SPICE IT UPDuring winter our favourite foods are those slow cooked casseroles, but you may not have realised that curries, are in fact a form of slow cooked casserole.
The main difference is that they’re usually got a lot more spices in them and they aren’t necessarily spicey hot.
Let’s find out..
Ian’s tip is “You can actually start to make a curry by making a sweet spice blend.” Curries need not always be hot as in bitey hot
- Start with cinnamon, add, allspice, cloves, ground coriander seed.
- Then add turmeric and cummin, paprika, some chilli (a little or a lot).
- And this is basically a madras style curry.
- When all these are blended together, you can't go wrong.
- If you're wondering what proportions, first smell the individual spices.
- If they smell strong, such as ground cloves, then add only a small portion.
- You can also add some dried curry leaves from your curry tree-fry some until they're crispy and save to use as a garnish after cooking.Murraya koenigii
The trick is balance of flavours. One thing is to not overdo the cloves, pepper and chilli.
- Another tip is roasting spices is not always necessary, particularly if you’re making a vegetable curry.
- If you'r curry blend is a little too hot for your liking, you can tone it down by stirring some greek yoghurt through it.
O 2rrr PO Box 644 Gladesville NSW 1675
- What is Coriander ? Is Coriander really Cilantro or is that just what Americans call it?
Cilantro refers to the leaves of the plant and coriander refers to the seeds.
- So coriander leaf is nothing else but cilantro.
- Coriander flowers belong in the Apiaceae or carrot family, where Parsley, dill and carrots belong.
Did you know that about half a litre of coriander seeds were found in the tomb of Tutankhamen?
Because this plant doesn’t grow wild in Egypt, this suggests that coriander was grown in the gardens of ancient Egyptians.
The Chinese once believed it gave you immortality and in the Middle ages it was used as part of a love potions.
- Coriander is an annual herb because it flowers, sets seed then dies in under a year..
Heaps of Coriander seeds are used in curries, tagines and many other Asian dishes.
In fact the whole herb, including the roots can be ground up to make Green Curry paste.
I just mash it up in a food processor when I make that paste.
Now here’s a big tip:
- Always grow coriander from seed, sown in the exact spot you want it to grow as it absolutely HATES being transplanted.
- Transplanting coriander stresses it so that it goes straight to seed and then it dies. And you never get any leaves at all!
- Coriander gets a has a big taproot as it grows so growing it in a pot won’t work either, it’ll go straight to seed as well.,
TO GROW IT FROM SEED..
For sub-tropical and arid zones, you have August to September;
Temperate districts, sow the seeds from September until the end of November,
Cool temperate zones, October to November,
- Sow your seeds about 1 cm deep, cover them and keep them moist.Whether or not you sow them in rows, scatter them amongst your other veggies, or use them to grow as a shade plant for your lettuce, it really doesn’t matter.
- Coriander takes a couple of weeks to germinate, so go do it after my program.
- Coriander grow fairly big, about 50 cm or 2 feet tall.
Big Tip: Grasshoppers don’t like coriander, so plant it around the spinach to stop the grasshoppers eating holes in the leaves.
- You want about 5 cm between the plants if you grow it for the leaves..
- When your plants is big enough, take the leaves off from the base of the plant. Just make sure the plant is big enough to cope and leave some leaves on it so it can continue to grow.
- As soon as that flower stalk appears, your coriander plant stops making more leaves.
- Just remember when coriander plants get stressed, or in hot weather, or once they reach a certain age, they stop making leaves and instead start growing a tall flower stalk.
Keep watering and feeding your coriander plants well, and wait for the flower to develop and set seeds.
In hot weather this may take as little as 4 - 6 weeks from when you first put the seed in the ground.
Storing Coriander or Cilantro
Why Is It Good For You?
Coriander contains no cholesterol; but is rich in anti-oxidants and dietary fibre which help reduce LDL or "bad cholesterol" while increasing HDL or "good cholesterol" levels.
The herb is a good source of minerals like potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, and magnesium.
It’s also rich in many vital vitamins like folic-acid, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin- A, beta carotene, vitamin-C that are essential for optimum health. Coriander leaves provides 30% of daily recommended levels of vitamin-C.
Coriander is one of the richest herbal sources for vitamin K
THAT WAS YOUR VEGETABLE HERO FOR TODAY