Some of the most creative dishes I have made was when I was in culinary school. For one, the pantry was fully stocked, meats were only a one to two day order away, and the minds of the chef instructors was hardly even tapped to its full potential. It’s true that some of it did get lost in work, life, pregnancy, and motherhood after I graduated. But, I am happy to say that I still got it!
The moment I saw blood oranges at Whole Foods I knew I had to have them. It’s just one of those ingredients that exude creativity. It’s interesting depth of citrus and berry flavors make it a perfect canvas to mix with aromatics such as ginger and spices- in this case, curry powder.
I decided to bring curry powder into this mix for two reasons.
- You will never see me make a true indian dish with curry powder. This ingredient is specifically reserved for its 1 stop shop for a variety of spices in 1 easy bottle.
- Curry powder pairs really well with oranges. The citrus brightens up some of the usual suspects in curry powder such as cardamom and coriander.
My original idea was to create a glaze I could caramelize over a roast chicken, but the idea of tossing sweet potatoes over a bed of crispy kale chips and yogurt came to me the night before. I was racking my brain to move past, what had now become, my comfort zone of easy weeknight dinners. It hit me that I wasn’t making dishes like I did in school. Walking in with the pressure on my shoulders to out do what I did day before. Thinking on the spot to combine textures and flavors to make a meal interesting. Why did I have to use blood oranges for the main course? Why not highlight it in a side dish.
I mentally went through my refrigerator and remembered the yogurt, kale, and sweet potatoes. The rest was history.
This dish is accompaniment a great side to your Sunday night dinner or even a meal on its own. In fact, I had it for lunch the very same day. Its filling and warm from the spices and the sweet potatoes, yet cool and refreshing from the yogurt on the bottom.
Creating this dish really gave me the sense that I still got it. I always surprised myself in Culinary School at how my visions for a dish really did come true. This was the case for my savory recipe using blood oranges. I hope to be equally surprised with my dessert using these citrus jewels. Stay tuned!