Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My Little Garden

This is a picture of the little fall garden I planted recently in my front yard.  I still need to cover the ground with mulch.  Right now I have several types of lettuce, broccoli, kale, red onions and white onions.  I've never grown any of them except for lettuce (which turned out great last year) so I'm excited to see how it will go.  They look pretty perky so far.  I'm posting this for anyone who has a small bit of dirt in which to plant and might be inspired to start their own little garden. It really doesn't take that much work, and it feels great to eat stuff you grew yourself. 

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sweet Potato and Spinach "Eggrolls" with Spicy Thai Chili Sauce

Make this dish!  Veggies have never tasted so good.  I mean it.  I am so excited to share this little concoction.  I was inspired by the sweet potato and spinach curry that I had recently at The Asian Rose restaurant in Santa Cruz.  I knew that I had some wonderful organic sweet potatoes in fridge. I found some spinach and a pack of Azumaya square eggroll wraps in the freezer.  I ad-libbed the rest, going to my regulars, onion and garlic, for help.  Here's the "recipe" although I have to say that the amounts may be off because I didn't measure everything.  I just went with my instincts, and you should too.  It's definitely more fun that way. 

Makes about 8 rolls, which fed me 4 times.  They save in the fridge for a couple of days–great for a busy student such as myself.

-2/3 large sweet potato
-1/3 box frozen spinach defrosted and drained (if you have fresh stuff, even better!)
-2  cloves of garlic
-1/4 white onion
-1/4 cup Korma sauce or other Indian sauce (I used store-bought, but you can make your own using this recipe from foodslut or one of the many others available on the internet.)
-1/8 cup Spicy Thai Chili sauce (also store-bought, and optional–you can use whatever sauce sounds good to you)
-1 tsp Cayenne pepper (optional)
-Salt & sugar to taste
-Oil to cook with (I used my Wok Oil again, but you can use whatever)

1. Defrost and drain the spinach.  Take out 1/3 of the box and put the rest in the fridge and use it to make a dip or something later.
2. Defrost your wraps if they are frozen (it only takes a few seconds so be careful!)
3. Peel the sweet potato, cut it into chunks, and boil until soft.
4. While the potato is boiling, sautee your garlic and onion in a little bit of oil.
5. After a few minutes, add your Korma sauce and spinach to the pan with the garlic and onion.  
6. By now your sweet potatoes should be soft.  Transfer them to a bowl and mash em up.
7. Add the spinach, garlic, onion and korma mixture to the mashed potatoes.
8. Taste it. (This is a very important step!)
9. Add salt and/or sugar, depending on how you like it.
10. Stick about 2 tablespoons of that yummy filling you just made into each wrap and roll them up.  Start by folding the bottom over the filling and then tucking it just under the filling.  Then fold in the sides and roll up.
11. Pan fry for a few minutes on each side.  Pay attention so you don't burn them.  I like to use my spatula to hold them on the narrow sides for a few seconds so they get cooked all around without deep-frying.
12. Stick those pockets of crispy goodness on a paper towel to drain some of the excess oil. 
13. Pop them on a plate.
14. Drizzle with Spicy Thai Chili sauce or other sauce of your choosing.
15. Eat!