Roasted Vegetables with Red Curry and Coconut Sauce

For some reason, I have recently been reminded of my age at every turn.  In epidemiology class, we were presented with statistics about birth problems related to women over 30 (I’m 27, unmarried, and just don’t see a pregnancy on the horizon…even though every little child I see sends me into “wannabe mommy” mode).  When filling out paperwork, I have to think for several seconds before remembering just what my age is.  And at my annual exam, my healthcare provider told me that I was really getting to the age where I need to be doing my monthly breast exams.  I’ve never been told that before!  I’m investing in more high-quality skincare potions and thinking about when I’ll be ready to take the leap and buy my own house (hint: not anytime soon).  The truth is, that I just thought that I’d have more things figured out by now.

On the bright side, I’m learning to love certain foods that my childhood self would have cringed at.  I now consider olives to be a treat and, just in the last few months, I’ve begun to reconsider the eggplant.  Once a completely unwelcome guest at my table, eggplants are showing up in more and more of my dishes.  It started with my ratatouille and continues with these thai-inspired vegetables.  Of course, the dish is completely malleable to your personal tastes.  If you don’t like eggplant, choose another vegetable you do like or need to clear out of the fridge!  If you’re on the fence about eggplant, give it a try…you may be able to coax out your inner eggplant love!

What foods have you learned to love since childhood?  

Roasted Vegetables with Red Curry and Coconut Sauce
makes 2 servings
adapted from Love and Lemons 

Sauce Ingredients
– 1 Tbsp red curry paste
– 1 Tbsp white miso paste
– 1 Tbsp honey
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– 1/4 cup coconut milk (the kind from the can)
– salt and pepper to taste

Vegetables
– 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
– 1 small eggplant, quartered and cut into 1/2-in pieces
– 1 bell pepper, sliced
– a few handfuls spinach, washed and dried

– cooked rice or quinoa to serve

Preheat oven to 400F.

Prepare the sauce.  Mix all sauce ingredients together except for coconut milk, set aside.  You will use some to cook the vegetable in and some will be reserved to complete the sauce.

In a large bowl, toss prepared onion, eggplant, and bell pepper with about 1/2 of the sauce.  Mix until vegetables are coated.  Spread vegetables on a baking sheet and bake for 10-20 minutes, stirring about halfway through, until they are soft and beginning to brown.  Remove from oven and pour into a large bowl.

Place the spinach in the same pan the vegetables were just removed from.  Put in the oven for 2-4 minutes, until wilted.  Add to the bowl with the other vegetables.

Complete the sauce by whisking the coconut milk into the reserved half of the miso-curry mixture.  Pour over the vegetables and stir well.  Serve hot over rice or quinoa.

* I submitted this post to this week’s Fresh Bites Friday, Fight Back Friday, Foodie Friday, and Wellness Weekend.

Savory Mung Bean Pancakes with Miso-Tahini Kale

When I go to the grocery store, I am usually very good about keeping to my list.  Impulse purchases tend to languish in my pantry until their expiration date has passed.  Or, if the impulse purchase happens to be a box of Oreos, it will be gobbled up in a matter of days and ruin my appetite for all the healthy meals I had planned.  So, for me, the shopping list is a must.

Yesterday, though, I came across an intriguing item that I decided I had to try.


(Source)

For the record, I have no idea of why I decided I needed some sprouted mung beans.  I didn’t know anything about how to use them except for what I had learned from Creed in “The Office”.  When I got home, I began an internet search to learn about what to do with these little legumes and I found the perfect solution at Choosing Raw.  And so this morning, I had an extremely satisfying (and tasty!) breakfast, which I think will be first of many forays into the world of mung beans.

P.S. I think this would make a great lunch or dinner, too!

Savory Mung Bean Pancakes with Miso Tahini-Kale
adapted from Gena’s recipe
serves 2

For the pancakes:

Ingredients

– 1/2 cup sprouted mung beans (you can use regular mung beans as well, but follow cooking directions on package prior to making pancakes)
– 2/3 cups water
– 1/4 cups chickpea flour
– 1/4 cup brown rice flour
– 1/2 tsp baking soda
– 1 tsp tamari or soy sauce
– 1/4 tsp sesame oil
– 1 tsp agave syrup or brown rice syrup
– 1/2 shallot, minced (about 1 Tbs)
– 1/2 tsp sea salt
– oil of choice or butter, for the pan (I used olive oil.)

1. In a small saucepan, bing a few cups of water to a boil.  Add the mung beans and boil for about 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for another 8-10 minutes.  (If you are using regular, unsprouted mung beans, skip this step and just follow the cooking directions on the package.)

2. Place mung beans, flours, water, and baking soda in the blender.  Blend until very smooth.  Consistency should be thick but pourable.

3. In a large bowl, combine mung bean batter and remaining ingredients.  Mix until well combined.  (You can store this in the refrigerator overnight.)

4. Heat oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat.  Drop the batter by spoonfuls into the pan, with each pancake containing about 2 large spoonfuls of batter.  Cook until you see bubbles on the top side of the pancakes and then flip.  Cook on the other side until golden brown.  Serve warm with miso-tahini kale.

For the Miso-Tahini Kale

Ingredients:

– 1/2 cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced
– 2 cups lacinato kale, de-stemmed and cut into bite-sized pieces
– 2 tsp tamari or soy sauce
– 1 Tbs tahini
– 2 tsp white (or yellow) miso paste

1. In a large sauce pan, heat a few tablespoons of water.  Add mushrooms and soy sauce and cook until mushrooms are softened.  If all the water evaporates from the pan, just go ahead and add a few extra tablespoons.

2. Add the kale and cook until slightly wilted.  Add tahini and miso paste and stir to combine.  Serve warm with pancakes.

*This post is included in this week’s Real Food 101 and Ruth’s Real food, Melt in Your Mouth Monday at Make-Ahead Meals for Busy Moms, Monday Mania at the Healthy Home Economist, Ingredient Challenge Monday at And Love it Too!, and the Weekend Gourmet Blog Carnival at Hartke is Online.