Vindaloo

Happy Almost Friday Fellow Foodies!

I love Indian Cuisine. One of my favorite Indian dishes is Vindaloo. I discovered this dish while living in Kinsale, Ireland. I have been obsessed with it since the moment I tasted it. It is one of the spiciest curries out there. It is not the heat that makes it my obsession, but more the flavor that accents the heat. Curries are regional in India. There are as many different curries as there are towns. Vindaloo (also pronounced-Vendaloo, bendalo, bindalloo) comes from the southwestern coastal state of GOA. Traditionally it is made with pork or goat, but I have seen it done with lamb, chicken, beef, and duck. I usually make my vindaloo with chicken since I always have a ready supply on hand. I have made a great version of vindaloo with smoked tofu as well. If you are a vegetarian, this is an excellent option!!!

Vindaloo does take some patience and time, as you need to marinate your meat 24-48 hours. Don't be afraid of the mix of spices in the recipe either, if you don't have them in your pantry, they are all available at any good grocery store these days. Don't be afraid of the long list of items you need. (Curries commonly contain anywhere from 3 to 20 different spices.) If you like spicy foods, as I do, this is one dish that is worth the effort!

Vindaloo
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1 tsp. black (you can use yellow) mustard seeds
1 medium/large onion-peeled and quartered
4-6 cloves garlic-peeled
1 Tbs. ginger (I use the kind in the jar)
2 Tbs. malt (red wine, white wine, cider, or rice) vinegar
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
1/2 tsp. ground clove
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon.
1 1/2-2 Lbs. meat of choice cut into 3/4 inch cubes

1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 cup sliced onions
1 Tbs. turmeric
1 Tbs. paprika
1 tsp.-1Tbs. Cayenne or hot chili powder
1/4 cup tamarind concentrate (you can use 2Tbs. lemon juice to substitute)
2 tsp. kosher salt (you can use table salt if you have to)

Begin by toasting the mustard and cumin seeds over medium high heat until fragrant (about 5 minutes). Make sure you keep the seeds moving in the pan or they will burn, and you'll have to start over. Grind the toasted seeds to a powder with a mortal and pestle, or in a spice mill. Put the onions, garlic, ginger, vinegar, and oil into a food processor and puree until a very smooth paste forms.

Stir in the toasted, ground seeds, the cinnamon and the clove. place you meat into a large non-reactive bowl. pour the marinade over the meat and fold gently together. Allow the mixture to marinate overnight to 48 hours before going on: You can mix this up very early in the morning and use it that night for dinner if you are pressed for time.

Heat the 1/4 cup veggie oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onions, and stirring every few seconds to prevent burning, cook for 12-15 minutes until the onions are nicely browned.

Add the turmeric, paprika and Cayenne, and cook until the spices turn a dark red and sizzle. Add the meat-reserving the marinade-and toss everything together. Turn the heat up to medium high and brown your meat. Turn the heat down to low/medium low, stir in the remaining marinade, and the tamarind (or lemon juice).

Cover the pan and allow to simmer for 20-30 minutes until the meat you are using is cooked through and tender. Season with salt and serve with Rice, Naan bread, and Indian style chutneys.
Vindaloo with rice, garlic pickles, and mango chutney


NOTE: The beautiful golden colored rice in the picture above is very easy to achieve. Simply add a small pinch of turmeric to the cooking liquid before adding your rice. Don't add more than a small pinch though, or your rice will turn an odd orange color and have too much turmeric flavor.

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