Despite being a Mainer, I tend to eat a lot of international dishes- mostly because I LOVE flavor, but also because I really like vegetables! This is one of my favorite curries. It can cook itself and it includes zucchini and summer squash, which aren’t found in many dishes, and are found in abundance in any well-watered garden. Because it’s a curry, this recipe also works well with frozen squash and zucchini that you’ve blanched from last season. I recommend you thaw it first if you’re going to do that.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 quarts of home canned tomatoes (plain), or 64oz store tomatoes
- 2 zucchini cut lengthwise and into slices
- 2 summer squash cut like the zucchini
- 1 diced onion (optional- less or none can be used)
- 2 diced garlic cloves (optional- go easy on the garlic, add less or none)
- 1tsp turmeric
- 1tsp cinnamon
- 1tsp curry
- salt and pepper to taste
- pinch of saffron (optional)
Depending on your dietary choices, you can also add one of the following:
- 2 cups soaked chickpeas or 2 cans from the store (can also add a not-chicken boullion, optional)
- 1 package extra firm tofu, cubed (can also add a not-chicken boullion, optional)
- 1lb lamb or goat (can brown in a skillet first, optional)
- 1lb boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs (can brown in a skillet first, optional)
Always prep your kitchen first- get out a skillet and a spoon. Dice your veges, and pre-measure your spices. Get out the tomatoes and chickpeas/meat/tofu. Plug in the crockpot. You get the idea.
Next, put a bit of oil in the skillet and preheat it on medium. Be patient and don’t turn up the heat or your onion will cook unevenly. Add your onion when the pan is hot and saute it until it’s clear. Then add your garlic. Don’t add your garlic sooner because it will overcook it and make your curry bitter. By time your onion is golden color, your garlic will be done and fragrant. It’s done. Put it in your crockpot.
If you’re making meat, you can add a bit more oil and throw it in the same pan to brown it.
Add your tomatoes, veges, and spices to your crockpot with the onions and garlic. Add your bouillon if you prefer, and your beans/tofu/meat. Give it a stir. I cook it on high (my crockpot only has 2 settings) for approximately 5-6hrs. My gauge for knowing when it’s finished is when the veges are very soft and can be cut with a spoon, and it’s bubbling. DO NOT keep lifting the lid to check it. For every time you open the lid, you add cooking time. I check it at 5hrs, and again at 5.5hrs if I suspect it needs more time.
I eat this over a half/half mix of long grain brown and basmati rice. I cook the rice by washing it and using a 1:2 ratio of rice to water. I bring the water to a boil, add the rice, cover it, and put it on medium low until the water is gone and the rice is soft and damp. Then I turn the burner off to let it slowly cook the rice as it powers down and let it sit until it’s not mushy anymore.
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