Posts Tagged With: curry

Ruth Is Right

Sharwoods Curry with yogurt

A friend’s cool, dark basement was a welcome place to spend a sultry summer evening. After watching some of a recording of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s celebration, our host popped in the dvd I had brought along. The Lunchbox came out in 2013, but I’d never heard of it. If you have an interest in foreign places and/or enjoy food for more than just nourishment, you might like the movie.

The story was set in India so now, naturally, we are craving curries, paneer, and chapati.  Since the last two recipes from Ruth Reichl’s book, Tender at the Bone, have recently provided success in our kitchen, I thought I would see what she has to say about Indian food. At the end of one of Gourmet‘s foodie travel videos, Reichl gives instruction for a simple tandoori-style entree that you can make at home.

Rather than insisting you purchase a zillion spices to create an imitation of the complex flavors of an Indian restaurant, she claims that the bottled sauces at your grocery store will be sufficient. Besides a bottle of Vindaloo sauce, you need yogurt, cilantro, and mint to season your chicken.  You should let the skinless chicken marinade for at least 40 minutes.

The cooking method almost convinced me to set the recipe aside. Summer temperatures in July do not encourage one to use the oven, much less an oven set to 500*F.  However, after a torrential downpour last night, the outside temperatures have dropped to near 70* F. Because I was still afraid of setting off the smoke alarm,  I didn’t leave the chicken in long enough for it to get the prescribed char.

I’ve got to work on the Basmati rice. But, alongside the curried vegetables, and the slices of raw tomato and avocado, the false-tandoori chicken was satisfying.

 

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Categories: Chicken, Entertainment, Food and drink, Herbs and Spices, Rice, sauces & condiments | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Technical Challenge

mu-shu-pork

Sometimes when I’m trying out a new recipe, I have only a vague idea of how it is supposed to turn out. Because I only have a photograph of the final product, my mind doesn’t always trust the instructions when my eyes watch the ingredients changing into different shapes and textures along the way.

This weekend I had chosen to attempt Mu-Shu pork with curry-scented pancakes. One of my coworkers had pointed out the entree on the menu of a local Chinese restaurant, and a few days later I had found the recipes in an old Martha Stewart magazine.

After lining up all the ingredients to make sure I had everything necessary, I read the recipe for the pancakes. I had to go through the instructions several times, because it sounded like there were unnecessary steps. If it was a pancake you would think that you could just make a liquid batter. However, the instrucions said to form what sounded like a tortilla, brush one side with sesame oil, then put a second flattened disk of dough on top of the first. My dough was almost too wet, so I added enough flour that I could handle it.

While my fingers fought the sticky dough, I reflected on technical challenges that amateur bakers in the GBBO episodes face. The contestants are given a minimal amount of time to bake a (usually) unfamiliar product with just a list of ingredients and very basic instructions. My time limit was self-imposed rather than one given by a television show judge, though. Somehow the doubled-up disks made their way to the frying pan, and I could even peel them apart later when the pork-and-vegetable filling and the balsamic-plum sauce were ready.

If I choose to prepare Mu-Shu pork in the future, I think I’ll look at some other recipes to see if other cooks follow the same method for curry-scented pancakes, or if the sandwich method is something that can be improved upon.

Can you think of any reason not to just make a pour batter or a single layer tortilla instead?

 

Categories: Bread, Food and drink, Pork | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Coconut Tiki Masala

Just in case you need some inspiration while thinking up next week’s menu and making your shopping list…

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frozen chicken breast tenderloins

cajun seasoning

curry paste or powder or bottled sauce

bunch green onions, sliced

frozen peas & carrots

coconut cream

garnish: chopped cilantro, honey roasted peanuts, raisins

 

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Categories: Chicken, Food and drink, Herbs and Spices, Rice, sauces & condiments, Shopping, Vegetables | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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