Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bobotie and Sambal

Saturday night is 'international night' at our house, for dinner at least. I use a 4 week rotating calendar to plan our meals, so that's 4 different international dishes each month. We've got the usual stuff (stroganoff, curry, stir fry) but I wanted something else a little more exotic. When I ran across a recipe for bobotie in our "Around the World Cookbook" I knew I'd found what I was looking for. But it needed a side. Foodnetwork.com is the first place I go to find recipes and that's where I found this recipe for South African Sambal.

Of course I've modified it, though this time it was a serendipitous mistake rather than an intentional change. First, it turned out that I didn't have enough apples so I added some sliced grapes I had on hand to make up for the missing sweetness. Then I accidentally added the salt after the soak and squeeze rather then before. But it turned out to be a really nice combination of salty and sweet so I kept it along with a few other changes. Here's my version:

2 cups grated carrots
2 cups grated apples
1/4 cup bottle lemon juice (it just gets discarded so no sense using the good stuff here!)
Kosher salt
1 cup black grapes, halved
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 (scant) tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup rice vinegar
Juice of one lemon (works out great as the bobotie calls for zest but no juice)
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Toss carrots and apples with lemon juice and 1 teaspoon salt, let sit 1/2 hour (about, I usually only manage 15 minutes), then squeeze with hands and discard any excess liquid. Add the grapes and cilantro. Combine remaining ingredients plus 1/2 teaspoon salt in a small bowl and mix well. Add to the salad and toss. Allow to sit refrigerated for several hours before serving (I almost never have time to do that!)

I've used blackberries (see photo) and other types of grapes, but black grapes are my favorite, if I can get them. Altogether it's a nice salty, sweet, sour, and spicy side and a vast improvement on the typical carrot/raisin/mayo salad, IMHO! Enjoy!

How do you plan your meals? Does this sound like something you'd like to try?

1 comment:

CritterLady said...

This sounds yummy and different! I look forward to trying it. Thanks for sharing it. :o)