This past weekend we went up to Harbor Springs, a beautiful town in Michigan's Northwest lower peninsula that sits right on Northern Lake Michigan. We stayed with our friends Chuck & Diane. My husband Simon worked with Chuck for years and he is a mentor to Simon for all things chemical engineering and silicone. Diane and I have become good friends and share common interests in healthy food, thrift store finds, decorating, and all sorts of fun. Chuck & Diane are learning about the health benefits of a more plant based diet and seeing some great benefits. It was fun for me to share my knowledge and do a bit of cooking with them.
Here they are on the beach in Good Hart, a tiny little town half way between Harbor Springs and Cross Village on a route called the Tunnel of Trees. We enjoyed perfect weather for our drive on Saturday.
Diane was a bit worried that we wouldn't be able to eat anything at Legs which serves traditional Polish food. I told her not to worry, I am pretty much an expert at finding fairly healthy vegan food in almost any restaurant. Lo and behold, they had Vegetarian Golabkis (stuffed cabbage rolls) and 2 different kinds of Vegetarian Pierogis. Diane & I ordered Golabkis and our husbands ordered Pierogis, we all tried everything and left feeling light, healthy, and full. Success at Legs!
This picture is of Simon & me in the garden area of Legs Inn which overlooks Lake Michigan. Not a bad view for our al fresco lunch.
Diane had peeled some sweet potatoes when she thought we would have to have every meal at the house, she was going to prepare lunch before our Tunnel of Trees tour. We decided to brave the restaurant route for lunch, so we had extra sweet potatoes in the fridge. We had some beautiful yellow cauliflower and tons of other veggies from the Farmers Market.
I started getting ideas of a curry with those starting ingredients. I was picturing a curry sauce as Diane had rice milk and Penzey's Curry Powder in the house. Simon had the inspiration to oven roast the sweet potatoes and cauliflower. This is what we came up with. It was DELICIOUS!!! It made a huge batch, served all 4 of us, and they had 2 or 3 portions leftover for this week. I hope you like it.
a.k.a. Harbor Springs Farmers Market Curry
Makes 6 servings
2 medium to large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced small
1 medium sized head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
1 red onion, diced
2 medium zucchini, diced
1 bunch collard greens, sliced into small ribbons (include stems, cut into small pieces)
3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
3 cups rice milk
1 cup veggie broth
4 tablespoons corn starch
2 teaspoons salt
Cracked black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons Penzey's Curry Powder (or any curry powder/seasoning)
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 - 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1 diced fresh jalapeño or spicy green chile (optional)
Juice of 1 fresh lime
Steamed rice (2 cups rice + 4 cups water, cooked in rice cooker or pan)
4 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, to garnish
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Place diced sweet potato and cauliflower florets on baking trays lined with parchment or silicone liners.
3. Bake for 15 minutes or until fork tender and slightly browned.
4. While veggies roast in the oven, start your curry sauce. Whisk rice milk, veggie broth, pressed garlic, corn starch, salt, pepper, curry powder, turmeric, and optional red pepper flakes (if you like it hot) in a cold saucepan until well incorporated.
5. Bring sauce to a boil over medium high heat, whisking often to keep everything mixed. When the sauce boils, keep it at a low boil for 2-3 minutes to ensure any bitterness from the corn starch is cooked off. Sauce will thicken. You can turn off the heat if your sautéed veggies are not done yet.
6. In a large deep skillet, dry sauté the onion over medium high heat 3-5 minutes until it starts to brown and caramelize. You can add a bit of broth or water as needed to keep it from sticking to the pan.
7. Add zucchini and optional diced green chile (if using) and sauté 5-7 minutes until tender.
8. Add in roasted cauliflower and sweet potato and stir to incorporate and get everything nice and hot.
9. Add collard greens and sauté another 3 or 4 minutes until wilted.
10. Pour thick curry sauce into your pan of sautéed veggies. Squeeze lime juice into pan and mix well to incorporate everything.
11. Serve over cooked rice (brown rice is healthiest, but you can use whatever you have on hand) and garnish with fresh cilantro.
1. Use any curry powder or curry seasoning blend that you prefer. We used Penzey's sweet curry powder as that is what Diane had on hand.
2. At any point when dry sautéing if your veggies start to stick to the pan, just add a bit of water or veggie broth to release them. This releases the lovely browned pieces and steams your veggies a little as well. The extra liquid will cook off.
There you have it, our delicious Harbor Springs Farmers Market Curry. Feel free to substitute veggies and use whatever you have on hand from the Farmers Market, grocery store, your own garden, or whatever you need to clean out of the fridge. Curries are great for using up tons of healthy veggies.
I hope everyone is enjoying their summer. It is finally starting to feel like summer in Michigan, we got off to a very cold start. I am really enjoying the sunshine and heat.
I will be posting more often with more Farmers Market / CSA Share recipes that I create as I get my piles of veggies each week. I also want to start a little blog series about some of my favorite kitchen gadgets and I want to start doing video messages about cooking, health, and the many benefits of a plant based lifestyle.
Thanks for reading my long post. Let me know if you give the curry a try!