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Showing posts with label Indian Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Indian Food. Show all posts

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Indian-Spiced Chicken with Chickpeas and Spinach adapted from Bon Appetit



         While we're all anxiously awaiting Spring, Winter weather is still in our forecast.  Cold temperatures and Indian-inflected dishes seem made for each other.  This dish, which appeared in last month’s Bon Appetit, really drives that point home.  It’s a rich stew full of the aromas of the sub-continent but without most of the heat that gives Indian food its reputation for spice.  It’s all in one pot and if you serve it with Naan, that’s all you’ll need.  But Basmati Rice would make a great accompaniment too.   I’ve been a fan of Indian cooking ever since I was kid and working in London for a summer.  Believe it or not, the British national dish is said to be Chicken Tikka Masala, a colonial era import from, where else, India. One thing that seems universal in how Indians prepare chicken is that they inevitably skin the bird.  Since I find this a very tedious thing to do, I was pleased to see that our local Whole Foods sells skinned chicken parts.  Not just any chicken parts either but air-chilled chicken parts! (To see why that is important you only need read   http://www.chewingthefat.us.com/2012/09/vinegar-braised-chicken-on-bed-of-leeks.html.)  But as to why Indians always skin their chickens, I went to an expert.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Indian Pot Roast from Whole Foods Market


  
         If you are thinking “native American”, this recipe probably wouldn’t raise an eyebrow.  But we’ve long since stopped calling Native Americans “Indians”.  No, the name of this dish refers to the Asian sub-continent of India.  And that may be even more surprising.  The cow is considered sacred by most Hindus.  That makes beef taboo in all but two Indian states: Goa on the west coast and Kerala at the southern tip of India.  There you will find it sold in restaurants.  But in the rest of India, you’ll have to seek out international restaurants catering to Western customers who simply can’t live without their beef. 
Sacred Cow in front of McDonald's...
never inside!
Behold the Maharaja Mac
Where, I wondered, does that leave McDonald’s? There are over 250 McDonald’s in 12 Indian cities and not one Big Mac to be found in any of them.  Instead the offerings are limited to the McVeggie—bread, peas, carrots, potatoes, Indian spices, lettuce and Mayo on a sesame seed bun. The McChicken is self explanatory. The Filet o Fish sounds exactly like the one at home.  And what is the Big Mac equivalent?  Two browned chicken breasts, onions, lettuce, tomatoes and cheese on “ Sesame bedecked bread buns”.  Top of the line, it’s called the Chicken Maharaja-Mac. And it costs just 60 rupees. That’s 1.30 cents. So what’s with Whole Foods “Indian Pot Roast”?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Andouille Sausage and Shrimp with Creole Mustard Sauce adapted from Bon Appetit and Stir-Fried Green Beans with Cumin adapted from Suvir Saran



         One of the great joys of cooking for me is finding flavor combinations that work together beautifully even though they come from completely different cooking traditions.  That’s what this dinner does. It takes a wonderful Cajun dish from Bon Appetit full of shrimp and spicy sausage in a truly delicious mustard sauce and pairs it with an Indian side dish. In itself, each dish is wonderful to eat.  Put them together and you create another sensation on the plate.  And it even comes down to color: The green beans are the perfect counterpoint to the bright red peppers, pink shrimp and golden sausage.  And to top it all off, you can get the whole dish on the table in something like 35 minutes.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Simple Grilled Lamb Chops and Chickpeas in Star Anise and Date Masala


      The great challenge of home cooking is finding ways to bring new life to everyday family favorites.  At our house, this is a true mission since every meal is a candidate for this blog. We are constantly on the lookout for ways of making meals that are new and different.   One of the easiest ways of doing this is changing up the sides that go with, for instance, grilled lamb chops.
      Lamb chops are a staple at our house.  We buy trimmed loin lamb chops for an amazingly good price at Costco .  The last time I looked at our butcher’s,  1 lb. of them were the same price as the entire 10 pack that I’d bought there !  We divvy them up, use our Seal a Meal, then freeze them and pull them out and defrost them in the fridge.  They do not seem worse for wear and they are very juicy with the distinctive rich flavor that makes lamb so deliciously different from any other meat.  I marinate them in Worcestershire sauce then grill them under the broiler for 6 minutes a side. Perfection!  But last fall I was reading the New York Times Sunday magazine when I discovered a great accompaniment that really makes the simply grilled lamb chop a whole other dinner.

Monday, November 1, 2010

South Indian-style Vegetable Curry

All these beautiful vegetables go into this delicious Curry
       I don’t know what verb I’d use to describe my reaction to the latest statistics showing that Americans just don’t eat their vegetables….Appalled? Shocked? Disturbed?  I’d have to say none of the above.  I started doing a check on what I’d been eating in a week.  There was the day I had a Porchetta sandwich for lunch—devoid of even a piece of lettuce, then followed that with a dinner out of Speck and Figs, followed by the most delicious Scallops but absent any vegetables of any kind.  Of course, this day I ate both meals out.  It’s amazing how many very good restaurants don’t incorporate vegetables into their main courses.  But I guess when you can charge $9.00 for a bowl of spinach as a side, you’d be hard pressed to rationalize putting a carrot on the plate to accompany a main dish.  At home, we do a lot better.  Although we hardly qualify as vegetarians, there are always vegetables or, at minimum, a salad.   And while we have yet to put a strictly vegetarian dinner on our weekly schedule, this fantastic Vegetable Curry could change that.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Singapore-Style Shrimp Curry with Scented Rice



        Anyone with even a passing interest in Indian food will surely cross paths with Madhur Jaffrey.  An accomplished actress, she has appeared in more than 20 movies and was muse to and star in Merchant and Ivory’s marvelous films including “Shakespeare Wallah”, “Heat and Dust ” and “Cotton Mary”.  But she is also a true star in the kitchen and has written 15 books on Indian cooking including “From Curries to Kebabs: Recipes from the Indian Spice Trail” (Clarkson Potter 2003) which is where I found this recipe.