Red Rice – Rice in Tomato Juice

Remember Rice-a-Riso? It seems it is still being made and sold in supermarkets, but only in Chicken flavour. As a teenager and young adult I loved the tomato one. Imagine my surprise when I first made this dish and it tasted exactly like tomato rice-a-riso. It was a nostalgic moment.

This recipe is very simple, but because it is versatile I need to walk you through a few things first.

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Collection: Recipes with Pistachios

Pistachios are those green-tinged nuts available in large bags at your Middle Eastern grocery for a cost effective price.  Pistachio icecream is more or less well known in the West, and France has the best pistachio sorbet. Unshelled nuts, salted, are a common pre-dinner or drinks snack. But otherwise they don’t appear on our tables very much.

It is a pity, as they add colour, texture and flavour to dishes. Case in point – these nine lovely recipes.

Similar articles include Delicious Chilli Pastes and Sauces, 20 Soups for Mid Autumn, and 30 Salads for Early Spring.

Browse all of our Pistachio dishes, and all of our Collections. Or explore our Early Autumn recipes.

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Garlic Herb Potatoes

Hands up who loves potatoes? Mashed, baked, roasted – they are the basis of Winter life, really. And here is another baked potato dish. Potatoes are sliced and baked with garlic and rosemary till tender and with a crisp top. What could be more Wintery?

Similar dishes include Potato Gratin with Cream, Potato and Cheddar Gratin, and Cumin Potatoes Baked with Tomatoes.

Browse all of our Potato Bakes, and all of our Potato dishes. Or explore our Late Winter recipes.

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Broccoli with Orange-Verjuice-Butter Sauce

Sometimes retro is good, right? We make fun of the food from the 70’s and 80’s in its seemingly insane attempts to be more sophisticated. But amongst all the dishes that seem are so funny when we look back at them are some gems – let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Out of that era comes an orange sauce that pairs nicely with broccoli. I make it quickly – no French finesse here when we need to get food on the table. Good Australian Verjuice makes a delicious addition, but use white wine if you wish. Go the whole way and top the dish with toasted flaked almonds if desired – they are lovely with this dish.

I have been known to make a plate of this and eat it for lunch. It is that good. If you can get home-grown oranges, all the better. We have 2 trees and they taste so good compared to shop bought ones.

Similar dishes include Broccolini and Snow Peas with Sweet Tahini Dressing, Spicy Chickpeas with Broccoli, Sri Lankan Broccoli Curry (use broccoli in place of the okra), and Lemak Style Vegetables.

Browse our Broccoli dishes, or be inspired by our Late Winter recipes.

We use Australian measurements: 1 tspn = 5ml; 1 Tblspn = 20ml; 1 cup = 250ml.

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Indian Soup with Drumstick Leaves

We have a drumstick leaf fest going on in our house. I brought home two bunches of them when there are fewer of us here than normal, so it is drumstick leaves each day. Not that this is a problem as they are the new “super food”, although outside of India it is more likely that you will find them in a pill rather than as a delicious bag of greens in your Green Grocer’s shop.

We have had Sambar and Dal and Thoran with the leaves, and so today we are making an Indian style soup. These soups are simple, and allow the wonderful tastes and textures of the vegetables to shine through, enhanced and supported with a few spices.

Similar recipes include Moringa Leaf Thoran, Indian Pumpkin Soup, Indian Baby Corn Soup, and Indian Beetroot Soup.

Browse all of our Indian Soups and all of our Drumstick Leaf recipes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Early Autumn dishes.

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Kadhi | Yoghurt Curry

My first ever yoghurt curry experience was from a Parsi lady from India. It was a life changing experience – the creaminess of the yoghurt with the spices  is a wonderful pairing, and once you’ve had a yoghurt curry, there is no looking back. This recipe is very very simple – few spices, and not much chilli. It lets the yoghurt shine.

I recommend reading these posts before cooking with yoghurt or buttermilk:

Note that Indian Buttermilk is very different to the product called Buttermilk outside of India. Confused? Read the second of the two links above.

Browse all of our Yoghurt Curries, and all of our Yoghurt recipes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006.  You can find other recipes from that blog in the Retro Recipes series.

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Fig and Roasted Onion Salad

Mid Summer to Early Autumn are peak time for figs. Boy, do we look forward to that time. And even luckier that we have a green grocer 30 – 40 mins drive from us, who stocks figs from the first moment of ripening until the last fig of the latest fig variety falls from the tree. We make the trip if there are no local ones, to grab some and indulge (they are not cheap). Also, there is a Pick-Your-Own place we visit at least once during the season, especially if we want to make jam (fig jam is my favourite jam).

This is an Ottolenghi recipe – we have been working with all of his Salads from his book Plenty More. It pairs figs with hazelnuts, which we have used before – it’s a great pairing. He also adds the sweetness of roasted onions to the salad, and it’s a great innovation. That sweetness of the onions and figs bounces off the bitterness of the radicchio and watercress. (Add some purslane too, if you have it.) Not only does the salad look terrific, it works well flavour-wise too.

A great fig should look like it’s just about to burst its skin. When squeezed lightly it should give a little and not spring back. It must be almost unctuously sweet, soft and wet. Once you’ve managed to find a fig that meets all these criteria, I guarantee a heavenly experience. – Ottolenghi

The Salad is best made directly before serving. It makes a great entree (starter dish), and also a fantastic salad for bring a plate lunches with the girls, or BBQ family gatherings.

You might like to try some more fig recipes. Try White Fig and Rocket Salad, Figs with Blue Cheese, Baked Figs with Thyme, and Figs with Rosewater and Almonds.

Browse all of our Fig recipes, and all of our many many Salads. All of the Ottolenghi dishes that we have tried are here. Our Ottolenghi dishes from Plenty More are here. We have written about our experiences cooking through this book. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Beetroot, Avocado and Pea Salad

There is so much good stuff in this “almost superfood” salad that it makes you feel very healthy and conscientious indeed. Served as it is, it can be a very substantial meal – just scatter a few roasted hazelnuts and/or chunks of creamy goat’s cheese over the top, and you need nothing else.

Did you know that I grew up calling beetroot, red beet? That name seems to have disappeared in Australia, although a quick search on google confirms that at least some people, in some parts of the world, retain that name. I wonder if it came from my mother, whose family contained many German immigrants. Perhaps it is a European thing.

The star of this dish is indeed the blanched then quick-pickled beetroot, and its contrast with the slightly bitter pea shoots. Rather than the hour-long boil or bake, eating beetroot raw or quickly sauteed or blanched is a healthy  and very delicious alternative. The beetroot retains a bite or crunch that adds textural layers to a dish. Everything can be prepared in advance for this salad, kept in the fridge, and combined at the last moment.

This is an Ottolenghi dish from Plenty More – we are cooking our way through this book. We feel free to substitute ingredients that are not readily available in our local area.

Similar recipes include Slightly Pickled Beetroot Salad with Mustard, Beetroot and Goat Cheese Salad with Rocket, and Beetroot Salad with Honey Ginger Dressing.

Browse all of our Beetroot Salads, and all of our other Beetroot dishes. Our Avocado dishes are here. Browse all of Ottolenghi’s dishes from Plenty More. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Salted Cucumber Salad

The Danish love to salt their cucumbers, removing the water inherent in this summery vegetable and infusing the flesh with salt and lemon juice. It is a delightful dish, and interestingly it is perfectly suited to the extreme heat of Australian Summers as well as the cool Summers of those far Northern regions.

Similar recipes include Cucumber, Feta, Mint and Dill Salad, Cucumber Salad with Capers and Ricotta, and Cucumber and Red Onion Salad with Mustard.

Browse all of our Cucumber Salads, and all of our many Salads. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Amaranth Leaves Coconut Kootu

Kootu (or Koottu) is a simple, yet delicious dish that’s made in most Tamil homes in Tamil Nadu in South India.  While it can be made at any time, it is especially important during some festivals, such as Pongal.

Kootu usually includes lentils and is perhaps similar to sambar and kuzhambu, but there is a variation that is similar to Aviyal in that lentils are not used but a variety of vegetables are included. Most kootus are spiced with a coconut, cumin and red or green chillies in a paste – sometimes spices are kept to a minimum and just a coconut paste is used. We have made this one with Amaranth Leaves.

This kootu is different from the traditional Aviyal style as the mix of ingredients is different. Each Tamil home has their own style of making this kootu and the vegetables chosen also differ from home to home.

The recipe is one of Meenakshi Ammal’s from her cook books Cook and See. One of our very special projects in the kitchen is to cook through these books, as they are very traditional Tamil recipes.You can find all of Ammal’s dishes that we have made here. Most of them are from Vol 1 so far.

Similar dishes include Aviyal.

Browse all of our Kootu recipes and all of our Aviyal dishes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Early Autumn dishes.

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