Somehow making a meal just for yourself can be a special event unto itself. Usually, I am cooking for my wife and I, which means that I take great pleasure in asking my wife how much she enjoys the meal. I must confess, I thrive off of her compliments for my cooking. But, tonight she is away with a friend, so the meal that I had planned to cook went into my stomache, with leftovers for lunch tomorrow. I sat down at the table with a small glass of Forty Creek Whiskey, Faure’s requiem playing in the background on my record player (one of my favourite classical pieces), and slowly anticipated each bite, allowing my mind to wander and simply relax in the moment of having accomplished something. This recipe was a bit more complicated than some that I have tried in the past-and it involved a large amount of ingredients that I was unfamiliar with, so it was a marvelous thing when I was able to sit down and discover, to my surprise, that the food turned out deliciously well. I love cooking, but I am very-much new to it and am still learning about the many ingredients available to me. I am learning to walk right now.
This recipe was, in a word, delicious. It is an all vegetarian dish with a surprisingly robust flavour. It is also very filling, which is always nice for a vegetarian dish. Give it a try, and tell me what you think!
- 200g chickpeas (canned)
- 7 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 inch piece of fresh root ginger, chopped (or ginger powder)
- 2 green chillies, seeded and finely chopped
- 4 tbsp peanut oil
- 2 tsp cumin powder
- 2 tsp ground coriander seeds
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tsp mild paprika
- 50g walnuts
- 250g tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 600-900g parsnips, cut into chunks
- juice of lemon
- salt and ground black pepper
- Set 2 tsp of garlic aside, then place remainder in food processor with onion, ginger, and half the chillies. Add 5 tbsp of water and process to make a smooth paste
- Heat oil in large deep frying pan and cook cumin for 30 seconds. Stir in coriander seeds, turmeric, paprika, and walnuts. Add the ginger and chilli paste and cook, stirring frequently, until the water begins to evaporate. Add the tomatoes and stir-fry until the mixture begins to turn red-brown in colour.
- Mix in the chickpeas (including the water contained in the can), and parsnips, as well as 1 tsp of salt and plenty of black pepper. Bring to a boil, stir, then simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes until the parsnips are completely tender.
- Add a dash more cumin with more salt and some lemon juice (to taste) and stir in the reserved garlic and chilli. Cook for another 1-2 minutes. Sprinkle with your favourite garnish and some walnuts and serve.
For the Artichokes:
- Trim the artichokes of the dark leaves, including around the stem. Cut about 1/2 inch off the end of the artichoke to allow the leaves to loosen. Let artichokes rest in water with lemon juice for a time, and then bang the artichokes down on a flat surface to further loosen up the leaves. Fry in olive oil until crisp.