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one pot wonders

simple and diverse recipes for spring

one pot wonders
therese degrasse

During spring there is nothing more satisfying than a hearty bowl of goodness to offer sustenance and a reprieve from our unpredictable, unreliable and sometimes unbearable weather. 

Meals that can be balanced and created in one pot can be a godsend on busy days when little time permits. The recipes below are simple, diverse and freeze well.  I have paired them with a few of my top picks for wines in the region.

Dhal Stew

Yields: 4 portions

1/3 cup olive oil
1 medium red onion, finely minced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp ginger, finely minced
8 cups vegetable broth (have extra on hand if needed)
1 cup dry red lentils
2 cups cooked brown lentils
1 tbsp each: coriander, turmeric, and yellow curry
1 tsp garam Masala
3 cardamom pots
1/2 tsp each: cayenne & cinnamon
1/2 cup tomato paste
1 cup peas
1 cup grated carrot
Salt to taste

Optional Garnishes:

Apple Chutney, Dill Yogurt, Fresh tomato, Fresh Coriander

In a stockpot over medium heat lightly saute onion, garlic and ginger until lightly browned. Reduce heat and add all spices, cook for 5 minutes stirring constantly. Add vegetable stock, lentils and tomato paste. Bring to a boil and add peas and carrots. Simmer for 45 minutes. Make sure you stir frequently so lentils do not stick to the bottom of the pot. Dhal Stew tastes best when served the next day, serve with warm Naan Bread or Poppadums.

Tips: Feel free to add additional spices and chilies to this recipe if a spicier Dhal Stew suits your pallet. If you prefer a thick stew reduce the amount of broth when cooking, if you like a stew that is more of a loose consistency increase the amount of broth when cooking.

Wine Pairing:

Rosewood Estate Winery
Trois Femee Rose,’2013

Mexican Inspired Pepper Pot Soup

This soup is rich enough to be served as a meal on its own. Serve a medley of the garnishes listed below so that your guests can customize their bowl of goodness to their specific taste.

4 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic puree
1 medium diced onion
2 jalapenos, chopped and seeds removed
2 stalks finely minced celery
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1/3 tsp ground chili powder
1/2 tsp ground Ancho chili powder
2 cups cooked kidney beans
2 cups cooked chickpeas
2 cans Blue Menu-no salt added whole tomatoes
1 tsp chipotle puree
Juice of 3 limes and the zest of one
3 cups of water-plus additional to adjust consistency
3 cups grated aged cheddar
1 cup sour cream (extra for garnish)

Heat olive oil in a stockpot over medium heat; add garlic, onions, jalapenos and celery. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add in all dry spices stirring frequently for 1 minute. After the spices are incorporated add beans, tomatoes, chipotle, lime zest/juice and water. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for an hour. After simmering, puree soup until smooth, slowly incorporate sour cream and cheddar. Add water to adjust thickness of soup according to taste. Season with salt, reheat and serve.

Garnishes: Aged cheddar, hot sauce, Pico de Gallo, toasted tortilla crisps, lime wedges, pulled pork, sour cream, lime-poached shrimp, salsa, hot peppers, fresh cilantro, shredded lettuce, toasted corn.

Wine Pairing:

Fielding Estate Winery, Brut

Toasted Barley Risotto

Yields: 4 portions

1/3 cup olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup pearl barley
1 cup white wine
6 cups chicken stock
2 cups cream
1 clove crushed garlic
1 cup bacon, crispy
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, finely sliced
Torn basil, liberal amounts 
1/2 cup grated Asiago Cheese (plus extra for final garnish)

In a stockpot over medium low heat add butter, olive oil and barley. Stir frequently until barley becomes golden brown. Add white wine and stir until evaporated. Add chicken stock and cream bring barley to a boil and reduce to low simmer. Allow barley to cook for approximately 35 minutes or until barley is soft and tender. Fold in remaining ingredients. Remove from heat. Cover barley risotto for 15 minutes and serve garnished with additional Asiago if desired.

Wine Pairing:

Green Lane Estate Winery
Chardonnay, 2010

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Authortherese degrasse

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