He was scampering that was for sure. Up and down the hall with an obvious focus to those little feet. He caught me watching him and seemed to push away the raised eyebrow look and what are you up to question on my lips. I couldn’t hear anything that I shouldn’t be and he really was quite busy. So I left him to it. Back and forth, back and forth. Scurrying like a little bug, taking huge bundles 4 times his body size and wrangling it to his chosen destination.
Little Monkey was building a castle. He called out, declaring he was ready now, and in I went to inspect the wall building. Foundations looked a little shonky, brick work was a little sloppy, but there he was sitting on top of his castle, pleased as a 3 year old would be…sitting on top of his castle. Every cushion, pillow, blanket, soft anything had been dragged in and utilised. Just perfect for a mama to make a flying leap on to….
Now if you are the kind of person that likes looking into what you are eating or what your kids maybe eating, you may have looked up red food dye before. You may have also heard, that just like my little cushion carrying bug of a son, red food dye can be made from a certain bug… Or it could also be made from a coal tar derivative. Either way, these days I don’t particularly want to ingest anything that is fire engine red unless there is a really good reason to.
So with that in mind I was mighty annoyed to get a jar of tandoori paste home a while back. Only to find out, that one of the main ingredients was red food dye!
Not a tomato ingredient in there. All that lovely red was thanks to some good old red food dye. I was annoyed, as I would never normally buy a jar like this but was feeling generous as I had been at some great farmers markets and was seduced by all the lovely food stuffs around me… the seduction however, had not carried over to the tandoori paste I had just bought home.
Surely I could make something that wouldn’t give me the heebie-jeebies just looking at the colour?
Let’s give it a crack…
In a pan add
a couple of slurps of vegetable oil
diced onion, knob of ginger, and a couple of cloves of garlic
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
2 tbls tomato paste
salt to taste
chilli to taste
fry it all off for a couple of minutes, until fragrant. Then whizz to a smooth paste with a hand held mixer.
Now authentic? Perhaps not, but I think a whole more so than a jar full of red food dye, and salt.
I cooked this up with the obligatory chicken and yogurt dish, but I also had some left over and sourdough on the go. So Tandoori Flat Bread it was.
Just the thing to go and snack on while sitting on top of a castle.