When I realized that I was going to need to make a “green” recipe for meatless monday, I think I took it a little too literally.
You know how in movies and books when you were a kid there was always some kind of green- slime monster? Well did you ever wish you could eat that slime? No? Just me? Oh well. I am here to teach you today how to make green slime that is spicy, edible, vegan and delicious 🙂
Only it is not slime, its aloo palak, an awesome Indian dish that I reinvented a bit. Probably not the same authenticity you’d get from an Indian chef, but its still awesome, and probably a bit cheaper than from a restaurant 🙂
First things first, We need ingredients!
(you can find any of these at your nearby grocery store, I found a lot already in my fridge 🙂 )
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 teaspoon of minced ginger
- 1 big onion (or two little ones)
- 1 small green jalapeño pepper (optional if you don’t like spice)
- 1 teaspoon of cumin/coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
- 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric
- 1 bunch spinach (or palak leaves)
- 2 medium potatoes
- AND/ OR 1 small block of tofu
- AND/ OR almond milk
- hot sauce, chilli flakes, or whatever else you got (optional)
- Rice or naan bread or quinoa (optional)
If you can’t find some of these ingredients, or have other spices to substitute or add, go crazy, I feel like adding some basil into this recipe might make for an interesting twist, and the garam masala is nice, but not necessary. It came in a humongous package when I bought it and I only use 1/2 a teaspoon at a time, so its really your call 🙂
LESS GET COOKING!
Step 1: (optional step)
Prepare you rice, quinoa or any other grain you want to eat this on! This is quite the saucy dish, and is served nicely on a grain or with naan bread. (If you want naan, I suggest toasting your bread right before serving your dish so its nice and hot)
Set aside your grain and keep an eye on it while its cooking and go off to make the rest of your dish!
This step is not required if you like a stewy- meal, but if your like me and need the texture contrast, I highly recommend this extra step.
Step 2: Cooking the Potatoes
Potatoes take a godamn looooooooooooong time to cook. I like to pop my two medium potatoes in a small pot and submerge them with water right at the beginning of the cooking process.
Turn the heat to medium- high and let your potatoes cook while you go on to bigger and better things 🙂
Step 3: Chopping!
I have to say that I get a lot of satisfaction from this step. I hope thats not too weird. I guess it’s good that its just from chopping veggies hehe…
Go right ahead and chop up your big onion in half and dice both halves.- Set one half of it aside for a different purpose later.
Then mince your four garlic cloves, and your teaspoon of ginger, and your jalapeño pepper– you might want to chop the pepper in half first and scoop your remains into your compost bin so the terribly hot stuff doesn’t go in to your dish!
> JUST IN CASE YOU FORGOT- YOU HAVE POTATOES IN THE POT, KEEP AN EYE 😉 <
Step numero 4: Sauté fun.
Heat oil, or coconut oil, or whatever type of non- stick stuff you want to use on a medium heat on a large pan.
Once hot, (after about 2 minutes or so..) dump half your onion, your garlic, ginger and hot pepper onto the pan. Soon after add all the spices including 1 teaspoon of cumin/ coriander, 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala, 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric, and any other spices you wish to throw in there. You can throw in a bit of salt at this point too. Sauté until the spices are absorbed and the onion looks trans-lucent
Step 5: SPINACH
I know, I know. When you were like 5 every T.V show was telling you that spinach was the most disgusting thing ever. Let me tell you something. ITS THE BEST!
This is when you add your WHOLE bunch of spinach. Make sure you wash it well if it isn’t pre- washed. It might seem like it fills up the whole pan, but if you stir it slowly with your wooden spatula, it should shrink right down..
Step 6: Potofu?
If your potatoes were not finished already, they are most likely done by now.
Put your spiced spinach mix somewhere to cool and turn off your stove!
Take your potatoes– you may want to cool them a bit by washing them with cold water so you can touch them- and peel them up nice, then dice them and your tofu both 🙂
Step 7: Blending
This is possibly the most fun step. (did I already say that about slicing?.. oh well THIS is the most fun step) Blending!
Spoon in your spinach/ onion whatever mix into a blender or food processor. If it doesn’t all fit do bits at a time. It will be hard for your blender to mix up the ingredients without something wet so add liquid as needed.
You can add water, or almond milk, or both like i did 🙂 I’m sure coconut milk would be great too, but I didn’t have any. The milk might add a nice creaminess depending how much you put.
Step 8: Onions Galore!
Remember that half an onion you diced and put aside? Well fear not! We are going to give that little fella a purpose in their life (as a diced half an onion) right now 🙂
So take your pan from before (no need to wash it) And sauté the other half an onion
Step 9: Green Machine
Here is the moment to add your lovely slime into the mix once your onions are nicely cooked. You can also feel free to add in some extra hot sauce, salt, or anything else you wish to make this as satisfying to you as possible. Mix slowly and don’t let it splash in your eyes! (I made such a mistake 😦 )
Step 10: Adding the Chunks
Add in your diced tofu and potatoes into the mix, cook it for another few minutes or so and add any other finishing touches you can think of!
Step 11: EAT
I promise this is the last step! You can serve this on rice, or quinoa, or with naan, or just by itself, in a bowl or on a pate… some people even like mugs! I popped some olives next to mine to be fancy 🙂
P.S. I think i lied again. the best step is most definitely step # 11. EATING. But chopping and blending are pretty fun too. All the steps were pretty fun actually, this meal is healthy and colourful which I like 🙂
An awesome thing about this meal is that it produces TONS of leftovers which just taste better as the days go on. Very happy to have dinner for the next few days 🙂
Anyways, I guess it is about time to rate the meal!
I will give this meal a 4 out of 5 stars. Very delicious but 1/2 a point off for messiness (i got green stuff all over my kitchen…oops) and 1/2 a point off because I cried a little too much while separating one half of the onion from the other (it was too emotional, they were made for each other)
Hope you enjoyed this week’s #MeatlessMonday, please tweet @sustainableUofG with any suggestions for future dishes, or if you made your own meatless monday recipe and have a pic 🙂
See you on the flip side,