Everyone Needs a Go-To Dish
In his How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, Mark Bittman tells his readers to learn five solid dishes — learn them, remake them continuously and pull them out of your pocket whenever you have last minute guests, nothing to eat around the house or when your brain doesn’t want to think about dinner. My dish that I remake over and over, but can’t seem to get sick of, is a Thai curry soup.
Soup, as always, is incredibly versatile. While I typically make this soup with lentils, it works well with just veggies or with any meat. It was, in fact, the hit of the Thanksgiving leftovers. Like Bittman says, I like this recipe because it’s now a mindless dish, but because I’m so used to it, it also allows for some creativity with whatever I find in my pantry.
Here’s my recipe. I like to make thicker, more stew-like soups, but feel free to mix and match with whatever suits your taste … the glory of soups! I throw in whatever veggies I have around the house, but almost always a sweet potato and cauliflower. This is also a great dish to make ahead and reheat throughout the week.
- 1 white onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- Ghee (or olive oil), but ghee is SO good
- 2-3 teaspoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped
- 1 head cauliflower, chopped
- 1 cup lentils, washed and picked over
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth (or water will do)
- 1 can coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Lime and cilantro
Cook onion and garlic in ghee until soft. Add spices and a pinch of salt. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Add sweet potato, cauliflower and lentils, cover with vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Let simmer and adjust seasoning to your taste (I usually add more spices here). Cook until potatoes and lentils are soft. Add coconut milk and maple syrup if you desire a sweeter taste. Let simmer for about 10 minutes until flavors meld together. Finish each bowl with a squeeze of lime and a few sprigs of cilantro. Enjoy!