Oct 6, 2011

Chickpea curry a la garbage

This is a variety of dish that I call a garbage curry. It is a one pan, one rice-cooker recipe which makes for fast work and easy clean-up. The recipe below shows what I had on hand tonight, but it is meant to help clean out the bits and pieces so it will vary each time I cook it.

Today I was lucky, I had the last eggplant and a couple of tomatoes from the garden. The tomatoes were about to get too ripe, so they had to be used right away.


  • Rice cooker
  • High-sided skillet or large saucepan
  • Wooden spoon
  • Cutting board
  • Knife (I use a Chinese cleaver which I will post about another time.)
  • Small saucepan
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 small onion
  • 1/2 medium eggplant
  • 2 small tomatoes
  • 1 cup cooked (or canned) chickpeas
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1 cup vegetable stock or water
  • Olive oil 
  • Salt
  1. Slice the eggplant into rounds and each round into quarters, early in the day.
  2. Put the eggplant into a bowl, salt it lightly, and cover it.
  3. When it's dinner time, drain the liquid from the bowl.
  4. Put the rice and stock into the rice cooker and start it. (I like to add a little turmeric to the rice for color, odor, and flavor.)
  5. Put the skillet or large saucepan on the burner set to between Medium Low and Medium.
  6. Add about two tbs or a couple of glugs of olive oil.
  7. Smash and mince the garlic. 
  8. Toss it in the skillet.
  9. Mince the onion.
  10. Toss it in the skillet.
  11. Stir a bit.
  12. Put the eggplant in the skillet.
  13. Stir occasionally until it starts to darken
  14. Core the tomatoes and chop them.
  15. Toss them in the skillet.
  16. Stir.
  17. Stir in the curry powder.
  18. Stir in the chickpeas.
  19. Add 1/4 cup of water.
  20. Cover and reduce heat to Barely Simmer.
  21. When the rice is done check the skillet. If it is too liquid let it continue to cook uncovered until it thickens.
  22. Put rice on plate.
  23. Put curry on top of the rice.
  24. Add a dollop of mango chutney if you want.
I like my food spicy so you may want to experiment with the amount of curry. I purposely left out of this recipe that I also add about 1/4 tsp of cayenne powder or crush a dried bird pepper into it to increase the heat.

ETA (Edited To Add)
Oh dear, I forgot to mention the use for the small saucepan. It sits on the counter near the cutting board and all of the vegetable trimmings and leftover pieces go into it. then I add some filtered water and put it on a burner set to Barely Simmer for a day or two then use the resulting stock for rice or soup. Don't use tomato, eggplant, or bell pepper stems for this. But scrag ends and other bits and pieces are fine. Carrot greens and radish greens can go into this pot, but, as I'll tell you later, there are better ways to use them.

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