Happy Diwali, everyone!
Diwali (or Deepavali, the “festival of lights”) is one of the largest and brightest festivals in India. The festival spiritually signifies the victory of good over evil. The preparations and rituals typically extend over a five-day period, but the main festival night of Diwali coincides with the darkest, new moon night of the Hindu Lunisolar month Kartika.
Before Diwali night, people clean, renovate, and decorate their homes and offices. On Diwali night, Hindus dress up in new clothes or their best outfit, light up diyas (lamps and candles) inside and outside their home, participate in family puja (prayers) typically to Lakshmi – the goddess of wealth and prosperity. After puja, fireworks follow, then a family feast including mithai (sweets), and an exchange of gifts between family members and close friends. ~ Wikipedia
While I don’t have any Indian Sweets and mithai recipes for you at this moment ( I really should bug my Indian friends for some good recipes), I am going to share my all time favorite recipe, Coconut Braised Chickpeas w/ Spinach, an Indian inspired dish adapted from Rouxbe.
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger ( 3-inch piece), grated
- 1 tbsp turmeric ( optional)
- 1/2 cup of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1 large lemon, zested and juiced
- 1 - 15 oz can of chickpeas
- 1/2 lb baby fresh spinach
- 1/2 tsp chili flakes (or to taste)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 - 14 oz can coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 bunch cilantro (to garnish)
- Heat a deep sauté pan over medium heat. Add the coconut oil and onion. Let it cook for 5 minutes or until translucent.
- Add the garlic, ginger, turmeric, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon zest and red pepper flakes. Cook for 3 minutes.
- Add the chickpeas and stir to coat in onion mixture.
- Add the spinach, a handful at a time, waiting for one handful to wilt before adding the next. After all spinach has been added, pour the coconut milk and bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Add the ground ginger and lemon juice. Taste for season.
- Serve it with basmati rice or chapati or poori bread.
- Enjoy it!
Happy Diwali Everyone!