This recipe is not a science – add or subtract any ingredients you’d like to come up with the right healthful combo for you. Red potatoes, leeks, pineapple and cauliflower are often welcome additions to a vegetable curry. To blanch the tomatoes, make an X in the bottom of each tomato, drop into boiling water for a minute or two and drain. When cool enough to handle, peel skin from the X at the bottom. Cut in half and squeeze out seeds.
1 TBS butter
1 TBS canola oil
1 large red onion, chopped
3 large carrots, shredded
1 green, yellow or red bell pepper, chopped
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 unpeeled green apple, diced
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 cup blanched, peeled diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
2 tsp red, green or yellow curry paste or 1 tsp curry powder
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup coconut milk or heavy cream
2 tsp cornstarch
1 TBS cold water
Cooked Asian noodles or rice
Cilantro, for garnish
In large skillet, melt butter with oil. Sauté onion, carrots, pepper, mushrooms and garlic until softened. Add diced apple. Cook 2 minutes longer. Add thyme and curry paste. Cook, stirring to coat vegetables. Add tomatoes, bay leaf and chicken broth. Cook, uncovered, 10 minutes. Add coconut milk or heavy cream. Heat through. Remove bay leaf. Make a slurry of cornstarch and water. Stir into vegetable mixture and cook until sauce is thickened. Serve over noodles or rice, garnished with cilantro.
Serves 4 – 6.
Gary: Curry can have some heat to it, so avoid young, overly tannic reds and high alcohol examples that can throw this dish out of balance. Try a Hungarian Tokaji, a German Silvaner or an Alsatian blend (Edelzwicker). Whites with a light sweetness like an off-dry Riesling (think Mosel and Rheinhessen in Germany) and pleasant Chenin Blancs would pair nicely. This might be the time to try a dry Rosé which is abundant because so many red wine producers are taking advantage of concentrating their reds by bleeding off premium color-tinged juice out of the fermentation vats. Also rich, round and supple reds would be perfect, such as Grenache from the Rhône and Garnacha from Spain and some of the lighter California Zinfandels or softly dry reds with dried fruit.
Honey Roasted Pear Salad with Goat Cheese
Next to fresh figs, pears are the most underrated fruit of all time. Sweet, tender and versatile, here they are sweetened with honey and paired with goat cheese for a sweet and mellow end-of-summer salad. Feel free to add roasted apples, fresh grapes or figs – and change up the cheese to brie, feta or queso fresco. Instead of pine nuts, sprinkle on pecans, walnuts or sunflower seeds.
4 pears, halved and cored
4 TBS honey
4 TBS melted butter
1 bag mixed mesclun greens
1 small package plain goat cheese, cut into 4 slices
Honey Dressing (recipe follows)
Chopped scallions or toasted pine nuts, for garnish
Preheat oven to 475°F.
Drizzle honey over pears. Pour butter over each pear. Roast 10 minutes. Using tongs, turn each pear over. Roast 10 minutes longer or until tender and slightly browned. Remove from oven and cool. Arrange mesclun on 4 plates. Top with pears and goat cheese. Spoon Lemon Honey Dressing over all. Garnish with scallions or toasted pine nuts.
Lemon Honey Dressing
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/8 cup honey
1 tsp grainy Dijon or Pommery mustard
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
In large bowl, whisk together lemon juice, honey and mustard. Whisk in olive oil.
Gary: I consider Sauvignon Blanc a classic pairing with Goat Cheese – though there are certainly other wines that would work. With the citrus/lemon, sweetness of the honey and the power of the mustard, try a Riesling – its yin/yang of acid and sweetness would be perfect for this dish, perhaps even more so than a dry Sauvignon Blanc. A lightly sweet Prosecco would be perfect as would an Orvieto Amabile from Umbria in central Italy. For dry whites and considering the mustard, some of Italy’s earthy and aromatic wines from Campania (Fiano, Greco) might rise to the occasion.
Cinnamon Apple Galette
Rustic and delicious, galettes are an easy way to serve pie without all the fuss. For ease of preparation, use a store-bought pie pastry. Freeze the second crust for later use.
1 pie pastry, thawed
3 McIntosh apples, peeled and thinly sliced
1/3 cup sugar
1 T flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 tsp sugar
Vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a large bowl, mix apples with sugar, flour, cinnamon, vanilla and cranberries. Pile in center of crust, leaving a 2-inch border. Fold pastry border up, pleating to fit around the filling. Sprinkle crust with the 2 tsp sugar. Bake 45 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt. Serves 4.
Gary: Certainly any botrytised late harvest wine would be delightful with this dessert. Also consider some of the lesser known dessert wines, such as Coteaux du Layon from the Loire, Recioto di Soave from the Veneto, a finer quality Vin Santo from Tuscany and a Vendange Tardive from Alsace. Moscato in sparkling and late harvest styles would be a superb match, as would some of the Lake Erie and Niagara ice wines.