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Saturday, July 31, 2021

Recipe round up: Krishnamurthy Keema and Mustard Green Beans Plus a Bonus of Creole Seasoning

Krishnamurthy Keema

This is a recipe I learned from a friend in college who married into an Indian family. I realized I hadn't made it since Alexander and Dominic were quite small, and I was looking for a quick and easy meal to make with ground beef for a church dinner that Jerome could eat. I had to serve the cilantro on the side, and I substituted a homemade garam masala from Betty Crocker's Indian Home Cooking (do not be fooled by the Betty Crocker label, it was written by Raghavan Iyer, who is an amazing Indian chef), which didn't include coriander, and added a teaspoon of turmeric and 2 teaspoons of Aleppo pepper flakes to make up for what might be found in a hot curry blend.

olive oil
4 medium onions, finely diced
2 cinnamon sticks, broken
16 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons hot curry powder
4 tomatoes or a 28 ounce can crushed or diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, divided
1 cup of water (or water from half of the can rinsed out from the tomatoes)
juice of 2 lemons
4 pounds ground beef
1 bunch cilantro, finely minced

Over medium heat, in a high sided skillet, fry broken cinnamon sticks and onion in olive oil until onions are translucent. Add garlic and cook for about a minute, then add the curry powder and tomatoes. Stir to combine

Put everything in the blender with 1/2 tablespoon of salt. Blend, until the cinnamon sticks are completely pulverized.

Brown the ground beef in the same skillet over medium high heat. Season with the remaining tablespoon of salt. Add the puréed sauce to the pan, and then blend the water and lemon juice in the blender to retrieve all the bits from the side and pour into the meat. Add cilantro (if you are using it in the dish, and not on the side, like I did), and simmer, covered, until well heated and cooked through.

Serve over white rice with yogurt and vegetables and pickled lemons or limes.

Mustard Green Beans

This is another recipe from my college friend. It is very tasty with rice and yogurt, but goes especially well with the Keema.

olive oil
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
1 medium onion, finely minced
2 pounds frozen or fresh, french cut green beans
6 cloves garlic, sliced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Heat the mustard seens and minced onion in olive oil over medium high, covered. When you hear the seeds popping, turn to medium heat and add green beans. Add a tablespoon or two of water if fresh.

Stir in the garlic, cumin, Aleppo pepper, and salt. Cover until cooked through. Serve with the Keema above, or as a side dish to another meal.

Creole Seasoning

This is a great seasoning to keep on hand. I have included two sets of measurements, one for a smaller jar, and one for a larger one.

2 1/4 teaspoons/2 tablespoons paprika
2 1/4 teaspoons/2 tablespoons garlic granules
2 1/4 teaspoons/2 tablespoons onion granules
2 1/4 teaspoons/2 tablespoons black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons/2 teaspoons thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons/2 teaspoons cayenne
1 1/2 teaspoons/2 teaspoons basil
1 1/2 teaspoons/2 teaspoons oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons/2 teaspoons salt

Pour into a jar and shake to mix well.

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Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Craft On: Vacations and Birthdays and Sales, Oh My!

In case you missed it on my main blog page, I just found out a few weeks ago that Blogger/Google stopped sending me any comment notifications about two years ago. I happened to click on the comments tab to adjust something and found around 25 or 30 comments just waiting, some since last January. Please accept my apologies. Some of those were questions, and I am working to answer those notes first. I will try to answer all of them, however. Also, I'm trying to get them to actually send me my notifications from now on - Google actually turned it off and removed my e-mail address, even though that is the address I use to log in and I asked for notification (and used to get them for each and every one without ever turning it off myself). I just found another comment of which I wasn't notified.

We have had an incredibly busy two months, and took several days to go up and down the Oregon coast and the I-5 corridor, visiting friends and family. While it was a bit of a whirlwind, we really needed it, and it was wonderful. We had to take a little bit of a rest last week to make up for it, but it was worth it. Since my birthday was this past Saturday, Rich gave me some excellent gifts. One has already arrived, Traditional Costumes of Saudi Arabia and the other should be here by Friday, Crafts of the Kingdom: Culture and Creativity in Saudi Arabia (for free shipping, get the gift wrapping for $5, which will save you about $7 from the shipping costs). I am so excited about both of these books, not just because they explore the traditional dress and crafts of my heritage, but because they are a treasure for ideas for my knitting, as well.

I have finished a few projects. One will have no publicly modeled photos, except for one on Edith Headless up there. I had enough yarn leftover from making the shorts, that I jokingly said something about making this halter top and Rich told me to get on it. So, this was his birthday/Father's Day gift from me. This would have been completed much earlier, except the pattern had you simply cross stitch the elastic on to the band, so the cross stitches were the only casing it had. I thought that was sloppy, and would get hung up and caught on fingers and shredded in the laundry. So, I simply switched to a smaller width of elastic, and sewed up a casing around the thinner elastic. It's not like Rich will complain if there is less of this garment. The socks were half finished for far too long, and I took them on as my weekend knitting after I finished Alexander's convertible mittens.

I have done almost no serious reading. We have had such a hard two months, and I just haven't been up to it. So, while Desert Queen and X Saves the World: How Generation X Got the Shaft but Can Still Keep Everything from Sucking have been neglected, I read a few happy, little murders (you can see the titles and links in my sidebar). However, the kids and I finished Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea and are enjoying the Anne-girl again as a family. We began Anne of the Island today. When we finish that and Anne of Windy Poplars, I will play the second Anne movie from Kevin Sullivan.

If you have read this far, I want you to know about a sale I have going on through the end of the month. I have a bundle on PayHip and one on Ravelry which include the eligible patterns. If you use the coupon code Top10, you will receive 45% off any of those patterns through the end of the day, PDT, July 31, 2021. Don't miss out on this sale! Usually I don't share the big sales like this with folks who don't subscribe to my newsletter.

Linking to Unraveled Wednesday.

If you would like to receive updates and early notice of new patterns, beta knitting opportunities, and great discounts (plus pictures of new yarns, new tools, fun places, neat hints, book ideas, recipes and more) each month, please subscribe to 1,001 Knits. My best, and sometimes my only, discounts go to my subscribers.

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Sunday, July 25, 2021

Menu Plan: July 25 - 31

How can it already be the end of July?! It seems like time always gets away from me. Our gleaning group has kept us in local, ripe fruit, which is awesome. This week we got about 60 pounds of peaches and 20 pounds of sweet cherries. We also have a lot of yellow zucchini and cucumbers through them. A friend who loves to garden, but lives alone has been keeping us in fresh onions and spring onions, as well as Swiss chard, beets, and radishes. We bring her eggs, and she fills our car with produce. I feel like we are getting a better deal. Our salads and vegetable dishes have been wonderful.

We have two repeats this week, one because I ended up much more exhausted than I expected Friday and shifted gears to a different dinner and because Rich wanted to make a meal for my birthday that he could do largely on his own or with help from the kids, so I wouldn't have to cook it myself. I did the searing of the scallops, but he and the kids did everything else. Also, funny fact, I evidently have seafood on nearly all of my birthdays. I didn't notice until my facebook memories showed me years of photos of meals with shrimp, salmon, crab, lobster, and so on.

I decided to pick up a piece of cake for me, and give the kids some other treats that were safe for Jerome. It seemed so awful to make a delicious cake that all of us could have and he could only watch us eat. I will make my own black forest cake when Jerome is able to have it.

We are now in the fourth of six months of Jerome's allergy diet. This means that he is past the halfway mark, and is ever closer to starting to have foods returned to him. Since we already avoided lima beans and he doesn't care much for bananas (which are the one thing the doctor mentioned as possibly being a permanent loss because of true allergy), I would be thrilled only to have to avoid those in the future. The other kids and Rich like bananas, but we can eat different fruit at breakfast or lunch, and he can avoid banana bread quite easily. Please pray that these are the only permanent losses in his diet.

What is on your menu this week? If you want a recipe, ask and I will provide it as soon as I can. If there are any starred recipes, I will follow up separately with a weekly recipe round up on Saturday. Linking to Menu Plan Monday

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Monday, July 19, 2021

Menu Plan: July 18 - 24

After a whirlwind trip down to Oregon to visit family and friends, we are back home and recovering from our vacation. This was our second trip with one of our kids at home while the rest were with us, but the first that the oldest two and Amira were home while we had only the other five. We realized we have to get used to that. Much of this week is down time and catching up at home and work. However, my birthday is this week, too, and while the Jazz in the Valley folks got the date wrong this year (we can forgive them because of the confusion of last year), so we can't go to that this weekend, it will be on next weekend and they have made it free, I think, so we might take some more kids with us.

We have a large amount of cucumbers and summer squash, plus two boxes of pie cherries that we are going to make into pies and pie filling for the freezer. Rich's aunt sent us home with a few bags of marionberries from her yard, so I have a pie and some marionberry lemonade planned. I am so excited because we were able to get some coconut aminos, so I can start to make a semblance of Asian foods for Jerome now. Also, we are so happy with Banza pasta. It is a bit pricey, but it feels like real pasta and holds up, even in a pasta salad for four days in a cooler/fridge, without turning to mush. It has allowed Jerome to have something approaching normal pasta. If you can get it, I highly recommend it.

We are almost in the fourth of six months of Jerome's allergy diet, and the blessing in our trip was how well and how much the restaurant staff were willing not only to accommodate his needs. Often, they went far above and beyond the necessary, as well, making sure he not only had food he could eat, but delicious food, as well. We so appreciated that. It made our trip much easier than it could have been, though we did bring foods with us that he could eat, for those occasions when he couldn't be accommodated, or for times we were not eating out at restaurants.

What is on your menu this week? If you want a recipe, ask and I will provide it as soon as I can. If there are any starred recipes, I will follow up separately with a weekly recipe round up on Saturday. Linking to Menu Plan Monday

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Sunday, July 11, 2021

Menu Plan: July 11 - 17

This is a big week at our house. Rich was finally able to take some vacation time, less than we initially hoped, but enough that we can take a little break. We also celebrate our 27th anniversary of our first meeting on Thursday. We only know that date, because we met at a dance on a Friday that was the Friday week before my birthday. However, we celebrate it every year. This year, Rich has something special planned, and I am excited about that.

We are in the third of six months of Jerome's allergy diet, which is the only wrench in the works. It makes eating out much more challenging and even eating with others is challenging. In general, I have just been planning on cooking every meal or bringing food he can eat wherever we go. The folks at church have been awesome about checking with us on what he can eat, and have brought meals a couple times. They are so careful to include him, even though I said to make whatever was easiest for them and that we would bring food for Jerome, so they didn't have to worry about it. That is a blessing in our struggle.

What is on your menu this week? If you want a recipe, ask and I will provide it as soon as I can. If there are any starred recipes, I will follow up separately with a weekly recipe round up on Saturday. Linking to Menu Plan Monday

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Sunday, July 04, 2021

Menu Plan: July 4 - 10

We had another busy, but good, week, and between the heat, and the extra work, Rich took Friday off, only to spend nearly the entire day doing work via phone/text/laptop instead of in the garden. At least he has tomorrow off for Independence Day. Now, we just hope and pray that everyone else does, too. Our Independence Day celebrations will include music and fireworks on the lake.

It's another birthday week here. Yasmina turns 13 this week! It is exciting having another young adult in our house. This week is a little cooler than last week, so we aren't sweltering, and we can have more normal meals. It's only supposed to be in the 90s most of the week, with a few days that the over-eager weather shamans are predicting to be just over 100˚. Since they were off by at least four to six degrees all of last week, I think it is safe to assume we won't get to 100˚.

Our beef was delivered, and we have beef for quite a while. Since we didn't order this butchering, specifically, we couldn't ask for specific cuts or roasts, so it is missing some of the things we would have asked for, like the beef cheeks, oxtails, shanks, shin bones, and rib roasts. However, we have a few tenderloin roasts, which will become our Christmas dinner this year, instead of the rib roast, and loads of other roasts and steaks, plus all the ground beef. Since we had to rearrange the freezer to fit it, we found some things that were on my inventory lists, but that nobody seemed to be able to find, though we are missing a package of rack of lamb that we only got two months ago. That was supposed to be for a date night for Rich and me, so I'm hoping it turns up soon.

We are in the third of six months of Jerome's allergy diet. Even when it is over, it will be another year of slowly adding the ingredients back, so it will be a year and a half before he is completely through it. He is going to have Thanksgiving without a lot of his favorite foods, which is why I made a Thanksgiving dinner for him on his week of reprieve. He should have egg back, by then, and I can modify some of the dishes to use dairy free and gluten-free substitutes. It has been rough, and I didn't realize just how much I depended on egg and dairy, lentils, peas, sesame, cilantro/coriander, and even soy (sauce), for our meals - especially the vegetarian ones. I knew the gluten, wheat and oats would be hard, and I knew that dairy would be a challenge, but this has been more than I expected. He can't eat ketchup, for instance, unless we make it at home. He can't have a lot of things like sausages and bacon, simply because their ingredient list simply says "spices" and doesn't articulate which ones, and the company customer service doesn't get back to us (I'm looking at you Kroger!). I have become best friends and a penpal to several companies (even some in other countries, who reply better than Kroger, by the way) to ask about their cured meats/sausages/sauerkraut/etc. and talk to them on a weekly basis. Every can or package we buy, which is a small quantity, means scrutiny. Mustard might be safe, or not, depending on how well they list their ingredients. We hardly buy pre-made foods, so I cannot imagine what this would have been like for people who do. We are doing the best we can, and trying hard for Jerome's sake, but I really, really pray that we get through this well and that he doesn't have to give up anything permanently. His doctor only really thought that bananas might be a permanent loss, but he doesn't love them, so that is no big deal.

What is on your menu this week? If you want a recipe, ask and I will provide it as soon as I can. If there are any starred recipes, I will follow up separately with a weekly recipe round up on Saturday. Linking to Menu Plan Monday

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