Saturday, July 12, 2008
Pakstani Kima with Indian Chapati
Tonight I realized that it was going on 5:00 and I hadn't planned anything to eat. No biggie, that happens just about every night. So I turned to the trusty Internet. I found a recipe for Chapati, which I've been wanting to try for a while. I love the idea of cooking Indian and other Middle Eastern foods, but the ingredients are always so foreign to me that I get scared. Plus, since we're on a very tight budget, I tend to shy away from buying ingredients just to try a recipe - more often I look for recipes to accommodate the foods I already have. But chapati seemed simple enough, and the recipe doesn't have a bunch of weird words like ghee, garam masala, and dal.
So I knew I wanted to make chapati. The next step was to decide what to eat with it. This brought me back to the original reason I don't usually make Indian foods - what could I prepare with the foods I have on hand? Then I remembered the Pakistani Kima I made a while back. It isn't Indian, but it definitely has that Middle Eastern flavor and texture that I wanted. So kima it was.
1/2 lb. ground beef
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 cup chopped onion, or 2 tbsp. dry minced onion
1 tbsp. curry powder
1 1/2 tsp. salt
Dash each pepper, cinnamon, and ginger
1 (14 oz) can chopped tomatoes, undrained
2 potatoes, diced
2 cups frozen peas or green beans
Brown ground beef in large skillet with garlic and onion. When meat is browned, stir in curry powder, salt, seasonings, tomatoes, potatoes, and peas. Cover and simmer for 25 minutes, adding a small amount of water if necessary. Last time, I added water. This time I didn't end up needing it.
While the kima is simmering, make the chapati.
1 c. whole wheat flour
1c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp olive oil
3/4 c. hot water or as needed
In a bowl mix together the flour and salt. Stir in oil and enough water to make a soft dough that is elastic but not sticky. Knead the dough until smooth.
Divide into 8 parts (the recipe said 10, but I chose to do 8 larger chapatis). Roll into balls and let rest for a few minutes.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the balls of dough until very thin like a tortilla.
Heat a skillet over medium heat until hot, and grease lightly. When pan is hot put a chapati on it. Cook until the underside has brown spots, about 30 seconds, then flip and cook on the other side. Continue with remaining dough.
It took me about half the batch before I could get mine to look chapati-like. I eventually decided to not grease the pan anymore, and to cook them for much longer than 30 seconds. After I made those changes, I was able to get those pretty brown spots.
Zaylee was okay with the kima, but she really loved the chapati. Each time she finished a piece, she would call out, "More 'pati please!" So cute. And Thomas was pretty good with his too, though I think he preferred the more strongly-flavored kima.
As for Jeff and I, we loved the whole deliciously flavorful meal!
Kima - 6 servings, 200 calories per serving
Chapati - 8 servings, 130 calories per serving