This project didn’t happen by accident. Many years ago, I was scouring the interwebs for ideas for new meals, when I came across a sweet potato-and-peanut dish from West Africa. It opened my eyes to some new ways of cooking, and it was delicious.
If you haven’t used peanuts in a curry-like format before, you’re missing out. They add a great flavor to sauces, and match well with traditional curry accoutrements, like tomatoes, onions and peppers. Thus I found myself with Matoke, a stew from Uganda traditionally served over mashed plantains.
Wait, mashed plantains?
Oh, oh yes, mashed plantains. Creamy, sweet, oh-so-yellow and oh-so-good.
Autumn is inching its way closer to being a part of my life, and I’m reacting in kind by trying to use as much of summer’s leftover bounty as possible. In this case, I had some fresh turmeric that I attempted to grow in my garden this year. Turmeric is a native to southeast India, a warm, moist place that doesn’t have a lot in common with Oregon’s growing seasons. So my turmeric didn’t turn out very big, but I did grind up the rhizomes I got for use in this dish – supplemented by some powder I had in the pantry.
This dish was outstanding. It originally called for goat, but I “chickened” out and went with poultry instead. Easily one of the Top 5 dishes of this project so far.
- 3 plantains, peeled and chopped
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 Tb butter
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 30 oz can diced tomatoes
- 1 ts turmeric, ground
- 1 ts cumin, ground
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 ts cardamon, ground
- 3 short hot peppers
- 2 Tb oil
- 1 cup fresh peanut butter
- 1 cup water
- 1 vegetable bullion cube
- 1 lb chicken, cubed
- Sprinkle the plantains with lemon juice and set aside for 5 minutes.
- Put plantains in a large pot, with enough water to cover by 4-5 inches. Bring to a boil, then simmer until tender.
- Drain, add milk and butter, and mash.
- Heat the oil in a large pan. Fry onion, tomatoes, peppers and garlic together, and add spices. Cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Add meat and brown.
- Add vegetable broth and peanut butter, boil then reduce to simmer for 20 minutes, stirring frequently.