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And now this little exploration into cabbage can end the way it started, with my awesome Mama-Bear-In-Law.  A few weeks ago, she inspired me to post several cabbage recipes and now I’m finishing up my head of cabbage with an Indian meal.

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My fireman went down to the Bay to run a marathon (He kicked butt and won his age division!) and to take his Mama on a date in The City, but the two of them were kind enough to spend some time to picking out some fresh veggies for me at their local farmer’s market.  It’s such a treat to have farmer’s market goodies, as it’s far to snowy to have a year-round farmers market up here in Tahoe.

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This dinner is surprisingly American at its root, it’s braised chicken with rice and a vegetable.  The spices in this meal are simple and more warming than they are spicy, making it a good dish for a someone who is wary of Indian cuisine or for someone who doesn’t have a whole cabinet of Indian spices! (Yet)

Simple Indian Braised Chicken

Serves 3 – total meal cost approx $1.51 per serving

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced ($.09)
  • 1 Tbs ginger, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbs coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 pinch smoked paprika
  • salt – to taste
  • 3 chicken thighs ($1.30)
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, leaves and stems thinly sliced ($1.50)
  • 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock

Begin by heating up the vegetable oil over medium high heat in a large saute pan.  Saute the onions until golden and translucent, 3-5 minutes, next add in the ginger, garlic, coriander and dry spices and saute 2 minutes more.

Heating the spices helps to open up their flavors.

Heating the spices helps to open up their flavors.

Season the chicken thighs and then brown them on both sides in the pan with the onions and spices.  Add in the Swiss chard to saute, one handful at a time (just because it won’t all fit, if you have a big enough pan, feel free to add it all at once).  Lastly, add in the stock and bring to a simmer.  Cover the pan and let braise for 30 minutes, stirring the mixture and turning the chicken a few times during this process.  Check the seasonings, adding salt if necessary, and enjoy!

Cabbage with Mustard Seeds

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbs vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 serrano chili, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 head of cabbage, cut into 1″ pieces ($.64)
  • salt – to taste
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, roughly chopped

Heat the vegetable oil in over high heat, when the oil is nice and hot, add in the mustard seeds and cover.  In a minute or so, you should hear popping, similar to making popcorn, once the popping starts, add in the serrano chili and turmeric.  Saute 1 minute.  Next, add in the cabbage and saute about 3 minutes, add some salt.  Add in 1/4 cup of water and cover the dish, cook covered for 5 minutes, or until fully cooked.  Take off the heat and stir in the cilantro.  Now crack yourself an IPA and dig in!

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Fun Fact!  India Pale Ale was developed during the English occupation of India.  In order to get the soldiers their ale, the English brewers had to add a whole bunch of hops as a preservative (and as a flavoring) so that the beer wouldn’t spoil on the long trip to India.

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