It’s late. I’m tired and in dire need of a massage. I could think of 100 other things to be doing instead of writing this post right now. Number one on my priority list being sleeping. But I need to share this brilliant and exciting news. As long as I’ve been cooking professionally I’ve been dreaming of my own product line. And many many years down the road it is finally time. Phoof! My dream came true and this saturday I am launching my first ever hand made, hand designed product line at the uber cool pop up concept store Phintage by Sharon .This is a project where art lovers, vintage clothing and design fashionistas, organic skincare lovers and soul foodies can meet under one roof. And even get an angel card reading or healing while there! I have included some pictures of the work of some of the talented entrepeneurs who are represented in the space.Truly an inspiring place where like minded happy souls are sure to be nourished in every possible way. I will be there for the entire October month with my two partners in crime Patty and Jerrel. Selling the goods and serving lunch from thursday through saturday. When you are a food freak like myself nothing but the best is good enough. So I’ve been spending countless hours working on my little bundles of sunshine.
rom cooking my kedgeree mix over and over again until the consistency was just to my liking, to finding the right jars, to designing the stickers and labeling packages until my fingers were sore. But boy, I’m so proud. It amazes me what inspired passion and a whole lot of creativity can accomplish. Even on a shoe string.
So below are a few pictures of what we came up with. We’ve got limited edition honey harvested in Amsterdam, pink himalaya salt, the best quality rose water straight from the famous valley of roses in Morocco and some delicious Ayurvedic Pukka teas. As well as home cooked ghee, Sicilian olive oil from a Dutch hippie family who own a olive tree orchard on the island and incredibly delicious balsamico vinegar. Of course I’ve included a mix for the Ayurvedic staple kedgeree, which I myself eat at least three times a week. The mix includes a spice mix for all three elemental types Vata, Pitta and Kapha. So every one has their own balancing kedgeree. All you need to do is fry some onion and garlic in ghee, add your spice mix, the rice and yellow mung beans mixture and water. And tataaa, kedgeree presto!
More goodies include our choco coco sexy dates dipped in very pure chocolate with raw grated coconut and apricot rosewater and pistacio bliss balls. The spice mix for our famous chai latte, including the black tea, is now also available. Add water, fresh ginger and the milk of your choice and within 20 minutes you have your own steaming fragrant cup of chai to sip.
But the real piece the resistance is for sure the smoked rice pilaf mix with cloves, black pepper corns, cardamom pods, saffron and sweet green raisins. The inspiration for this product was a unique and completely decadent smoked basmati rice I came across at my Iranian grocer. The man, who is normally kind but very formal with me, his eyes lid up when he spoke of this rice. I could see him being transported back to his younger days when wedding celebrations in his homeland would last for days and this fragrant rice would be the star ingredient of a moorish pilaf laden with pistacio, almond slivers and dried fruits gracing the, already chock full, wedding buffet table. Ever since the day I bought this rice I have gained his respect and he gives me a nod plus a knowing wink everytime I enter his shop nowadays. Trust me, this rice is divine!
For the lunch items I wanted to include as many of the products we sell so people can taste them before buying them. So I used one of the kedgeree spice mixes as the basis for this yellow mung bean soup. I went for the Vata spice mix as Vata season is upon is. The wind is gaining in strenght, the night starts earlier and earlier and the chill in the air is no more imagined but ever so real. This time of year calls for soup. And so soup I made. Vata’s tend to have a hard time digesting beans and lentils, but they generally do really well on mung beans as these are easy to digest yet super nutritious. Vata’s need moist, unctuous, grounding foods that counter balance their dry and unstable natures. And this soup is just what the (Ayurvedic) doctor ordered.
Vata or not, give it a try. Cause in autumn we all can use some extra healthy comfort food. Stop by the pop up shop this month and get your personal spice mix to make it even better suited to your constitution. Hope to see all you Dutch Soulfoodies there! Ferdinand Bolstraat 182 in Amsterdam. I’ m finally off to bed Now. Sweet dreams. Xxx
For 6 portions
For the soup
- 300 grams yellow split mung beans (well rinsed)
- 2 to 3 teaspoons ghee
- 1 big onion finely diced
- 2 garlic cloves diced
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 2 to 3 heaped teaspoons of The Soul Food Company Vata, Pitta or Kapha spice mix (you’ll have to come by the store for this one 🙂
- 1,5 liters boiled water
- Hemp seed for garnish
- Shredded parsley, mint or coriander leaves for garnish
Heat the ghee in a medium sized pan. Fry the onion, garlic and ginger on medium heat until the onion is translucent. Add the spice mix and fry for another minute until fragrant. Now add the yellow mung beans and stir well to coat them all with the spiced ghee. Pour in the water and boil for two minutes. Lower the heat to low and simmer with a lid on for 25 to 35 minutes or until the mung beans have broken down completely. Stir occasionally and make sure the bottom of the pan doesn’t catch. Season with salt and pepper.
Very simple beetroot raita
- 1 medium cooked beetroot
- 150 ml thick yoghurt
- salt and white pepper
Mix everything together in kitchen aid until you have a bright pink smooth dressing like consistency.
To serve ladle the soup in shallow soup plates, spoon some beetroot raita on top and garnish with hemp seeds, a drizzle of olive or linseed oil and shredded parsley, mint or coriander leaves.