As Lent progresses, it's hard to cope up wth meatless dishes to feed the family. By now they're probably sick of pizza and pasta and cringe at the idea of another plate of steamed veggies, The solution is easy . Turn to eggs and fish .Both are filling alternatives for meatless dinners.
The idea comes from yesterday's New York Times Food section. Melissa Clark gives us an egg dish more exotic version of hard boiled eggs while David Tanis takes on monkfish. Ms. Clark's column, A Good Appetite focuses on ande ki kari, a recipe taken from Julie Sahni's 1980's cookbook, Classic Indian Cooking. It is hard boiled eggs with a spicy tomato sauce. It is simple enough to make. Hard boiled eggs are swimming in a sauce of contrasts,sweet and spicy , earthy and pungent. It's grated (yes, grated ) tomatoes mixed with onions sauteed in vegetable ghee, a solid vegetable shortening. Butter or olive oil can be used instead. Garlic, ginger, and cumin seeds are also added. The puree also has coriander, cumin and pepper flakes as well as black pepper for zing and pop..It should be cooked until it thickens and the fat starts to separate.In the meantime, cut eggs in half lenghtwise. At this point turn the heat on again add garam masala and the eggs. Serve with naan bread or over rice with yogurt.
Another meatless idea is monkfish. David Tanis gives an interesting spin on it in his A City Kitchen column. The fish is sometimes known as the "poor man's lobster" because of its' look and taste. The meat is a creamy white and very firmly fleshed. Any home chef can fool the family with it by passing it off as the expensive crustacean.The French call it "gigot de mer" leg of lamb from the sea. The tail is the most desirable part of it and it 's about the size of a pork roast , according to Mr. Tanis. He uses a restaurant chef;'s technique of wrapping the tail in butcher's twine, making it compact for cooking. He suggests rubbing it in extra virgin olive oil and a generous seasoning of salt and pepper. For a southern Mediterranean vibe lay the tail on a bed of thyme and rosemary branches. Tuck lemon slices and olives around it. The meat can be smeared with an easy to make olive paste. Mr Tanis puts pitted black olives, garlic, and quarter of a cup of olive oil into a food processor in a food processor and grind to a rough paste.This last can be also good on its own , slathered on crusty Italian or French bread.
Try these recipes for a different spin on a meatless Friday - or any day. They're exciting and fun for even a dinner party on a Saturday night. Meat won't be missed.Honest.