The other night, I was in need of a fast and easy recipe, so I did a quick web search and found an Indian-inspired dish: Butter Chickpea Curry. It had pretty good reviews, and I happened to have all the ingredients on hand (except I used plain yogurt instead of milk/cream and instead of using curry powder I used a mixture of my own spices – I never keep curry powder around). It came out pretty well and I was glad I went out on a limb and tried it.
It is rare for me to try an Indian recipe off of the web – I tend to stick with tried and true family recipes more. Somehow I feel that I’m “cheating” if I don’t make an entire Indian recipe from scratch. However, my husband even enjoyed this one, so maybe I’ll make it again! I did spice it up a bit more than the original recipe.
Do you have a favorite resource for Indian dishes? Do you ever try random web recipes?
On nights when I have no idea what to cook, this recipe for Indian style lentils has become my faithful standby. My Mother-in-Law taught me how to make it, and I’ll always be grateful! It’s quick and simple to make, and always turns out great – well, except for that one time when I forgot I was using red chili powder from India (instead of the kind I was used to from our grocery store) and it was so spicy we had smoke coming out of our ears! So hopefully you won’t make that mistake!
1 cup of lentils (yellow split peas – washed and drained)
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. coriander powder
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
1 & 1/2 tsp sambar powder
1 medium onion, chopped
1 & 1/2 tsp. garlic paste
1 & 1/2 tsp. ginger paste
2 small tomatoes, chopped
1-2 green chilies -split in half
- salt to taste
Fry the following ingredients in a small amount of oil in a separate skillet & keep aside:
3-4 dried red chilies
1 tsp. mustard seeds
- 1-2 curry leaves
Mix all of the above ingredients in a pressure cooker.* Cover with water. Seal pressure cooker and boil on high heat until you hear two “whistles.” (about 5-7 min). Allow the pressure cooker to cool off completely before opening it.** Add some water (to bring to desired consistency) and bring to a boil with the lid removed.
Add the fried spices to the dhal mixture and stir. Serve over rice. Tastes great with ghee and mango pickle!
*If you don’t have a pressure cooker, boil the ingredients until the lentils become soft.
**Make sure to follow the directions that came on for your specific pressure cooker.
I just wanted to report back that the Thanksgiving Tandoori Turkey
was a success! I was a bit nervous to make my first whole Turkey -and that with a recipe I’ve never tried before. The photo above was taken just before we dove in. We had a total of 8 people. Most of them were from various countries. We had 4 friends from India (including my husband), two from America (including myself), one from Holland and one from Malaysia.
We had a great time together. It was a different Thanksgiving for me and my husband – to be out on our own and not around any of our family, but I’m sure we made memories that we’ll talk about for along time. Who knows, maybe Tandoori Turkey will become our tradition! Isn’t that what an intercultural marriage is all about – taking the best of both worlds?!
I got inspired by yesterday’s post about Thanksgiving dinner with an Indian twist. I began to wonder, what can I serve with the Tandoori Turkey that will stand up to the strong flavors…
After some research, here are a few ideas I’ve found to help complete Thanksgiving Indian style:
I’m definitely going to try a cranberry chutney recipe and a pumpkin curry! When I was carving pumpkins for Halloween, my MIL asked me if I was going to use any for pumpkin curry. I had never heard of such a dish, but now I think I must try it!
So if you live in the USA, you know that Thanksgiving is on Thursday! How is it already the end of November?
Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, but this year my husband and I are on our own for Thanksgiving. We get to go to visit my family for Christmas, but it is too far to make two trips so close together! So in the spirit of intercultural marriages, and bring both cultures to the “table” – so to speak – I am planning to make my first ever whole Turkey with an Indian twist!
Maybe some of you are fans of the American version of the Japanese show “Iron Chef.” If you tuned in for the Thanksgiving special, you saw one of the chefs prepare a Tandoori Turkey. What better inspiration could I ask for?
So I rounded up a few recipes, and if you’re still struggling to come up with something interesting this Thanksgiving, give one of these recipes a try. Better start thawing that turkey right now!
(whole turkey recipe)
(uses tandoori cutlets)
While my best source for Indian recipes has come from my Mother-in-Law & other Indian relatives, I have found an Indian cookbook that I love! It was given to me by my husband’s aunt and uncle. It is a beautiful book, cover to cover.
The recipes are basic and easy to follow – and so far, I’ve had good success with what I’ve tried. The ingredients are usually readily available in an urban area. Recipes come from all over India.
An added feature is that some of the recipes contain nutritional information and are indicated as “low-fat recipes,” which is very helpful in menu planning, plus there is a list of suppliers in the back of the book. The only thing that I don’t like about the book is that they don’t always use the Indian names for the dishes. They might call Biryani “Rice Layered with Chicken.” I suppose it must be catered towards Western cooks. But overall, it is my favorite Indian cookbook!
The recipes are easy to prepare, and for a non-Indian learning to cook Indian food, it has been a lifesaver. There are beautiful full-color photos of each dish and also of the step-by-step process. I’d recommend it to anyone who wants to impress their Indian husband/wife, or in-laws! Click here to find a copy.