Tuesday, August 24, 2010

the lingering smell of happiness

I adore PBS (unless they are begging for more money) and the cooking shows that they have! Adventures with Ruth is usually good for some exotic deliciousness-this time it is curry! So we decided to do the recipe from the website Prawn Varuval. I have made some adjustments to the recipe-Leslie's diet and the lack of a good Indian food supply store near me (kari/curry leaves?? really? I would love to try fresh curry leaves, so if y'all know a good purveyor, leave me a comment- please! meanwhile, omitted for lack of sources), and I have to say- it is fairly fabulous! Leslie had a gazillion zucchini from the garden so we served it with freshly sauteed zucchini-just seasoned with salt, as curry is spicy enough- and organic brown basmati rice (I heart sunflower market). I thought this would be a fast and easy way to get back into the habit of posting my experiments. This summer has been crazy busy with work, continuing education workshops, and just plain summer fun activities. I will try to do better about posting- but don't expect me to turn into Amy Green overnight. :-) This dish is great for summer, as it is super quick to throw together and as odd as it may seem, the spicy lime scented shrimp seems to cool you off. One caveat- your house will smell, not unpleasantly, of curry for a few days. Lingering smell of happiness, prompting me to cook something else.

I have submitted this to Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.

Indian Spiced Shrimp (because I butcher the pronunciation just as much as you)

3 tablespoons oil/ghee (whatever works for you)
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek seeds (or 1 teaspoon of ground fenugreek)
1/4 teaspoon of Indian brown or yellow mustard seeds (or 1 teaspoon ground mustard)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 to 1 teaspoon Indian Red chile powder (or similar amount of Cayenne)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (or kosher)
1 lb jumbo(about 20) shrimp, peeled, leaving tail segment attached and deveined.
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 medium cloves)
1 piece of fresh ginger (1 inch x 2 inch) sliced thinly lengthwise (about 12 slices)
1 lime
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper (recipe prefer Tellicherry)

Ok, so if you have access to the spices whole-take the fenugreek seeds and mustard seeds and grind them together in your spice grinder. Alternately, use the already ground counterparts; as you can see whole freshly ground spices pack more of a punch. You might need to adjust for flavor and your preferences. Put ground spices into a large bowl; add cumin, chile powder, salt and coriander. If you can't find ground coriander, try looking for a spice mix called garam masala- it will have cumin, coriander and black pepper (among other Indian spices) and works nicely here. Add shrimp, tossing to coat well with spices.

Heat oil (we used avocado, as Leslie is wary of ghee being completely casein free- but authentic tasting would be ghee if you don't have her issues) in a heavy skillet (or wok) over medium high heat until hot, then add garlic and ginger, stirring until garlic is golden-about 1 minute. Add shrimp and cook, stirring until pink and just cooked through, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and sprinkle with pepper and squeeze lime over. Serves 4 if you have small appetites. Served 2 of us.