Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Indian feasting part 1

For those of you bored by my continual gluttony and reluctant to read through an invariably long-winded discussion of the Indian cooking class I took, I first present proof that I don't just spend my time stuffing my face:
Sometimes I do take a break and interrupt my hands from their regular plate-to-mouth route to play with yarn. On the left is the broadripple sock (I seem to have mastered my ick face and forgiven the yarn for the brief moments of dinge) and on the right is the start of my fern colored sleeve for my Ribby Cardigan. I'm knitting it in the round using Magic Loop and Denise interchangeable Needles. It would probably be a bit easier if I was using Addi Turbos since there wouldn't be the little stiff join to deal with. I also had to rip out the sleeve down to where the increases started because I realized that in translating the pattern from flat knitting to in-the-round I hadn't changed the location of the increases (the original budgeted in two stitches on either side of the increase for seaming). But with worsted weight yarn, the knitting goes so comparatively fast that I didn't even get very pissy about my mistake.

Now, back to food.
On Sunday I learned to make this:
Oh yea, and this too:
My friend Ami's co-worker Sarah's sister Heidi's Mother-in-Law (follow that?) Bhanu Hajratwala taught the class.

Here is Bhanu with her three-year-old assistant chapatti maker granddaughter Zoe:
I'm not going to do a blow by blow of the class right now (I think I'd be typing all day)--I'll save that for when I attempt to recreate the dishes at home. But I'll tempt you to come back by listing the menu:

Appetizer: Aloo Tikka (potato patties)
Drink: Mango Lassi
Salad: Layered Kachoombar
Rice: Shahi Vegetable Pulau (also known as Biryani)
Vegetable: Bhinda Bataka (okra)
Meat: Chicken Curry
Chutney: Fresh Coriander Chutney
Bread: Fresh Chappaties
Desert: Kopra Paak (coconut squares)

I plan to attempt to recreate all of the above except the salad and the desert.
I was underwhelmed by the salad--very pretty and jewel-like in the bowl, but not a hell of a lot of flavor, just sort of a cool crunch. I'd prefer a standard Raita; I think it cools down the chili heat better and tastes more interesting.

And Indian deserts and I just don't get along very well...they are so sweet they make me feel like I'm going to go into a diabetic coma after one taste.

Today I plan to hit the Indian grocery store Foods of India (much to my very pissy discovery Indian grocery stores in Ann Arbor are not open on Mondays....grrrr) and get some missing ingredients--fresh tumeric root, star anise, ghee--which will hopefully enable me to make at least the rice (probably my favorite thing from the menu we cooked) and the Lassi and possibly also the chicken curry and the aloo tikka, though the last two may have to wait for another day.


Anonymous said...

After reading this, I must show you the story, "Mrs. Battacharya's Chapati Zap Machine" in a book of Iris's. It's a lot of fun.

Kimberly said...

ooo ooo.. you must give me the mango lassi recipe!! I will love you forever!! :D