Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Coconut rice (p. 357), Meatloaf II (p. 512), and Lamb curry with tomato (p. 497)

Sorry regular readers! I've gone on a two month long no-posting break for some reason. I apologize and promise not to do it again! I haven't been cooking enough, especially if I hope to hit my 201 recipes in 2010. I've been desperately working on my dissertation research so I can get the heck out of school! My graduation party in May should be a great time to knock out some recipes.

I did a bunch of cooking in mid-February (all on the same day but I'm going to spread out the posts). Coconut rice (p. 357) would have been a really easy recipe if I didn't live in Colorado, where rice rarely turns out.

I brought coconut milk, water, jasmine rice, ginger, and salt to a boil in a saucepan, stirred once, covered, and cooked over low heat. I found the directions confusing--only stir the ingredients once? Doesn't that mean there will probably be big pockets of salt? I cooked it for about 25 minutes and sprinkled some toasted coconut on the top.

It was okay--I didn't really know what to eat it with. It was only mildly coconut-y until I sprinkled the toasted coconut on the top. In my opinion it was too coconut-y. I like coconut but it always reminds me of suntan lotion, which isn't very appetizing. I know someone recommended this recipe to me--what did you eat it with?

I had high hopes for Meatloaf II (p. 512) because Meatloaf I was absolutely delicious. The recipe was totally different. I mixed ground beef, horseradish, chili sauce, salt, pepper, diced bacon, chopped onions (a TON of onion), cracker crumbs (an entire cup!), and an egg with my hands (does anyone else like this part? I always think it's fun to smash the food).

I then shaped it into a loaf and rolled it in more cracker crumbs:

And poured some chicken stock in the bottom of the pan. This recipe isn't made in a loaf pan, so it's probably lower fat (the fat drains out). I baked it for about an hour and it was done:

This was a very very strange meatloaf. Josh really liked it, I wasn't as sure. The flavors were stranger, there were WAY too many onions, and the bacon didn't really crisp. I liked the crackers because I like some crisp on meatloaf. I don't see myself making this recipe again, especially when there is a delicious meatloaf recipe right above it. And there really wasn't a big enough meat:everything else ratio, so the meatloaf was crumbly. Plus I'm kind of turned-off by all that grease on the bottom of the pan.

Those of you who know me in real life know what an enormous geek I am. A huge geek. In just about every way (I don't play WoW or DnD but that's about it). I'm going to out myself to the rest of you now. I love those stupid Facebook games--MafiaWars, SororityLife, CafeWorld, etc. When I'm playing CafeWorld, I always read off what I'm "cooking" to Josh and he tells me what he would order. Recently, he's been "ordering" the lamb curry. So I thought it would be funny to make Lamb curry with tomato (p. 497). We can LARP CafeWorld!

The recipe looks so complex and is actually really simple.

The first step is to coarsely chop a 28-oz can of tomatoes, reserving the juice. Make sure you do this on a cutting board with troughs, otherwise you are going to have a HUGE mess.

The next step is to make your own curry mixture--I ground cumin, coriander, garlic, fresh ginger, turmeric, and ground red pepper in my spice grinder. It smelled delicious!

I sauteed an onion in some vegetable oil and added the spice mixture to it:

Some of the tomatoes and the tomato juice were added to the onion mixture, along with lamb stew meat.

I added the rest of the tomatoes and tomato juice:

I removed the lamb and cooked the liquid down until it was thickened. And it was done!

It was really good! It smelled absolutely amazing. My only issue with the recipe is that it really doesn't make that much--it says 4 servings but that would really be 4 small servings. It actually got even better when held overnight--the flavors melded perfectly. This would be one of those recipes that would be easy to fool around with too--it would be great with pork or turkey (or even tofu) in my opinion.

I promise I am catching up on my blogs so be sure to check back!
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  1. Yeay you made curry! And I agree with the coconut flavor (cannot do Malibu Rum, ugh). Although that rice would have typically gone well with a curry, especially of the Thai variety.

    For meatloaf I Always use cracker crumbs, how my mom makes it- yum. But for onions I now saute them before putting them into the meat mixture to keep them from overpowering (especially since I use ground turkey). Last time I also chopped them Really fine in a mini food processor, which held together better.

  2. Honestly, suntan lotion has ruined me with coconut. I remember liking it as a kid! And the rice would have been good with a thai curry--good idea!

    I will smash the crackers finer next time, that's a really good idea.

  3. My girlfriend just gave me the 75th Anniversary Joy of Cooking for my birthday and I'm trying the Meatloaf tonight!

    Great blog!


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