Nasturtium Leaf Curry | Kitchen Witch
There is an affectionately scribbled list of plants in my mind, that – seen in no particular order but close enough to each other -means I’m home. Eucalyptus, jacaranda, flame tree, frangipani, bottlebrush, morton bay fig, lemon, paper-bark tree and the bright welcome of the nasturtium plant.
Taking a long summer break with my family in Australia can feel like swimming in the water of my soul, pouring time back into what feels most like myself – foraging and walking, taking in the world step-by-step instead of racing by in a car.
The delicate, peppery nasturtium leaves, huddled by the glowing blooms that seem only to be found while wandering back lanes hemmed with dry grasses and over-hanging mulberry trees, are a dream. When picking nasturtiums, use an empty hat instead of a bag to keep the petals from bruising. Nasturtium is a genus of roughly 80 species of annual and perennial herbaceous flowering plants, which are edible.
2 green cardamom pods
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp coriander seeds
Toast in a dry pan on low until fragrant, about two minutes
Nasturtium Leaf Curry Paste (4 servings)
2 shallots, minced
3 dates, pitted and minced
1 tbsp ginger, grated
4 tbsp lemongrass, white stalk only, grated
3 cilantro roots, minced
3 makrut lime leaves, finely sliced
1 green birds eye chili, seeds removed, minced
1 tbsp nasturtium leaves, torn
juice of 1 lime, lime peels reserved
2-3 big pinches of salt
Add to food processor along with toasted dry spices. Process until very smooth, makes about 1 cup
Around this time, throw on 1 cup of brown or white jasmine rice (serves 2). Prepare according to package.
Prepare the Curry
4 small Japanese/Thai eggplants
1 ripe pineapple, cut into chunks
1 cup organic non GMO firm tofu, cut into chunks
1 stalk lemongrass, cut lengthwise and bruised with the blunt of the knife
1 makrut lime leaf (1 tsp lime zest substitute)
lime peels from one lime
2 cans of organic coconut milk
2 tbsp neutral oil (unrefined coconut oil)
salt/tamari to taste
Slice the eggplant lengthwise and chop on the diagonal into bite-size chunks. Salt generously and set aside for 20 minutes. Rinse off the salt and pat dry.
In a saucepan on medium heat, add 2 tbsp neutral oil, add 1/4 prepared curry paste and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly
Add eggplant, pineapple, tofu, kaffir lime leaf, lemongrass stalk, let the flavors mingle for a few minutes then add your coconut milk and simmer on low for 10 minutes. Serve with rice, finely shredded makrut lime leaf or lime zest.