These recipes constitute my intake of food, and have been beta-tested successfully for the past five years. I am still very much alive and healthy, proof that our Western notions of the need for meat, wheat, milk and sugar is unfounded. The majority of the world also get by on a simple diet largely similar to mine, and are generally healthier than us.
I use a large wok to cook all these dishes; a large saucepan will suffice. Each recipe serves about 3 or 4 people (depending on their hunger), or one person 3 or 4 times if refrigerated. Organic food is preferred where possible, and always read the label to ensure things are not dosed up with artificial preservatives, flavours, sugar, GM mutations, etc.
Copyright ©2002 Malcolm Smith
These recipes are free software; you can redistribute them and/or modify them under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.
DISCLAIMER: All these recipes are distributed in the hope that they will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.
Lentil Soup, with or without the soupiness.
Preparation time: 30 minutes; serves 3 -4.
If using green lentils or adzuki beans, soak them overnight and cook them for 30-40 minutes until soft; if time is short, open a can and rinse them. If using red lentils, wash them and pick out any bits of gravel lurking. Peel and chop the onion and fry it in the oil on a medium heat, stirring often, until it starts to soften after about 5 minutes. Chop and add any garlic, and continue frying until the onions are golden brown, stirring often. In the mean time, wash and cut the broccoli/courgettes. Add the lentils/beans and stir in so that they are covered in oil. If using red lentils, add the water and stir, bringing the mixture to the boil, then put a lid on the pan and cook gently for 30 minutes until the water has been absorbed and the lentils are soft. (If using pre-cooked lentils, you can bypass this step) Add the broccoli/courgettes, pepper, bayleaf and spices, then stir continuously for 5 minutes, until the vegetables are cooked. Add more water to make into soup, or not, as desired.
Serve with brown basmati rice, lashings of tamari, and a salad of sliced cucumber, celery, lettuce and raw carrots. Add a side dish of jacket potatoes filled with grated raw parsnip, tamari and olive oil.
This meal was adapted from "The Bean Book" by Rose Elliot [Fontana 1979] ISBN 0-00-635536-6, inspired by Wizard Prang's cooking 'A Pot of Message'. The name Khitchari actually means 'mess' as in 'mess of pottage', and is the origin of 'kedgeree'.
Preparation time: 90 minutes, serves 3 - 4.
Wash the beans and soak them overnight. Rinse the rice and beans again. Peel the potato (if you want) and cut it into small chunks. Peel and chop the onion and fry it in the oil on a medium heat, stirring often, until it starts to soften after about 5 minutes. Chop and add garlic and spices, and keep frying until the onions are golden brown, stirring often. Quarter 2 of the tomatoes, and add them along with the potato, mung beans and rice. Turn down the heat for a few minutes and stir the mixture so that everything is coated with oil. Add the water and bring to the boil. Put a tight lid on the pan, turn down the heat and cook very gently for about 45 minutes, until the rice and beans are cooked. Turn off the heat and leave to stand (covered) for another 15 minutes. By now the liquid should have been absorbed, and you should be getting hungry.
Serve with lashings of tamari, and a salad of sliced tomato, raw onion rings and carrots.
This dish was featured on the cover-photo of my first demo-tape "Tone Control" sitting on my tubano drum. The idea is: eat well, play well; and mens sana in corpore sano ('a healthy mind in a healthy body').
Preparation time: 20 minutes, serves 3 - 4.
Either soak the chick peas/gungo peas/beans overnight and cook them for 2 hours, or if time is short, open a can and rinse them. Peel and chop the onion and fry it in the oil on a medium heat, stirring often, until it starts to soften after about 5 minutes. Chop and add any garlic, and continue frying until the onions are golden brown, stirring often. In the mean time, wash and cut the broccoli/courgettes. Add the chick peas/beans and stir in so that they are covered in oil. Add the broccoli/courgettes, pepper and spices, then stir continuously for 5 minutes, until the vegetables are cooked.
Serve with brown basmati rice, lashings of tamari, and a salad of sliced cucumber, celery, lettuce and raw carrots. Add spring onions and jacket potatoes for variation.
A versatile Chinese-style stirfry, with a cooling (yin) nature.
Preparation time: 20 minutes, serves 3 - 4.
Either soak the beans overnight and cook them for 2 hours, or, if time is short, open a can and rinse them. Peel and chop the onion and fry it in the oil on a medium heat, stirring often, until it starts to soften after about 5 minutes. Chop and add the garlic and ginger, and continue frying until the onions are golden brown, stirring often. In the mean time, wash and cut the mushrooms, mangetout/peas, beansprouts and water chestnuts. Add the mushrooms and fry for another 2 minutes, then add the beans and stir in so that they are covered in oil. Add the mangetout/peas, beansprouts, water chestnuts, pepper and spices, then stir continuously for 5 minutes, until the vegetables are cooked.
Serve with brown basmati rice, lashings of tamari, and a salad of sliced cucumber, celery, lettuce and raw carrots. Add corn-on-the-cob or roast parsnips and sweet potatoes as a side dish.
Brown Basmati Rice is the best food to be found on Earth. It provides protein and carbohydrates as well as B-vitamins which aid digestion. Sadly most Westerners eat white rice (and white bread and white pasta), which has had all the goodness (the husks) removed, leaving just the energy, but without the vitamins to digest it. This causes constipation and eventually the cancers and heart disease we are all dying from. Apparently brown things were thought unclean to the white colonials who invaded the East. Basmati rice was traditionally used for special occasions and parties, because of its fragrant aroma, but I reckon that every meal should be special. It is said that the smell of basmati rice cooking will help to sell a house or create a convivial atmosphere. Maybe try also Jasmine Rice, but again, make sure it is brown, not white.
Preparation time: 30 minutes; serves 5 - 6.
Rinse the rice and place it in a saucepan with a tight-fitting lid. Add the water and salt, and bring to the boil (the salt raises the temperature). Put on the lid and turn down the heat to very low. Cook for 20 minutes or so, until all the water has been absorbed (this time will depend on your cooking equipment, so experimentation is necessary at first). Turn off the heat and allow the pan to stand for another 10 minutes, letting the rice finish cooking in its own steam.
My theory with rice is that it can never be overcooked; what tends to happen is that either there is still water left (in which case bring it back to the boil and then leave it to cook in its own steam), or the bottom layer becomes toasted, but this tastes good! If it is too sticky, cook for longer with the lid removed, so as to let out excess steam. So don't worry about overdoing it. Rice was designed to be easy to cook so that humans could evolve quicker ;-)
Serve hot or cold.
I call this Limestone Bread because of the wild rock-like formations of the dough. This dish makes a great breakfast, or indeed lunch or tea.
Preparation time: 90 minutes baking, then 10 minutes to prepare; serves 12.
*how on Earth they can import it so cheaply from that distant star, I'll never know - good stuff though: no wheat, gluten, yeast, egg or sugar.
Pre-heat the oven and spread a good layer of olive oil over a large flat oven tray, to make sure the bread doesn't stick to it. Measure a litre of warm water to have ready (once your hands are covered in dough, that's it). In a very large bowl, mix the flour, sea salt, caraway seeds and baking powder. Pour in 4 tablespoons of olive oil and mix into a consistent texture. Then (and here is where the 'experience' comes in handy) pour in some warm water while kneading the dough mixture; the difficulty is knowing when to stop. The amount of water seems to depend on many factors, so start with too little, say 700ml (1.25 pints), knead that in, and then add more water until the texture becomes sticky. If it is too firm, the bread will be too hard, so go as sticky as you dare. You can always add more water, but once there is too much it will get too sloppy; all is not lost though, as you can add a bit more flour (keep some spare for such emergencies) to balance the mix. If you're feeling experimental, you could even add sun-dried tomatoes or pitted black olives to the dough.
Once you have given the dough a good workout, divide it into three round balls, and shape into round loaves about 15cm in diameter. Place these on the pre-oiled baking sheet so that they are touching, and slice each into four quarters, cutting so that the knife goes right through but not separating the segments. This creates more surface area to aid the baking process and yields loaves that can be easily broken into handy sized individual portions. Leave to bake for 45 minutes or so, depending on your oven. My landlady's Aga was great for making bread, but gas or electric ovens may vary. Check to see if it is cooked - if not, put it back for longer. Once you're satisfied, take it out of the oven and leave it to stand for a good 10 minutes, while you prepare a hearty houmous salad...
Houmous can be made quite easily, but I usually buy it for convenience, since I don't have a whole family to feed. Be sure to check the label though; some 'traditional' houmous includes sugar and other nasty additives (even 'spices' can contain sugar), so beware. Curiously, most supermarkets' own brands are pretty good and just stick to the essential ingredients: chick peas, olive oli, garlic, sesame seed paste (tahini), lemon juice, salt.
To serve, slice and toast the bread. This reduces the moisture (this stuff is DENSE) and gives a better, carboniferous taste. It is easiest to keep the slices thick to discourage disintegration. Pour a dash of olive oil on each slice, then spread lavishly with houmous. Sprinkle with caraway and poppy seeds (hemp seeds too if you like), before adding sliced tomato and cucumber. Garnish with fresh basil leaves, and finally wrap each slice in a lettuce leaf, the larger the better; iceberg or romaine lettuce work best. This is quite important, as this sandwich can be quite messy to eat, and the lettuce keeps it all together, saving you from houmous and tomato stains. (Not recommended for young children!) In many cultures, rice dishes are similarly wrapped in lettuce or vine leaves. Serve with a raw carrot and stick of celery for dipping extra houmous, and olives.
The bread should be kept in an earthenware pot (not a fridge or cupboard), and eaten within 4 days. Alternatively, it can be frozen to keep for a later time. If you don't have easy access to an oven, or much time, Sunnyvale and Rossisky are good rye breads with no yeast, wheat or sugar.
There are many types of Gluten-Free Muesli now available in shops, but many still contain oats or peanuts which I cannot bear. So here is my own version, which can be infinitely varied.
Select ingredients. Obviously this is a Trophologist's nightmare, as all food groups are blatantly combined, so care and discretion is needed; K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Stupid!) Severe troughs shall result from excessive over-indulgence. Technically it is best for digestion to eat fruits separately from grains and nuts, but this is not always easy to do. Once you find a good balance, one can prepare a large container of the mixture, and then buy all the ingredients in bulk to save on packaging. Watch out again that dried fruit often contains preservatives (sulphur dioxide=farts) and banana chips are covered with sugar (as if they're not already sweet enough!). Be sure to chop fresh fruits (and salads as well of course) last of all, to preserve the enzymes which will quickly spoil. Live food advocates proclaim the goodness of raw foods for this reason that cooking kills much goodness.
Serve in a dish with rice milk, or alternatively add water and warm in a pan to make porridge. Muesli can be soaked in water overnight to ease digestion.
© copyright Malcolm Smith 2002-04-10 - last updated 2004-02-02