Monday, November 1, 2010

Vegan Mofo 1.1: Veggies in Curried Tomato & Peanut Butter Sauce over Brown Basmati

Happy first day of Vegan Mofo everyone! I hadn’t intended to sign up this year because my November is crazy but then I realized there was no reason not to. I am going to try my best to post at least once a day. With a little luck that will happen. My plan is to number my posts by day and then post within the day. For example 1.1 would be the first post of the first day. If there is a second post that day it would be 1.2, etc. I am going to do that for my long time readers that have gotten used to one post per day so they don’t miss anything. I expect my posts will be shorter this month due to my schedule.

For those of you that don’t know me I a foodie who became vegan a few years ago due to cancer. My husband (Dan) and I both love good food with a lot of flavor. The recipes I post are full of flavor. However I also try to make them as healthy as I can. I always cook with health as well as flavor in mind.

Some of our favorite cuisines are Italian, Indian, Japanese, and Thai. I am of Italian heritage so Italian is hands down my favorite. Indian food is something that I have cooked for almost 3 decades since college when my best friend had come to the US for school from Madras, India. Tonight I made an Indian inspired dish because we had not had any in a few days.

Since the post of our Sunday activities is going to be huge (and probably require more than a few separate entries) I decided to start Vegan Mofo with our dinner tonight which was a simple affair. I made quick and easy curried veggies over brown rice. Here is what I did:

Veggies in a Curried Tomato and Peanut Butter Sauce over Brown Basmati
Serves 6


1 yellow onion, peeled and diced (allow to stand 10 minutes before heating)
6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced (allow to stand 10 minutes before heating)
½ tablespoon fresh ginger, minced or grated (if it is organic you can leave the skin just be sure to clean it well)
4 cups fresh or 28 ounces canned peeled diced tomatoes (fresh has much less sodium)
4 cups water
½ tablespoon turmeric powder
1 tablespoon black mustard seeds
½ tablespoon coriander seed
½ tablespoon cumin seeds
¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
¼ teaspoon ajowan seeds
freshly ground black pepper, to taste (be generous since the piperine in the black pepper makes the turmeric more bioavailable)
crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
3 tablespoons reduced-fat peanut butter, or to taste
2 carrots, cut into bite-size chunks
2 parsnips, cut into bite-size chunks
2 Japanese eggplants, cut into bite-sized chunks
2 crowns broccoli, cut into bite-sized chunks
1 lime, zested and juiced
1 ½ cups brown basmati rice
3 cups water


Combine the onions, garlic, ginger, tomatoes, water, spices, carrots and parsnips. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the sauce has begun to thick, about 30 minutes.

Combine the rice and water and cook. Depending on the type of pan you are using the rice will take anywhere from 35 (using enameled cast iron) to 50 (using stainless steel) minutes to cook including the time to bring the liquid to a simmer. Start the rice at the time appropriate for the material of the pot. Having the rice finished a little early isn’t as much of a problem as too late since the rice will hold better than the veggies.

Add the peanut butter (to taste) to the sauce and mix to combine. Next add the eggplants and cook for 10 – 15 minutes. The broccoli gets incorporated the last 15 minutes of cooking so it doesn’t get overcooked. To finish add lime zest and lime juice and stir to combine. Serve over rice.

Nutritional Information:

Amount Per Serving
Calories - 375.32
Calories From Fat (14%) - 53.25

Total Fat - 6.37g
Saturated Fat - 1.15g
Cholesterol - 0mg
Sodium - 61.13mg
Potassium - 1325.55mg
Total Carbohydra tes -73.74g
Fiber - 13.7g
Sugar - 13.49g
Protein - 11.05g


This dish has a lot of flavor. It is certainly not traditional. I used reduced fat peanut butter for the fat component rather than coconut milk (or even light coconut milk) to reduce the saturated fat. The broccoli was added at the end to retain the maximum amount of nutrition. If you are okay with adding more fat this dish would be great finished with a sprinkle of chopped peanuts, slivered almonds or roasted cashews for texture. The cilantro and spinach rice I made a few days ago would also be great with this dish and would add extra vitamins and minerals.

Signing out:

Tomorrow will start out early here since it is Election Day which means it is time for me to sign out. Talk to you again tomorrow.  I hope everyone had the best Monday possible.


  1. Oh, goodness, you said the magic words. "Peanut Butter". Peanut Butter is to this vegan as Bacon is to most makes everything better. Just put a little PB in it : )

    And I was going to cheat. Tonight's dinner post would be my post for tomorrow just in case I am busy (it's voting day, after all!). But I like your system of numbering your posts.

    I'm glad you decided to participate in MoFo : )

  2. Stephanie,

    I am right there with you, I adore peanut butter. Actually I guess you can say I love all nut butters. It does make nearly everything better.

    Nice idea to make dinner tonight tomorrow's post. I have such a busy week I am hoping I can keep up. I still have to post Sunday and that will be multiple posts since there are so many picts I want to share.

    Hope you have a good day tomorrow and don't spend too much time waiting in line to vote. Around here if you show up at lunch the lines are almost nil. Last year I asked our election judges if there was any pattern to when people voted and they were more than happy to tell me. You might want to ask your judges tomorrow for the next election.

    have a good evening,

  3. Hey Ali,
    I know you make your own reduced fat peanut butter and thats great and so simple.

    But I have a couple of questions. Does it work with other nut butters. Almond butter is my preferred nut butter and often has floating oil. Could I use the same process to reduce its fat?

    And secondly have you ever heard of or used PB2? I didn't know if it was ok to post the link so I didn't but if you google it, it comes up pretty easily. The nutritional details are on the website but basically, in a 2 tbsp serving there are 45 calories.

  4. Your recipes are *always* good, but this one is a winner! And what do you know, I have an eggplant and broccoli to use up!

    Thank you, also, for the tips on using the oven and cheap dehydrator = I've been lusting after one for awhile but assumed they weren't cheap!

  5. Sounds absolutely wonderfu, Ali....can't wait to try it!

  6. happy late halloween!glad you are doing mofo, i like your shorter more frequent posts, more than the long ones i think. ttysoon Alicia

  7. That looks and sounds amazing!
    Happy MoFo'ing.

  8. So we were both thinking curry and peanut butter last night ;-)

  9. Shannon,

    I have yet to try to make reduced fat almond butter but it should work exactly the same way. What happens is the nut butter is very thick without the oil, will start to get even thicker and grainy as you add water but will smooth out when you hit the sweet spot. It is super easy just drizzle in the water while the blender or food processor is running.

    I have not heard of PB2 but I will look it up now. How do they get the calories that low I wonder. :-/

    thanks for the tip,

  10. sgcorrie,

    Glad you like the sound of this. I used the broccoli and eggplant for the same reason, LOL. Any veg would work in here. I think some shredded kale would be delicious added at the end.

    I used my cheap dehydrator and oven for a couple of years before I decided I would use a big dehydrater enough to justify the expense and space. The Excalibur is a big countertop space hog.


  11. Aimee,

    Thanks, I have posted a similar sauce with tomato, peanut butter, and coconut milk in the past. I was trying to make this a little different to see what we thought. It is just as tasty without the coconut. I hope you like it too.


  12. Michelle,

    Hope you had a good Halloween. I really debated if I should commit to Mofo with my crazy schedule this month. I agree with you the shorter posts are much easier to write. ;-)

    talk to you later,

  13. Jeni,

    Thanks! Apparently peanut butter is very popular this time of year. ;-)

    Happy MoFo'ing to you too,

  14. Heather,

    I thought it was funny too when I saw your post. Unfortunately I didn't have your lovely leftover butternut squash sauce to use as a base. Great job repurposing your leftovers yesterday, BTW. :-)


  15. So glad to see you will be participating in MoFo, Alicia. I will be looking forward to your posts!


  16. Courtney,

    Thanks, I wasn't certain I could get a post up everyday but I am going to try. I appreciate the encouragement. ;-)


  17. Mmm... this looks delicious and cozy!

  18. dolmadez,

    Thanks I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Cozy is a very good description. ;-)


  19. This looks good - much healthier (no surprise) than the peanut butter - coconut milk sauce I sometimes make. The tomato and spices interest me, and I trust your recipes to be really good. The mix of vegetables you included also sounds just perfect.

  20. Jessica,

    I also make a curried tomato sauce with peanut butter and coconut if you want to look at that. Last night I wanted to find out what we would think if I left out the coconut and it was fine. I am trying to back off on my coconut usage due to the sat fat.

    I think any veggies would work in this. I have used green beans, cauliflower and shredded kale in the past too.

    talk to you later,


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