Green Cashew Curry
Look, either you suit up in your winter coats to witness firsthand the aural miracle of the Hungry March Band serenading the Polar Bear Club on the beach at Coney Island as Astroland officially opens for another fun-filled season or you spend a precious day of your dwindling life expectancy restocking the pantry like some kind of automotan housewife!
Just look at those naked shelves!Like, what, we're going to eat a rock shaped baked potato, seasoned with raisins, rancid quinoa and ear medicine for a dead cat? Sounds delish. Maybe we should order out. But wait, there's that green curry recipe I'd been ogling in that little Readers Digest-sized cooking mag at Ms. Lindsay-Abaire's house, the one she emailed to me under the subject heading "What an asshole!" as if it was her fault I forgot to take it with me as I was frog-marching my wailing son downstairs after a "too short" 3 hour visit. Wait, you don't think she's calling me...
Fried from the day's festivities, I wasn't counting on anything more vivid than merely servicable, but this speed-easy sauce turned frozen cooked shrimp, plain rice and steamed baby carrots (I told you, I was scraping the bottom of the barrel) into something I can't wait to eat again! Whoa, Nelly!
Green Cashew Curry
Peel a 1/4 in. thick, finger-length slice of ginger and chop it into tiny pieces with a blender
(If the height of your cabinets mean that you store your blender with its lid's detachable plastic knob in the blender jar, make sure your appliance's power button is set to "off" before you plug it in, because otherwise, your poor wiping-out skills may put you at risk of eating something that's probably harmless, but looks an awful lot like ground glass. I'm not being rhetorical here. I don't know what it is with me and the blender lately. Last month, I attempted to grind a half a cup of peanuts without bothering to put the lid on at all. Goobers gone wild.)
Pour a scant cup of roasted raw cashews into a dry pan and roast em and toast em but don't burn em.
The whiz all but two tablespoons of them until it looks like your blender's full of sand. Observe blender-appropriate safety precautions at all times.
1/3 cup of plain low-fat yogurt
1/4cup of packed cilantro leaves & stems (Lindsay-Abaire is on record as thinking this sounds stingy)
1Tablespoon of brown sugar
sea salt to taste
& 1 teaspoon of curry powder (Stingy, says Lindsay-Abaire, who suspects the magazine in which this recipe was published in its original form to be geared toward culinary low-brows who couldn't deal with the idea of ever using more than a teaspoon of the stuff. I might add that I think my success with this recipe can be traced in large part to this wonderful medium-spicy, aromatic curry powder blind luck bade me purchase from a bulk jar at Aphrodisia, this little store on Bleecker that's one half amazing herbs, spices and other pulverized essentials and the other half nosegays, potpourri and country cottage-shaped ceramic teapots that make me break out in hives.
Rock that hot blender action for a minute or two, then spoon it onto whatever lame excuse you're trying to pass off as dinner, sprinkle with the two tablespoons of reserved cashews and blush fetchingly as they slather you with their honeyed words.
PS - Upon leaving the boardwalk at Coney Island, we decided that we could no longer let hearsay determine the best pizza ) in NYC and hoofed it to Neptune to see if Totonno's is really all that. It was and is, and just as I was warming up to the deliberately less-than-gracious service, the waitress cast off the shackles of long habit and bestowed a smile on young Milo. Hope her face didn't ache the next morning. I know he's kind of hard to see, but, believe me, all you Soprano fans are going to want to put your hands together for the guy in the next booth!