Friday, 7 February 2014

Redish Redish

I stepped outside Stepford Valley and my pulse quickened. It was the allure of the fluorescent strip lights and lurid packaging that made me giddy, the promise of five pommegranates for a pound having tempted over the threshold. Restraint is not really my thing, but I escaped with just plantain, fine Turkish pastry, an impressively fresh looking naan bread, a psueudo Bombay mix (but with zero cholesterol, apparently) and the pomegranates.

Choosing the bread was no mean feat - I could have gone for fresh pitta, a bread that would have doubled as a table cloth or the naan. For some reason I don't find making naan as comforting and satisfying as pitta nor my result so spectacular so naan it was.

I have recently bought some dried shrimp so along with the plantain I was inspired by the delicious Ghanaian stew red red. Admittedly the dried shrimp is non essential but the red palm oil and black eyed beans are, neither of which I had, so any resemblance is purely fleeting.

Redish Redish recipe

1 can chickpeas
1 can kidney beans
1 can tomatoes / a spoon of concentrated tomato puree, some decent veg stock and a small carton of passata (that is what I had, but a can of tomatoes sounds less random and the effect will be very similar).
1 medium onion, finely sliced
1 desert spoon dried shrimp (optional)
1 teaspoon paprika
1 large pinch cayenne
1 teaspoon cinnamon (I love the sweet richness it brings)
1/2 inch of fresh ginger
1/2 a sweet pepper (red, orange or yellow)
1/2 lt veg stock


Start by sweating the onions in a pan, meanwhile blitz the spices, sweet pepper, dried shrimp and a little of the stock into a paste. When the onions are soft and almost translucent add the spice paste. turn up and cook for a minute of so, tasking care that is does not catch.

Next add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 10 mins. Slice and fry the plantain and serve with flat bread. Enjoy!