One Hot Dish for a Hot Day

Island Epicure


A quick curry supplies fuel for summer activities without heating up the kitchen and the cook while preparing it. The theory in Thailand and in the warmest provinces in China is that a spicy dish that makes you sweat has the net effect of helping you stay reasonably cool. If that doesn’t work, follow it with chilled watermelon.
Here’s one from my little cookbook, Shereluck Ohlmes & the Case of the Curried Cookbook. It is a humorous book you’ll enjoy for the reading of it, and the recipes are great. You can get it at Vashon Bookshop, or from me, or online from Twice Sold Tales,

Hurried Curry
4 Servings
½ cup milk
1 can (10 ½ ounce) Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup
2 Tablespoons curry powder
2 cups diced cooked meat: chicken, ham, or lamb and/or quartered hard-boiled eggs or butter-fried mushrooms
½ cup thinly sliced green onions
½ cup minced parsley, optional

If you put all these except the green onions and prsley together and warm them and they still don’t look like enough for your particular four appetites, serve it over steamed brown rice, croutons, or diced toast. Garnish with the green stuff.
We like a homemade chutney with any curry. Whipped up in a few minutes, it will keep in your refrigerator or freezer almost indefinitely, preserved by the cloves and cinnamon in it, so make enough for more than one curry meal.

Apple-Cranberry Chutney
Makes about 3 cups
4 large apples, peeled and diced
1 lemon, seeded and sliced
½ cup dried cranberries
1 inch ginger root, minced
6 to 10 whole cloves or 1/3 teaspoon ground cloves
1 Tablespoon broken up cinnamon bark
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup cider vinegar

Cook covered on low heat 15 to 20 minutes. Apples should be tender but still retain some shape. Stir in: Up to ½ cup raw honey (to taste)
Ladle into sterilized container/s. To store, leave 1 inch at top. Store in refrigerator one up to one month or freeze.

Plum or Nectarine Chutney
Makes 1 ½ cups
Stir-fry 10 minutes:
1 ½ Tablespoons Ghee* or butter
½ medium onion, chopped or sliced
1 green chili peppers, seeded and minced

8 plums or nectarines cut from seeds
2 Tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 Tablespoons white sugar or Splenda®

Stir-cook until plum are tender and paler, about 10 minutes. Cover. Simmer very slowly stirring occasionally until the chutney thickens. Ladle into a sterilized container. Cover and refrigerate.
Yogurt on the side cools the mouth after bites of spicy curry.
*Ghee:  Clarified butter. Cook butter gently until the milk in it separates from the oily part. Pour the oily part into a small jar, leaving the white solids in the pan. Cover the jar. Ghee need not be refrigerated.