From the delicious shrimp curry I made for dinner last Sunday (try to ignore the completely unrelated cookbook page with masa boats in the background):
I served the curry over some brown rice with a little dollop of the mango marinade on top (didn’t have any chutney, so this worked quite well in a pinch). If you’re going to make this recipe, which I highly recommend as an easy, delicious and very healthy meal, I would make the following substitutions:
- Use light coconut milk instead of 2% milk; the coconut milk is a bit more in keeping with the other flavors of the dish and imparts a much richer, sweeter taste to it.
- If you like a bit more crunch (which I do), make it a full cup of diced celery.
- I used Maharajah curry from Penzey’s, which is sweet instead of hot. It’s also chock-full of saffron (*swoon*) and it’s salt-free! If you prefer a hotter curry, well…use a hotter curry powder.
- I added a teaspoon of powdered ginger root to give the otherwise sweet curry more of a pop. You may not like this much ginger, but it sure did make the curry hum.
- Finally, because a little butter never hurt anybody, I added an extra tablespoon of butter while I was sauteeing the shallots, celery, apples and garlic. But please, people, if you’re going to do this — use good butter!!! If you’re not going to use good butter — real butter — and are instead going to poison your body with margarine or oleo, why are you even bothering to cook? Just go to KFC, buy a family-sized bucket of wings and thighs and just get it over with.
My sweet Richard ran to the grocery store tonight to grab some fresh veggies and a bottle of wine to go with the lovely fat porkchops I had planned for dinner. In a hurry to beat the impending thunderstorm, he grabbed the first bottle he saw that looked appealing. It turned out to be something called “White Merlot.”
I know, I know…but bear with me.
I’m generally not a fan of Merlot, or most red wines for that matter, because they’re too tannic for my poor stomach to take. So I’m mostly stuck with lightly chilled Pinot Noirs and loads of white wine. But this “White Merlot” — which is, really, a kissing cousin to White Zin — was fucking fantastic. And before you heap your vituperation upon me, I know that it’s not really Merlot. So just cool your heels, pups.
It tasted like a Bartles and Jaymes wine cooler, I’ll be the first to admit. But it tasted like a Bartles and Jaymes wine cooler would’ve tasted to a 16-year-old sneaking her first taste of sweet, forbidden alcohol. There was something familiar and comforting about its cloying sweetness and tangy raspberry undertones. It was like smelling a perfume that you used to wear in high school, but haven’t encountered in twelve years; you wonder how you could have ever liked it to begin with — it’s too overt and it’s trying too hard — but there’s still that undercurrent of soft memories, first crushes and awkward homecoming dances that makes it irresistable to your jaded adult senses.
Just in case you couldn’t tell by my rambling prose, I am quite tanked on White Merlot right now. It’s great. I highly recommend it if you’re feeling sentimental. Or just thirsty. Either way…
If you’ve got time, listen to this great little segment from All Things Considered about a man who decided to create his own farm in his tiny Brooklyn backyard, complete with chickens, ducks and rabbits.
Man Lives Off the Fat of His Brooklyn Land
I can’t wait for the book to come out!