In semi-honor and congratulations to Oscar-winning Best Picture of the year, Slumdog Millionaire, I offer you an Indian-inspired vegetarian meal. It was another one of those recipe ideas I've had kicking around in the old noggin for a few weeks. The timing of its creation was meant to be, I also came across a recipe at Williams-Sonoma in a new Essentials of Asian Cooking cookbook that was on display and opened to a recipe for a curried chick pea dish. Once more I've broken down a recipe and simplified it, amped it up and used a few of my own tricks of the trade! Ellie Krieger, eat your healthy heart out! Here is another use for pumpkin, another protein perfect vegetarian dish and another ethnic inspired meal for all of us to add to our repertoires. It's low-fat, packed full of veggies and naturally Weight Watcher Friendly, my favorite cooking style. Serve over couscous or brown jasmine or basmati rice.
- 1 Tablespoon Canola, Vegetable or Mild Olive Oil
- 1 Medium Onion - finely diced or minced
- 1 Medium Carrot - finely grated/shredded
- 3 Garlic Cloves - finely minced
- 2 Tablespoons Curry Powder - hot or mild, use more or less to taste
- 1- 16 ounce can Chick Peas/Garbanzo/Ceci Beans - drained and rinsed
- 1 & 1/2 Cups Cold Water
- 1 Cup Pumpkin Puree
- 1 Cup Frozen Chopped Spinach
- Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper - to taste
- 1/4 Cup Toasted Pumpkin Seeds - for garnish (optional)
- Heat the oil in a 3 or 4 quart sauce pot over medium-high heat until the oil begins to shimmer.
- Saute the onions until the begin to turn translucent, about 3 minutes.
- Add the grated carrots to the onions and saute until the carrots begin to release their juices and the onions are beginning to turn golden, about another 3-5 minutes.
- Add in the garlic and curry powder and saute for another 30 seconds.
- Next, stir in the chick peas, water and pumpkin puree, stirring to incorporate. Season lightly with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and bring the mixture to a simmer; cook for 10 minutes.
- Add in the frozen chopped spinach, stir to combine and cook for another 10 minutes.
- Season to taste with additional salt, pepper and/or toasted curry powder.
- Garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds if desired. Serve over couscous or a whole grain brown rice.