Wednesday, August 19, 2015

When I happened upon this recipe, my mind instantly filled with salt water taffy, the gulf air, and amazing seafood.  This dish is none of those things actually.  The only Kheema I'd ever known is just a homophone (Kemah, the boardwalk town outside of Houston). I assure you, this Kheema is just as good. :)

This delectable spiced dish from South Asia is pure warmth.  It can be served over rice, used as a filling for samosas or naan.  It is very versatile while capturing the intense spice profiles of India so nicely.  The Hinkley household enjoyed this dish with as stack of home made chapatis, much like Aarti did as a child.  Highly recommended!

This version from Aarti's cookbook is made with beef, since it is more readily available to us in the US.  Traditionally this is a lamb or mutton curry, as in the Hindu culture, beef is not eaten.  I made the version to stay true to the cookbook, but look forward to trying the lamb version as well.

For this Kheema recipe, you will need:
3 TBSP sunflower oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced finely
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
2 TSP ground coriander
1 TSP paprika
1/2 TSP garam masala
1/2 TSP ground cumin
1/4 to 1/2 TSP cayenne (depending on how much heat you like)
1 pound ground beef
2 medium ripe tomatoes, chopped (or 1 drained can of diced fire roasted tomatoes)
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 TSP malt vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Start with a skillet.  Add oil and heat until oil shimmers (med-high heat).

First you will add the onion, and stir until they soften and turn golden brown.  The book recommends around 5 minutes, but mine took closer to 10, so use your best judgement.

Next you are going to add the spices: coriander, paprika, garam masala, and cumin.  You will stir these in and keep stirring so they won't burn.  If they stay still to long, they *will* burn and your whole dish will taste burnt. (not that this happened to me..) Warm the spices whilst stirring for about 30 seconds.

Now we add the beef.  Like any ground beef dish, break up the chunks with a spoon, and completely brown.

Once the beef is browned entirely, add the tomatoes and water.  Here is when you can also season with salt and pepper.  Partially cover and simmer for ten minutes.

Next step, stir in the frozen peas and let those simmer in the mixture for another 5 minutes

Now you are ready for the final step.  Add the vinegar and stir all together.  Top with cilantro and serve.

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