A Magical Night
A few weeks ago, my husband and I made good on the Christmas gifts we gave to our children and their significant others by taking them to see/hear the Des Moines Symphony play live to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone at the Des Moines Civic Center. We are all huge Harry Potter Fans (although, I think I may be the biggest one-just saying) and this was a magical night together as a family.
One of the struggles we sometimes face when we’re all together is where or what we are going to eat. I have many food allergies and it can be difficult to find a restaurant that will accommodate everyone’s needs and wants. Our son and daughter-in-law introduced us to Cool Basil in Clive, serving Thai cuisine just west of 86th Street north of I-235.
My husband and I have enjoyed several Thai places, but were not sure if the rest of our family would like it or not. Cool Basil was a hit with everyone. Not only do they have traditional Thai, but also offer dishes like Honey Chicken and other options for those who do not necessarily like curries, stirfry and sushi. Preparing many dishes from scratch, I can eat a variety of meals there without worrying how I will feel later. They can also adjust the spiciness to the customer’s liking.
How I found curries
I spent 3 weeks in India during my undergraduate studies at the University of Northern Iowa. I fell in love with the food-especially the curries that are regularly served. As a person who is cold all the time, their nourishing, penetrating warmth is always welcome. While coconut milk is definitely not a local food in Iowa, it is used extensively in warmer climates where coconut is grown (and is a great alternative for me). Regular milk or a combination of heavy cream and milk could also be used.
Curries are especially warming this time of year and I like to add coconut milk to a lot of my green vegetables, making a soup or curry out of them. The fat in coconut milk also helps the body absorb Vitamins A, D, E and K-all needed for our bodies to function optimally. The spices are also packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients to keep the our bodies and immune system healthy and strong.
Curries are easy and quick to make. They require a few vegetables, meat if you like, spices and coconut milk. This recipe includes peas we froze and onions we dehydrated from our garden. If snow or sugar snap peas are not available, a regular bag of frozen peas would work too. Frozen or canned carrots would work as well. Just remember, raw and frozen vegetables take longer to cook than canned ones do. You may have to adjust the cooking time.
Magical nourishment for the heart
I made this on a night when it was subzero outside and I wanted something quick, warm and nourishing. I had a whole meal ready in 40 minutes (an extra 10 minutes for the fish). It hit the spot, warming my heart with memories of family, friends around the world and our magical night with Harry Potter and the Des Moines Symphony.