For the Benefit of Mr. Spice
Did someone say 'spices'?
I'll try and contain myself from going off on one about the marvels of spices I really will, but I can tell you now, it'll be difficult. You see, spices are my latest passion.
Anyone who follows me might have noticed that I've been skiving off for a while and though I would love to tell you that I've spent my time accomplishing all sorts of amazing feats, like eating a jam donut without licking my lips, (I will do it one day, I will) I'm afraid I have nothing to boast except that I'm hooked on spices since you last heard from me.
Ah, there's nothing like them!
But I'm not going to natter on because I've got a recipe to tell you and tell you it I shall. So no more talk of spices. Onwards with this recipe.
How to make wild rice and vegetables in ginger, coriander and turmeric
So how do you do it? Easy. Just buy all of the above and cook them. Ok, there's a little more to it than that which is why I've been trying out my camera man skills and risked everything as my frying pan spat at me to bring you this recipe step by step, spice by spice.
Did someone say 'spices'?
Well, since you mentioned spices, I might as well just say a word.
You see the thing is this – spices are great. Each spice has its function that helps the body, repairs it, keeps it healthy – you name it. If you suffer from backache, headaches, toothache, whatever, there's a spice for every occasion and every ailment and any number or ways to 'administer' you spice - you can drink them, you can pound them, shred them, juice them, you can paste them on your face, stick them in your ears, up your nose - you can even eat them!
But enough nattering. On with this recipe.
You're going to need some vegetables with that wild rice, so what do we have in the pantry?
I recommend chicory although really you can use any leafy green veg you like. All the same, (you know I can't resist it) I'll give you a few of the wonderful benefits of chicory:
- It's brimming with vitamin A which is excellent for eyesight (remember my Hub on improving sight...?) and eaten regular (three or four times a week) will bring about noticeable improvement (I can confirm this).
- It's a natural laxative, so, cue Carpenters music, 'it's goodbye to constipation...'
- What's more, its' juice is helpful in treating asthma and hay fever (provided dairy products, sweets, pasta and pastries are avoided) if taken with carrot and celery juice..
so you can probably guess what the other veg I recommend are...?
- celery juice is helpful in curing insomnia, for rheumatism and similar problems, and combined with carrot juice is useful in the treatment of nervous afflictions – it helps to restore nerves to their normal condition. And the next veg up is...yes, you've guessed it..
- mixed with parsley it's especially good for weak eyes and the optic nerves in general – so it seems it's true what they say about carrots...
- it's often said that the carotene contained in carrots prepares the skin for a tan as the hot months approach (get scoffing those carrots now if you're going to the beach).
- is good for breath, especially for neutralising the dreaded garlic smell,
- is useful to the urinary tracts and helps the bladder and kidneys,
- as it maintains the blood vessels, particularly the capillaries, it can ease high blood pressure.
Phew. That's the veg audition over – now to the ones who are directing this show.
Did someone say 'spices'?
So here are the spices I'll be throwing into my recipe but not just because they're tasty, as I may have mentioned before. Here are a few of the benefits of the spices I've used and I'll even give my rating on the ones I've tested.
The benefits of ginger :
- when chewed raw after a meal it helps digestion, (yes, it works),
- relieves flatulence, (who wants to relieve flatulence?),
- helps nausea, (yes, this works but just don't eat too much ginger - you'll get nausea from that too),
- it's an effective pain killer for toothache, just rub it on the gum, (yes, this works. If it's bad toothache it'll bring relief but you'll still need to see a dentist),
- is effective against colds - just cut a slice, peel it and add it to tea or hot milk or any hot drink, (I presume this works as so much commercial medicine for colds have ginger in them),
- rubbed on temples it can relieve headaches, (yet to be tried).
The benefits of coriander seeds:
- the boiled seeds of coriander is a good diuretic (i.e. it makes you wee) and helps kidneys.
The benefits of turmeric:
- it's an anti septic, anti inflammatory, anti everything. If you've got a sore throat, headache, inflammation, backache, get some turmeric down you. For backache here's one remedy to try: warm some milk with two to three cardamom pods, add a pinch of turmeric and drink before going to bed - according to my source 'you will get immense relief in the morning'.
And by the way a paste made from turmeric, brown sugar and a few drops of water is a very effective face mask for keeping skin supple. Paste it on the face, wait a while and try not to scream when you look at yourself in the mirror because yes, your face has turned yellow. It'll come off though, never fear, although you may need a bit of bicarbonate of soda to prise it off. If worst comes to worst you'll look like a visitor from outer space for a day or so - one with nice soft skin though.
First, prepare rice...
So on with the show. Here's what you'll need for wild rice with vegetables:
- a big load of chicory
- a couple of carrots
- a stick or two of celery
- a handful of fresh parsley
- one inch of ginger peeled and finely chopped
- a teaspoon of turmeric mixied with a little water to make a paste (this is to stop it sticking to the pan when you put it in)
- a tablespoon of ground coriander
- Wild rice (enough for however many are eating it or how hungry you are)
The wild rice is easy peasy to prepare (although finding it is not so easy, at least where I am) – just cook it the same way you would wholemeal rice - 40-50 minutes in plenty of water on a very low heat and when there's still a little water left, turn the heat off, put the lid on the pan and leave it to cook in its own steam. Prepare it beforehand so its sitting happily soaking up its steam while you concentrate on the veg.
And why wild rice?
Well, as you can probably imagine it's very nutritional – it's bursting with Vitamin B, proteins, minerals, folic acid, potassium, magnesium – way more than even your average wholemeal rice (although in truth, I hear wild rice isn't actually rice but a 'grass').
So are you ready to start cooking? Or at least to appreciate my photos which I risked life and limb to take as I faced an angry frying pan. Let's get cooking that medicinal food then...
Peel and chop the ginger and make a tumeric paste...
throw ginger and turmeric paste into the frying with a few spoons of hot olive oil pan... (medium heat)
then wash and chop the vegetables...
add the veg and stir constantly...
after a few minutes add coriander powder and stir for a few minutes more...
add a cup or two of water with a pinch of salt (that you've boiled in the meantime) and stand back a bit...
cover and simmer for five to ten minutes or depending on how much sauce you want.
Just a couple of tips here - firstly, if your frying pan has a vendetta against you like mine does, it's best not to wear you favourite top while you cook this as you may find yourself covered with illuminous yellow blobs afterwards from the tumeric.
Secondly, regards the salt, if you can get hold of Himalayan salt or 'fart salt' as my brother calls it, your medicinal meal will be complete - it's a pink salt which is rather pongy (hence the 'fart salt' label) but full of benefits which I won't list as I'm sure you're about full of benefits by now. Suffice to say that it can be found even in supermarkets, or at least I found it in a supermarket near me which is saying a lot, I can tell you.
So there's your grub. Dish up those veg, plonk out the rice, don't forget to garnish it with the parsley and get munching.
Happy eating, happy digestion and happy spicing to you all!