11, 2012

I will chop and you will like it.

When I hear the phrase 'primary caregiver', I can't help but think it sounds like 'only' caregiver. Obviously I know what primary means—and as the parent who is home all day with Lil'E, I am the one who does the bulk of the job. But there are two of us, so I hate having the "primary" title. I'm not sure what my point is here...I guess I find it unfair to hubby when he does his (almost) fair share. And when hubby is home, it's definitely nice to have someone there to pass the baby to.

Basically, I need a break by 5pm, so I'm glad Hubby's hands-on. He comes home for lunch most days, but it's usually when E is eating, so I still only get a few minutes of baby-free time before he has to head back. So when he gave me a hard time about spending 'too long' making a couple of new recipes for dinner, I was a bit put-off, I gotta be honest. An hour by myself in the kitchen is like an hour in my own private little oasis. I'm sorry if the baby is fussy for you for an hour, honey. He's been fussy/attached to me for the past 4 hours straight. You can handle it. Me? I'm gonna go get lost in some chopping.

These are great Indian recipes for if you want something different and crazy flavorful but without a whole lot of work (no matter what your spouse thinks)—they have lots of ingredients, but most are spices.
Indian Tomato Chicken (Tamatar Murghi)
Half a large brown onion, coarsely chopped
4 cloves garlic
About a 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and thickly sliced
Olive oil
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp cardamom
1 inch of a cinnamon stick, crushed (or a good dash of ground)
1/2 tsp all spice
2 bay leaves
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Boneless, skinless chicken thighs (6-8, less if you have a small pan)
1 can diced tomatoes

In a blender or food processor, combine onion, garlic and ginger, and pulse/process til smooth. (Or you can dice everything if you don't have a processor) Heat about a tbsp of oil in large saute pan (the biggest you have) over medium high. Add onion paste and saute about 10 minutes. Add all the spices and cook another couple of minutes.

Add chicken and turn it over/move around until each piece is coated in spice mixture. Try to have them touching but not overlapping in the pan. Pour in the can of tomatoes (with juice) and about a 1/4 cup of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium low and cover. Cook 45 minutes, then remove lid and cook another 45 minutes. The sauce should be really thick-only add a tiny bit of water if it looks like it may burn.

Potatoes and Cauliflower (Gobi Aloo) 
Olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small piece ginger (1/2 inch), peeled and minced
2 large russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garam masala
salt to taste
About 1 pound cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized pieces
Big pinch chopped fresh cilantro (plus more to serve)

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Sautee garlic and ginger about a minute, then add the potatoes. Stir in turmeric, paprika, cumin, garam masala, and 1/4 tsp salt. Cover and cook another 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the cauliflower and cilantro into the saucepan and toss everything to get the cauliflower as coated as you can. Reduce heat to low and cover. Stirring occasionally, continue cooking 10 minutes, or until potatoes and cauliflower are tender. Add salt to taste.

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