Curried Lentil-Potato Cobbler with Pumpkin and Tomatoes and Filo Top Crust

Long name!

I have looked at this recipe a couple of times and was never sure what to make of it. The ingredient combination just seemed so strange. But, a few weeks ago, during our last true cold spell of the season (I hope), I went ahead and made it.

My first reaction on tasting it was that I could be a little more liberal with the seasoning next time. I am always cautious and cut back strong seasonings and then adjust up as needed on successive makings of a dish until I find my perfect combination. But . . . that said, the day-after leftovers at lunch (and the next few days) were really quite delicious. I think this is one of those recipes that is better the next day. It is also remarkably “comfort” food, not just in the regular sense, but it really settles well and comforts the stomach, even if you are feeling just fine. Finally, it is incredibly filling. Next time I make it, I will need to try cutting the recipe in half.

It calls for filo crust on the top. One of the hallmarks of these days is that weird things are getting hit by “supply chain issues.” Dough in the freezer section seemed to be one of the things. Great barren spots on the shelves. I could not find filo dough but could find puff pastry. Apparently filo is a more delicate crust. Puff pastry worked just fine with this hearty dish, including with reheating in successive days.

The recipe is from the Passionate Vegetarian, by Crescent Dragonwagon, page 255.

Ingredient List
bay leaf
butter (has to be a typo here in the recipe — change teaspoons to tablespoons)
black or brown mustard seeds (not readily available in my grocery stores)
cumin seeds
ground coriander
ground turmeric
cayenne pepper
ground cloves
black pepper
maple syrup
vegetable stock
filo dough (or puff pastry)

In other news, Putin. Hindsight is 20/20, but, nonetheless–we knew he was building up along the border with Ukraine. I remember reading it in the news over and over again and his dismissals. We should have hit him hard with sanctions back then and just made it unacceptable to have a “special military exercise” that involved a military buildup along the border–as unacceptable as the subsequent invasion. Once he invaded Ukraine, we suddenly had the dilemma of our own military intervention and worrying about NATO triggers. Hopefully, we will learn our lesson. Hopefully, we have the opportunity to learn our lesson. Unfortunately, Ukraine is paying the cost, now and later. My heart breaks for them.

In the blog post, Towards a Decoupled Peace, today on IntLawGrrls, Cecilia Marcela Bailliet mentions the book The Age of UnPeace by Mark Leonard. Apparently, the Leonard puts forth a theory that our increased global connections have caused increased conflict instead of greater understanding. I need to read the book so that I know what he actually says, but rather than severing ties preemptively as it appears he may be suggesting, wouldn’t it be better to do what all emergency workers know — build in redundancy? This would allow us the benefit of continuing to build connections while reducing the risk of being overly reliant on any one tie. I know this is a simplification (especially without having read Leonard’s book, yet), but–back to the filo dough and also the fact that we have enabled the creation of our own power-hungry monster in Amazon–it started me thinking more about my own connections and sourcing, resilience and dependencies.

Beautiful day out today. I pulled some leaves out of the creek out back and realized that, another day, I actually need to dig up a small tree and mound of dirt to restore good flow to the water. It wasn’t just leaves across the creek. I hate it when people throw things like cinder blocks and metal street sign posts (??) into a creek bed. Why?