rooting for Aarti Sequeira on the Next Food Network Star really paid off. Last night, I made my first recipe from her show, and people, believe me when I tell you that this was fabulous. My husband went back for seconds, and I think even thirds...and we're not big on seconds around here! These sloppy joes have a deep, warm flavor from the garam masala spice mix, and a wonderful crunch and sweetness from the toasted nuts and raisins. I cannot imagine how I will ever like a different sloppy joe as much!
This recipe went quicker for me than the website indicated -- it took just 45 minutes. The orignal recipe called for ground turkey....but my grocery store never got in their shipment of ground turkey. So, to keep this healthy and economical, I used a mixture of 90% lean beef and 1 can of cannellini beans. It turned out great, and I'd go ahead with that mix again! I also think this would be tasty with some lentils cooked right in the sauce, and could even be made that way to be completely vegetarian. I served this on whole-wheat English muffins, but if you want a bigger sandwich, by all means, get a good hamburger bun or sandwich roll! Just promise me you'll try this one...it's that good.
Bombay Sloppy Joes
adapted from http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/aarti-sequeira/sloppy-bombay-joes-recipe/index.html
2 tsp canola oil
1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, pushed through a press
1/2 serrano chile, seeded and well minced
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp sweet paprika
1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 cup water
2 tsp canola oil, divided
1/4 cup peanuts, pistachios, or cashews
1/4 cup raisins
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 large white onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 serrano chile, seeds intact (for more heat, you can finely dice the second half of the pepper)
1/2 pound 90% lean ground beef
1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 tsp honey
1/4 cup fat-free half-and-half
a few Tbsp finely chopped cilantro
4-5 hamburger buns or whole wheat English muffins, buttered (if desired) and toasted
1. Begin by making the sauce. Heat 2 tsp canola oil over medium heat and a medium saucepan. Add the garlic, ginger, and minced serrano chile, and cook a couple of minutes, until the garlic and ginger become fragrant and take on a slight hint of color.
2. Add the 1 tsp garam masala and the 1/2 tsp paprika, and cook for 30 seconds, until the spices become fragrant.
3. Add the tomato sauce and 1 cup of water. Bring to boil, and then reduce the heat so the sauce just simmers. Cook for 15 minutes, until the sauce is thickened.
4. Meanwhile, in a large non-stick skillet, heat 1 tsp canola oil over medium heat. When the oil is good and hot, add in the nuts and raisins and 1 Tbsp of water. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the water has evaporated, the nuts have toasted, and the raisins have plumped up. Set the nut and raisin mixture aside.
5. Add a second teaspoon of oil to the skillet. When it has heated, add the cumin seeds. Allow them to sizzle for 1 minutes, and then add the minced onion and red bell pepper.
6. Cook for 5-7 minutes, until the vegetables have softened and just started to take on color.
7. Add the ground beef, and cook for 5 minutes, until the meat becomes opaque.
8. At this point, the sauce should be ready. Add the sauce and the beans to the skillet, and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat so the mixture just simmers. Cook for another 10 minutes, to allow the mixture to become quite thick.
9. Remove from the heat, and add in the honey. Gradually add in the half-and-half. Stir through and taste, and then salt as necessary.
10. Serve on English muffins or buns, topped with a bit of finely topped cilantro.