Hearty and vegan? Is it possible? Yes, of course! We pulled recipes from a few vegan cookbooks hitting the market this year and asked one of our food photographers and stylists, Maria Siriano, who happens to be vegan, for her thoughts on the recipes.
Vegan: The Cookbook by Jean-Christian Jury is a tour de force of vegan cuisine inspired by the culinary traditions from every corner of the globe. This cookbook is part of the Phaidon culinary bible series so it's a big one, packing in around 500 recipes featuring a range of ingredients and techniques. We loved the kidney bean and coconut curry, a recipe hailing from the culinary traditions of Chad — although you'll find similar dishes of beans stewed in coconut milk throughout the world — for its simplicity and straightforward flavors.
Testing Notes from Maria
Kidney beans are typically confined to chili, but they are surprisingly right at home in this Chadian bean and coconut dish. The base of the dish is flavored with an aromatic combination of cardamon, garlic, curry, and green chili. If you're a fan of the floral flavors of Thai curries, this not-too-spicy dish is a great addition to your meal plan. As for heartiness, the beans do what beans do best — they fill you up and, along with the onions, they give this dish a pleasing chunky texture. With some fragrant jasmine rice, it is an extremely filling meal!
Kidney Bean and Coconut Curry
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 medium red onions, chopped
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
2 cups coconut milk
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon yellow curry powder
1 medium jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
Cooked basmati or jasmine rice, for serving
Drain and rinse the soaked kidney beans. Fill a large saucepan with enough water to cover the kidney beans and bring to a boil. Add the beans and simmer over low heat until tender, about 1 hour. Drain and set aside.
Heat the oil in the same saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the reserved kidney beans, coconut milk, cardamom, garlic, curry powder, and jalapeño. Season with salt, stir to combine, and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes. Garnish with the cilantro and serve with rice.
- Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Reprinted with permission from Vegan: The Cookbook by Jean-Christian Jury, copyright (c) 2016. Published by Phaidon Press.