Friday, April 06, 2007

Empty Pantry Gourmet

So, today was unusual to say the least, and stressful, and very very scary. (For the record, I am OK...if I know you, you already know what happened; if I don't know you, it's not your business.) And all that I wanted to do (once I found out that everyone else was OK too) was come home and hang with my dog. (Kabs, thank you for the pizza offer...but I wasn't in the mood for crowds.)

And the no-mood-for-crowds extended to the grocery store and the pre-Easter ham-buyers. And the Friday beer-buyers, and the other grocery-buyers. So, despite the fact that I had no food at home, I decided to make dinner.

The recipe (as it were):
1 cup dried split peas
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons garlic-flavored olive oil (or 2 T olive oil and 3 cloves of garlic, chopped)
1 T garam masala (see note at end)
juice of 1 lemon

Rinse the peas and put in a large microwave-safe bowl. Cover with water and microwave for 5 minutes. (Peas will not be tender.) In a medium pot with lid, saute the onion and garam masala (and garlic if using) in the oil. Drain the microwaved peas and add to the pot with about 4 cups water. Cover and simmer until peas are tender, about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. You may also need to add a little more water. Add the lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.

Notes: I always customize my garam masala...this time I added 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon and about 1/4 tsp ginger. (What you choose to add depends on the brand that you buy as well as personal preference...sometimes I add a pinch of cardamom or a little cayenne pepper.)

And if this weren't empty pantry gourmet, this would be great with some chopped carrots, potatoes, or cauliflower. Add them after the peas have simmered for about 15 minutes.

No pic (looks really gross) but really tasty!