I have an old friend I’ll call S.
She lives in NH and I live in MA and we try to get together every so often.
Whenever we meet, I pass a small Indian market en route; every time,
I mention to her “one day we should go there –
you would love the array of spices etc”.
To which she replies: “yes, and then you can come to my house
and show me how to use them”!
We’ve been talking about this for months, but you know how that goes –
reality gets in the way. Yesterday we finally managed to pull it off.
A dinner at S’s house is never for two; between her kids and friends,
it ended up a small feast — just in time for the New Year.
This was a new and welcome challenge for me, but I was nervous!
I used a couple of recipes I’d bookmarked in the past, and a couple I got from newfound bloggers who are also participating in Nupur’s delightful marathon.
I did tone down the heat — my own tolerance has been slowly but steadily acquired, and I didn’t know most of the attendees well enough to gauge how heat would be received!
In restrospect, I would add more chilies. Otherwise very few changes were made; where they were, they are so noted.
Also, the photos aren’t the greatest I’ve ever taken
Please do visit these talented ladies for the original recipes and better pics,
and please add all the chilies!
On the menu:
Mathangi’s decadent Dal Makhani ~ the only change here was fewer kidney beans.
If you’re like me and always skimp on the butter in the name of health, I say, try it this way just once. Sometimes it’s healthier to be sinful
dear Sudha’s Veg Biryani ~ I did add a fruit-and-nut garnish which was not exactly ‘sprinkled’, more like tossed on! And it’s obvious there is no turmeric in my version. I have never tried to cook five Indian dishes simultaneously — for a crowd to boot. I suspect turmeric isn’t the only thing I missed last night
Otherwise, this one is completely Sudha’s, and completely delicious!
Palak Paneer from Sandeepa, the best I’ve ever tasted.
This was nothing short of perfect, even though it had no milk — yup, I forgot it.
We did not suffer!
Ashwini’s Punjabi Chole, to which I added more tomato than intended ~ hence the reddish tone. I loved the new flavor from the tea bag, Ashwini!
Here’s the whole kit and kaboodle:
We also had an assortment of chutneys that S’s friend brought, bottled — I would call them sauces more than chutneys and I think she brought seven kinds! And some hot mango pickle from a jar (could not get to dear ISG’s for this!).
I have seen so many spreads from other blogs over the years — it’s always been a secret desire of mine — to post my own. Thank you all, for sharing your encouragement, inspiration, kindness, and friendship.
Oh, and of course — your wonderful recipes, too!
So last but not least, my own little recipe:
Radish and Snap Pea Saute
don’t forget the mustard seed ~ yup, I did!
1 small onion, diced
2 bunches fresh red radishes, scrubbed, trimmed, and quartered
(if the greens are really fresh, you can save them for Anita’s haak
[though I like mine best with kohlrabi greens -- not to mention the fab
sambhar that makes... oh my, for another day!] or add to this dish at the end)
2 handfuls fresh snap peas, washed
1 tsp canola oil
1 tsp mustard seed
1 tsp cumin seed
3-4 slit green chiles
a dozen curry leaves, more if really aromatic
salt to taste
As easy as it sounds:
Heat the oil and do the tadka. Add onion and saute a few minutes, until it begins to brown. Add radishes and saute a few minutes more, until the red starts fading to pink. Toss in the peas and saute a few minutes more, until the peas take on a brighter green color — add a sprinkle of water if necessary to avoid burning.
Cook this to your preference — I like it a bit crunchy — about fifteen minutes all told.
Salt to taste and serve hot.
I have enjoyed this marathon of blogging, especially after a long sojurn.
Of course life unexpectedly gets in the way at all times; the kids’ dad was in a car accident today. While there were no serious injuries, I may be out of the kitchen for a day or two, so… I hope this will be ok to serve as the rest of my marathon recipes. Thank you for all the kind comments — I will be back in short order, visiting all the other marathoners, and cooking up something special in a surprise gift ~ that made my day today!
I am wishing you all a very happy and healthy new year!