I don’t usually post more than one recipe in a week but today I have some time to myself and I feel there’s no time like the present. I still have loads of sorting out and unpacking stuff to do (and I did some of that this morning) but I definitely prefer sitting down and writing something useful here. Well, I’m letting you be the judge of whether I do come up with useful things or not. I love being here though so why not?
**Since writing that last sentence this is what happened: I have been wanting to upload this since this afternoon. Since around 3pm. But some cable in my monitor has been giving me loads of grief. Keyboard and mouse also broke. Only now is this thing working. So at the moment I’m running on reserve. It’s now 7.**
I feel as if I just moved in a new place, when in fact our house has been ours for ten years. Everything feels new, when in fact it is not. I am constantly trying to figure out what to keep in my larder. It should be simple I know, but somehow I am not happy with what staples to keep in there in order to be able to come up with store cupboard recipes. I have been taking care of that for ages, but not here. Shopping habits also had to change. I tried making lists, google-ing lists, asking people for advice which they readily gave, bless them, but I just cannot get into the groove. I know I will get the hang of things again but it’s going to take some more time.
I’m sure I’m on the right track though because I made this recipe around two weeks ago with some basic ingredients I had both in my cupboard and the fridge and it worked out fine. The method is quite simple and hassle-free – that’s exactly how I’d like my cooking to always be.
For the rice:
- 1 cup basmati rice
- 2 cups water
- 2 to 3 tablespoons rapeseed oil
- ¼ teaspoon sumac
- ¼ teaspoon garam masala
- ¼ teaspoon curry powder
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped or crushed
- 2 red onions, finely sliced
- 1 large courgette, cut into cubes
- 1 large red pepper, cut into cubes or strips
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and washed
- 200g dried prunes, chopped
- salt and pepper, to taste
- a good handful of fresh parsley, washed and roughly chopped
- flaked almonds, slightly toasted
For the vinaigrette:
- 1 tablespoon honey
- juice of 1 lemon
- pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
Place the rice in a pan with double the amount of water and cook by absorption. In the meantime, prepare the vinaigrette by pouring all the vinaigrette ingredients in a measuring jug and whisk them together until you get a smooth mixture. Also, toast the almonds in a dry pan for a few minutes. These will not take long so keep an eye on them. Set these aside when they turn a lovely golden brown.
When the rice is cooked through and is tender, tip it in a medium mixing bowl and fluff it up with a fork. Pour the vinaigrette over the rice and give everything another mix with a fork to keep the rice as airy and light as possible. Set aside in a warm place until needed.
Add the sumac, garam masala, curry powder and cumin to 2 tablespoons rapeseed oil in a large shallow pan. Give them a minute or two to infuse and add the garlic and onions. Let them turn opaque and stir in the courgette and red pepper. When they start to soften, tip in the chickpeas and prunes into the pan and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Let the mixture cook for around ten to fifteen minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the chickpea mixture and toasted almonds to the rice, give everything a mix and serve immediately. Sprinkle the fresh parsley over each individual bowl. For 2 with leftovers or 3 hungry people.