Little Indian Elephants

One fantastic thing about San Francisco is its love of Indian Pale Ale, every local brewery seems to make a good one, especially the one we found with the elephant on the label. It comes in a cute bottle, and did I mention the elephant? Anyway, the beer and then the beautiful cauliflower we bought at the farmer’s market on Sunday inspired me to make a curry to eat while we drink the beer. Here’s what I did.

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Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry

2 Tbsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp tumeric
1Tbsp ground coriander
1 Tbsp chili flakes
1Tbsp fresh grated ginger
Oil (I used olive oil because that is all my kitchen has, but you could use any)
1/2 red onion
1/2 white onion
4 cloves garlic
1 head of cauliflower
1 can chickpeas
1 cup frozen spinach
1 handful fresh coriander
Juice of half an orange
Splash of coconut water (you could also use stock or coconut milk, this is all I had at home)

To serve

Rice- obviously
Natural yoghurt
Fresh mint
Roughly chopped raw almonds (hazelnuts are even better with cauliflower if you have them)

Heat your oil and add all the spices, garlic and the grated ginger. Fry these until it has made a kind of paste like base for your curry. Now add the onion and slowly fry. Next comes the cauliflower, spinach, coriander, chickpeas, orange juice and coconut water or milk. Put the lid on the pot and simmer for at least half an hour or until the vegetables have softened and flavoured. Mine simmered for a good couple of hours as Ollie’s meeting lasted a little longer than expected, which was fine as it meant the flavours really had time to do their thing. I served it with some natural yoghurt, fresh mint and some roughly chopped raw almonds. And of course, a cold beer.

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Picnic Potato Salad

Yesterday was the ultimate lazy summer Sunday. We ate delicious toast with rhubarb jam in bed, read books and then wandered down the road to discover the Divisadero Organic Farmer’s Market which is on every Sunday morning. There were piles and punnets of any berry you could imagine, leafy greens, sweet stone fruit, pastries and bread and fresh cut flowers. There were hippies, hipsters, dogs, babies and yoga mat carrying young professionals. We picked up all sorts of fruit and vegetables from which I quickly made a few salads before meeting friends in the park for some sunshine, food and beer. It was perfect. And now my legs are a bit like a pasta pomodoro– all you can see is red, even though you know it is white underneath…

But anyway, here’s the recipe for the potato salad we enjoyed in the sunshine.

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Picnic Potato Salad

About 12 new season potatoes
2 spring onions
2 stalks of celery
1 handful of capers
1 heaped Tbsp whole grain mustard
A few big glugs of olive oil
Juice of a lemon
Salt and pepper
1 big handful of fresh mint
Big bunch of rocket

Half your potatoes and put them on to boil. While they are doing their thing, finely chop the spring onions and celery and add to the capers, mustard, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. When the potatoes are cooked, run under cold water to stop the cooking and cool them down a bit, and then add them to the bowl with the dressing. When they have cooled down completely, add the roughly chopped mint and rocket and combine. The result is a fresh tasting summer salad, perfect for a picnic. This would also be a great addition to a BBQ for next time you offer to bring something.

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