BrokeAss Gourmet

BrokeAss Gourmet

Root Vegetable Latkes

  • Prep Time 20 minutes
  • Cook Time 20 minutes
  • Estimated Cost $8
  • 0 Comments

When I think about the exterior caramelization that happens when a shredded sweet potato hits hot oil, there's just nothing else for me.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I prefer sweet potatoes.

I know, I know. As an American Jew (two groups known for their deep love of the white potato), it's practically blasphemous for me to shun the humble Russet. And yeah, I can see its place in a recipe now and then: The toothsome steak fryThe knish. The pierogi--potatoes do makes sense there. But still, given the choice, I go for the yams.

It seems like the latke should be the kind of potato exception that a non-potato-lover like myself should make. But when I think about the exterior caramelization that happens when a shredded sweet potato hits hot oil, there's just nothing else for me.

Here, I've taken things over the top by adding more sweet root vegetables: carrots (I used rainbow carrots, but any kind will work), and beets, which add a pop of bright purple color, as well as earthy sweetness. I've kept the seasoning simple--just thinly sliced scallions, salt, and pepper, but these would welcome a bit of grated ginger, fresh turmeric, and/or minced garlic, too. Feel free to get creative. 

But whatever you do, be sure to eat these hot, right out of the pan (or oven, where you'll warm them), with plenty of sour cream and/or applesauce. Tonight, I'll be serving these alongside mouthwateringly tender brisket and some roasted broccolini. But between you, me, and the applesauce, these latkes will be the star of the show.  

I mean, just look at that. How could they not be?

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds (orange-fleshed) sweet potatoes, scrubbed and grated (no need to peel) $2.50
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and grated $1
  • 4 small beets, cooked, peeled, and grated (Trader Joes' Steamed and Peeled Baby Beets are a great shortcut here) $2
  • 3 scallions (white and green parts), trimmed and sliced thinly $1 for a bunch
  • 1/2 teaspoon each salt and freshly cracked black pepper Pantry
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten $1.50 for 6
  • 1/3 cup flour Pantry
  • oil, for frying (I like the flavor of a half-and-half blend of olive oil and cocont oil, but vegetable, canola, or grapeseed oils all work well) Pantry  

Recipe Serves 6-8

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sweet potato, carrots, beets, scallions, salt, pepper, egg, and flour. Stir well, using a spoon or your hands, until well-combined.
  3. Pour the oil into one or two large frying pans until it comes up about 1/2 inch in the pan. 
  4. Heat the oil over medium-high heat, until it sizzles when a piece of grated sweet potato is added. 
  5. Wet your hands under running water, and form a latke into 2-1/2-inch rounds that are about 1/2 inch thick. (though you should feel free to make them larger or smaller as desired). 
  6. Add the latke immediately to the hot pan and continue forming latkes and adding them to the pan, until the pan is full, with plenty of space between each latke. (To give you an idea of what this looks like, I cook 4-5 small latkes at a time in my 12-inch frying pan.)
  7. Cook for 1-2 minutes, watching carefully to avoid burning. 
  8. Flip the latkes in the order you added them to the pan so they brown evenly, then cook for another minute or two, until the latkes are crispy on the outside.
  9. As the latkes finish, transfer them to a baking sheet (make sure to leave space between them), and keep warm in the oven.
  10. Serve the latkes hot, with sour cream, creme fraiche, or Greek yogurt, and applesauce (my favorite is this one, which features cardamom). 

Sweet Potato Latkes

  • Prep Time 0:15
  • Cook Time 0:10
  • Estimated Cost $5
  • 3 Comments

T’was the night before Hanukkah and all through the shtetl
Not a person was stirring, not even dreidel
The tzimmes were simmering in the slow-cooker with care
In hopes that the mishpocha soon would be there
The kinder were nestled all snug in their beds
While visions of sweet potato latkes danced in their heads!

Just try them, you’ll see. These are latkes you fall asleep thinking about and wake up craving.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb garnet yams, grated (I like to leave the peel on) $2
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced $1 for a bunch
  • 1/2 medium onion, grated $0.50 for a whole onion
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour Pantry
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten $1.50 for 6
  • 1 tsp salt Pantry
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper Pantry
  • 3/4 cup olive oil (vegetable or canola oil will work too, but I prefer the taste of olive oil) Pantry

Recipe Serves 6-8

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. 
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine grated yams, scallions, onion, flour, egg, salt and pepper. Stir well to combine.
  3. Heat oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat until viscous.
  4. Form about 3 tbsp of sweet potato mixture into a ball and flatten it gently between your palms. 
  5. Slide it into the oil, and repeat with the remaining mixture, working in batches, so as to leave room between the latkes as they cook. 
  6. Drain cooked latkes on paper towels, and transfer to an ungreased baking sheet and keep warm in the oven until ready to serve.

Lamb Tagine with Golden Raisins and Almonds

  • Prep Time 0:30
  • Cook Time 2:30
  • Estimated Cost $18.50
  • 1 Comment

Tagines were the original Crock-Pots—the very first “set-it-and-forget-it” appliances. Tagines (the name for both the stew and the dish it’s cooked in) hail from Morocco, but their popularity now spans worldwide—and for good reason: cooking meat over low heat for long periods of time in flavorful spices and liquid yields a tender, aromatic result. The cone-shaped top on traditional tagines helps in this, promoting the return of all condensation to the bottom, allowing the stew’s ingredients to cook evenly.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a tagine though—you can also cook this in a dutch oven or other large pot with a fitted lid.

Note: Remember to buy your raisins and almonds in the bulk section for the best prices.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil Pantry
  • 1 pound boneless lamb stew meat (cut into 1" pieces) $7
  • 1 red onion, halved and sliced $0.50
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped Pantry
  • 1 1" piece ginger, peeled and grated $0.50
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 2" strips $1
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped into coin $0.50
  • 2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes $3
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon $1.50 for 1 oz.
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric $1.50 for 1 oz.
  • 3/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper Pantry
  • 1 tablespoon honey Pantry
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins $1
  • 1/4 cup blanched, slivered almonds $1
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro, chopped $1 for a bunch

Recipe Serves 4

Directions

  1. Heat oil in a dutch oven or tagine over medium-high heat. Brown the lamb on both sides, working in batches if necessary. Place browned meat on a clean plate and set aside.
  2. Reduce heat to medium and add the onions and garlic to the pan (there should be enough fat left from the meat to cook them, but if not, add a touch more oil). 
  3. Cook, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until onions begin to wilt. 
  4. Add the ginger, bell pepper, carrots, diced tomatoes and 1/2 cup water. 
  5. Stir in the cinnamon, turmeric, salt, pepper, honey and raisins.
  6. Return the lamb to the mixture, stir well to combine, and cover. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, undisturbed, for 2 1/2 hour, or until lamb is very tender
  7. Serve in bowls, plain or over rice/couscous/quinoa, garnished with the almonds and chopped cilantro.
  8. Other good toppings are harissa (or other hot sauce), plain yogurt and/or chopped kalamata olives.

 

Tandoori-Style Roast Chicken

  • Prep Time 1 hour, 10 minutes
  • Cook Time 30 minutes
  • Estimated Cost $16.00
  • 4 Comments

Tandoor ovens, perhaps best known for their role in cooking naan and Tandoori chicken and fish, are a mainstay in Indian and Pakistani homes and restaurants. They get extremely hot and are used to quickly cook food, often charring it a bit in the most pleasant of ways.

I don't have one in my tiny apartment kitchen, but that's never stopped me from making my own naan, and, feeling inspired by some delicious Pakistani food I had recently, I decided to put a tandoor spin on roast chicken.

As you know, I'm a big fan of roasting chicken at a very high heat, yielding a crisp skin and tender, juicy interior. Since this is in a similar vicinity as tandoor, cooking, I figured that if I applied Tandoori flavors to chicken legs before roasting them at a high heat, i I could get a similar result to traditional Tandoor chicken. Though the skin is typically removed before roasting in the case of Tandoori chicken (and you can feel free to do so if you prefer), I decided to leave it on, because as far as I am concerned, crispy chicken skin is the new bacon.

I started by making a marinade of spices (look for these in Indian specialty grocery stores like Vik's--they're amazingly cheap when you buy them in bulk!) and yogurt (regular whole milk yogurt, Greek yogurt, plain soy yogurt, or plain coconut milk yogurt all will work), which my chicken legs bathed in overnight (though you can still get delicious chicken if you only have an hour to marinate). The chicken and onions went for a nice long dip.

After tenderizing (the calcium in the yogurt activates enzymes in the meat which breaks down the protein, keeping it ultra-juicy after cooking), the chicken and onions get roasted, just like with regular baked chicken, and that's when the magic happens. The spices impart a deep, dark red color, the skin crisps, and the onions get all charred and roasty.

The lemons and cilantro aren't required, but they do add an amazing pop of freshness. Serve this one with homemade naan (I made my new favorite kind -- chickpea flour!), and a crisp green salad or slaw. 

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon paprika $1.50 for 1 ounce
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin $1.50 for 1 ounce
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala $1.50 for 1 ounce
  • 1 tablespoon salt Pantry
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom $1.50 for 1 ounce
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper $1.50 for 1 ounce
  • 8 ounces plain yogurt (dairy, soy or coconut all work) $1.50
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced Pantry
  • 1 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced $0.50
  • 2 whole, bone-in, skin-on chicken legs, cut into 2 drumsticks and 2 thighs $6
  • 1/2 red onion, cut into 1/8ths $0.50

Recipe Serves 2-3

Directions

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the spices, salt, and yogurt. Mix well to combine.
  2. Combine the chicken and onions with the yogurt mixture in an air-tight storage container or a zip-top bag. Make sure the yogurt covers every piece of chicken.
  3. Let marinate for at least an hour (and up to 12 hours).
  4. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  5. Line a baking sheet with foil.
  6. Arrange the marinated chicken and onions on the baking sheet, making sure to leave space between each piece of chicken.
  7. Roast for 27-30 minutes, until the chicken is slightly blackened on the outside, and the meat is tender on the inside.
  8. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  9. Serve hot, with chopped cilantro and lemon wedges, if desired. 

Category: Meals

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