Tandoori Spiced Taro Root "Fries"

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Recently, I've been hooked on taro root. Upon most of my visits to the Asian supermarket, the humble root always seems to make it into my shopping basket. Maybe that's because there's always such a large display in the produce section being a conspicuous root itself -- and large in size and hard to miss, it raises a certain level of curiosity. It's a 'curious' vegetable one could say!

As I was rummaging through the taro root pile in the Asian store last week, a curious woman asked me why I was buying it (meaning, what was I planning on doing with it!). She didn't know what it was or how to cook with it, so I explained I was making taro 'fries", cooking it just like a potato.

I actually didn't realize taro root is native to India (and parts of Southeast Asia), but recall seeing it in the markets in South India, as pictured below. Taro has a beautiful nutty flavour, a soft, creamy texture and takes in flavour quite nicely. I selected Arvinda's Tandoori Masala to add a bite of heat and fantastic spice flavour.

I discovered the taro root is high in fiber, lowers blood sugar levels and is high in vitamin C. Prepare the taro root by peeling it, chopping it and boiling it - just like a potato! Easy.

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TANDOORI SPICED TARO ROOT "FRIES"

Ingredients:
1 LB. taro root, cooked and julienned
1-2 TBSP. oil
1 TSBP. ARVINDA'S TANDOORI MASALA
2 TBSP. cilantro, finely chopped, to garnish
sea salt, to garnish

 

Method of Preparation:

1) Heat oil on medium-high heat. Add ARVINDA'S TANDOORI MASALA and blend well.

2) Add cooked taro "fries", coat well and cook for a few minutes until crispy.

3) Garnish with cilantro and sea salt.

Curried Cranberry & Almond Quinoa

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Many people these days will be happy to see quinoa on a holiday table. Being gluten-free, high in protein and named a superfood, all your guests will welcome a bit of quinao for a festive dinner.

The curry powder gently scents the dish, offering a beautiful golden hue, while the cranberries offer a sweet and tart bite, with the almonds lending a nice crunch. 


CURRIED CRANBERRY & ALMOND QUINOA

Method of Preparation:

1) Add quinoa to a pot with water and salt. Boil until water is absorbed.

2) In a separate pot, heat olive oil on medium-low heat. Add onions and saute for a couple of minutes. Add spinach and cook until wilted.

3) Fold in quinoa and ARVINDA'S CURRY POWDER. Fold in dried cranberries and sliced almonds.

I wrote this recipe to serve 2-4, so it would be suitable for everyday lunches or dinners. Double or triple the recipe if you’re serving a larger crowd.

Ingredients:
¼ CUP quinoa, rinsed in several changes of water
2 CUPS water
½ TSP. salt
2 TSP. olive oil
1 CUP spinach, finely chopped
½ small red onion, chopped
1 TSP. ARVINDA'S CURRY POWDER
¼ CUP dried cranberries
¼ CUP sliced almonds

CURRIED MASHED SWEET POTATOES

Add more fibre to your diet by subbing out potatoes for sweet potatoes. Rather than mashed potatoes, this side will be on our holiday table this season! It's sweet and delightful with a hint of curry spices.

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CURRIED MASHED SWEET POTATOES

Method of Preparation:

1) In a pressure cooker, add sweet potatoes, potatoes and salt. Cover with water and cook for 10 minutes until they are tender enough to mash. (If you don’t own a pressure cooker, boil on stovetop – this should take around 20 minutes).

2) Drain water. Using a potato masher (or fork) mash sweet potatoes and potatoes.

3) In a large skillet, melt ghee on medium heat. Add ARVINDA'S CURRY MASALA and mix. Fold in mashed sweet potatoes and potatoes and coat with masala. Fold in heavy cream.

4) Serve in a bowl and garnish with ARVINDA'S GARAM MASALA. Serves 2-4.

Ingredients:
1 LB. sweet potatoes (4 small), peeled and cubed
½ LB. potatoes (2 medium), peeled and cubed
1 TSP. salt
2 TBSP. ghee or butter
1-2 TBSP. ARVINDA'S CURRY MASALA
1/8 CUP heavy cream
sea salt, to taste
¼ TSP. ARVINDA's GARAM MASALA , to garnish

Curried Oven Roasted Potato Wedges

Sometimes I get a craving for something spicy, satiating and potato-like! After deciding it's a better choice to skip the deep-fried snacks, I opt to make these oven roasted crispy curried potato wedges that could also be a tasty side for a meal.

Sweet potatoes are equally suitable for this recipe. Serves well with a yogurt condiment.

Make sure you bake these until crispy - and you'll be well sastified with this choice!


CURRIED OVEN ROASTED POTATO WEDGES

Method of Preparation: 

1) In a pot, add potatoes, 1 tsp. salt and cover with water. Parboil potatoes for 7-10 minutes. Drain. (Potatoes should be slightly firm).

2) Preheat oven to 450F and line a baking sheet with foil. Dip: In a small bowl, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, ARVINDA'S GARAM MASALA, sea salt and crushed garlic. Mix well.

In a medium bowl, mix together olive oil and ARVINDA'S CURRY MASALA. Coat parboiled potatoes with mixture. Arrange coated potato wedges on baking sheet. Bake in oven for 15 minutes. Turn wedges over and bake for another 5 minutes. Garnish with sea salt. Serve with dip. Serves 2.

Ingredients:
1 LB. potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
1 TSP. salt
2 TBSP. olive oil
1 TSP. ARVINDA'S CURRY MASALA (add 2 tsp. for hotter)
sea salt, to garnish

Arvinda’s Garam Masala Yogurt Garlic Dip
1/4 CUP yogurt
1/4 CUP mayonnaise
1/4 TSP. ARVINDA'S GARAM MASALA
1/4 TSP. sea salt
1-2 garlic cloves, crushed