As I have gotten older and exposed to different cuisines, I have found that the sauces, meats, spices and breads at Indian restaurants to be craveable and extremely delicious. So when it came time to make my birthday and Christmas lists, I found that Indian cookbooks were at the top. I also thought that focusing on one type of cuisine might also give me focus and motivation for the blog.
So my friends and family came through with the cookbooks and I got 2 different Indian cookbooks: Indian Cooking by Madhur Jaffrey and Complete Indian Cooking by Meena Pathak. After looking through both, I got inspired to learn how to cook these meals at home.
The first thing I did was to raid my spices and make a list of everything that I would need. I then headed out to Cost Plus Word Market and stocked up on cardamom pods & powder, coriander, cumin, turmeric, and anything else that sounded good - I even found Kadhai to serve my creations in!
Then the hard part, what to make first? I decided to go with something relatively easy and not super spicy. The winner was Mughlai Chicken with Almonds and Raisins (page 96 of Madhur Jaffrey's book) and Jeer pulav, rice flavored with cumin seeds (page 97 of Meena Pathak's book). I did cheat and buy already prepared naan (which was so-so) - I will attempt homemade naan in the future.
The sauce in the chicken was creamy and had a slight smokey flavor from the almonds and spices and the rice was extremely easy to make and very forgiving too. I did a lot of the prep work ahead of time - chopping the chicken and onions, measuring the spices and making an almond paste. Both dishes were complete successes! They were restaurant quality and super yummy!! I would definitely make these again and serve them for guests.
So here is my New Year's resolution: "To make at least 3 dishes a month and blog about them".
Here is to a new flavor adventure in the new year!