SUNDAY GOAT CURRY - you can make it any day of the week :)

Inevitably, we eat Indian food on Sundays.  While I cook Indian food well, my mom is way better than me and I aspire to cook like her some day.

This is her recipe - it is very simple, yet the results are amazingly delicious.

3 lb. goat meat (cut into 1” pieces, bone in) - if you can’t find goat meat, you can substitute with lamb.

1 tbs. cumin seeds

2 bay leaves

2 large cardamom pods or 4 small green cardamom

4 cloves

1 stick cinnamon stick

2 tbs. oil

2 red onions, sliced

1 tsp. salt and then as you need it

cayenne pepper (optional)

1 tbs. roasted cumin powder

2 tbs. coriander powder

4-5 whole green chilies

1 cup whole peeled tomatoes crushed

Heat the oil in a heavy casserole, add the whole spices and cook for about a minute.  Add the onions and salt and cook over medium heat for about 15 minutes until the onions are caramelized.

Add the cumin and coriander powder and cayenne if using.  Cook for 2 minutes until the spices are cooked through.

Now add the goat meat and cook stirring often for another 15 minutes.

Add a cup of water and the tomatoes - bring to a boil and then cook for 30 minutes.

Depending on the age of the goat, it will take anywhere from 45 minutes to and hour and a half for the meat to cook.

Simmer covered, till the meat is soft and falling off the bone.

Serve over basmati rice of Indian roti (flat bread)

Until I cook again!

Spicy Grilled Corn

This is corn season - it is a short season and you should really eat it whenever you get the chance.

This is the simplest way of preparing it.

If you have a grill - you are lucky - keep the husk on - wet it and put it right on the grill or take off the husk.  You will achieve an amazing smoky flavor.

Since I am not that lucky girl I use my stove top to cook the corn.

Most importantly, I get the corn from the farmer’s market where it was probably picked that morning and is so very sweet.

After you get an even char, season as you please.

I like lemon, salt and cayenne.

The Mexicans put chili pepper and mayonnaise.

There is of course butter.

Whatever you use, try it - its a wonderful healthful snack.

Until I eat again!

CHICKEN STEW IN TAJINE OVER WHITE BEAN SALAD

A tajine or tagine is a dish from North Africa that is named after the earthenware pot in which it is cooked.

The traditional method of cooking with a tajine is to place it over coals.

The tajine pot is formed entirely of a natural clay, which is sometimes painted or glazed. It consists of two parts: a base unit that is flat and circular with low sides and a large cone, or dome-shaped cover that sits on the base during cooking. The cover is designed to promote the return of all condensation to the bottom. Tajines can also be cooked in a conventional oven or on a stove top.

I bought mine from William Sonoma and learned the hard way that you first have to season it and not use it over high heat.  I cracked mine on the first attempt, but luckily the nice people of William Sonoma took it back and gave me a new one.

So back to the seasoning of the tajine.  You only have to do this once and so please don’t get discouraged.

Soak it in water for two hours or overnight.  Then leave it in a 200 degree oven for 2 hours.  Wash it and it is ready to use.

Always cook on a low flame - cooking in a tajine is akin to cooking in a slow cooker.  Patience is your friend here but most of the cooking is unattended and the results are gratifying.

Take pieces of chicken (with or without the bone) and marinate in:

yogurt, lemon juice, salt pepper, garlic, paprika or cayenne and dried mint if you have it or any of your favorite mild herb like parsley or cilantro.

Marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.  I marinate in the tajine itself - so its easy to start cooking it the next day.

Place it on a low flame covered and I also used some potatoes in the dish.

You don’t need to add any oil.

Cook on the lowest possible flame for about 2 hours or less depending on the size of the chicken.

I served this with a white bean salad:

boiled beans, red onions, salt and pepper with a drizzle of lemon juice.

I hope you will get a tajine, season it and use it often.

Until I eat again!

SIMPLE ROAST CHICKEN OVER A BED OF VEGETABLES

There is nothing more comforting than a roast chicken for dinner.

While it is the easiest thing to prepare, it is also the test of a good cook.  When I was in cooking school, we spent a lot of time learning how to roast the perfect chicken and I think I have mastered it.

I would like to share some of the things I learned.

Get the best chicken you can afford - from a butcher or Whole Foods.

Kosher chickens are fabulous as they are treated with salt and cook faster and have a wonderful flavor without having to work at it.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Dry the chicken with paper towel and remove any innards that might be in the cavity.

Cut up vegetables that you like - for example potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, turnips, squash - anything.

Season with salt and pepper and your favorite herbs like thyme, rosemary or marjoram.

Season the chicken inside and out with salt and pepper and add an onion, lemon and herbs in the cavity.

Now massage it generously with olive oil or butter.

Place the chicken over the vegetables and bake at 450 degrees for 40 minutes.

Turn the heat to 300 and continue cooking for another 30 minutes.

Check with a meat thermometer and it should read 160 degrees.

Let the chicken rest on the counter, tented for about 10 or 15 minutes.

Carve it and serve with vegetables.

You can removed the vegetables, add broth and or white wine to create a sauce if you like.  If you add wine, make sure you cook it out on a high heat and finish with a pat of butter for a luscious sauce.

Spoon over chicken and vegetables and dinner is served.

Until I eat again

Empanadas

I never take pictures at work but these guys are what my dreams are made of.

They make the most delicious empanadas ever and no matter where I am they find me to feed me - what’s not to love :)

Tags: empanadas

I can never get enough eggs

I can never get enough eggs

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Awadh is a new restaurant in New York

2588 Broadway (97/98 St.)

New York, NY 10025

646.861.3241, 646.861.3604

contact@awadhnyc.com

Awadh is a a region in India in Uttar Pradesh.  The Nawabs of Lucknow were in fact the Nawabs of Awadh, but were so referred to because after the reign of the third Nawab, Lucknow became the capital of their realm. The city was North India’s cultural capital; its nawabs, best remembered for their refined and extravagant lifestyles, were patrons of the arts. Under them music and dance flourished, and many monuments were erected.

This restaurant tries to replicate the cuisine and splendor of that region.

It succeeds on some levels.

The food is good.  There are things on the menu that are not available in other restaurants in NYC and I give them credit for that.

The dishes are presented in a pleasing manner.  I was not thrilled with their choice of crockery though.  White place do most justice to the vibrancy of food.

I hope that they will reconsider.

The first dish pictured is fried okra coated in chickpea batter.  It is crispy and tangy and a good way to start a meal.

Then there is shammi kebabs which are minced meat and it melts in your mouth.  My mom makes the best shammi kebabs but these are the best I have had outside my home.

Awadh is popular for their kebabs like galouti kebab and seekh kebab.  There is a famous story that galouti kebabs were designed to be so soft and melt in your mouth for a nawab who had no teeth. 

There is a dish with Indian yams roasted in the tandoor - I loved this street food in India and was thrilled when I saw it on the menu.  The yams are delicious but they add pineapple to the dish and there is way too much pineapple.  There is no need for pineapple.  India, this dish is with potatoes and yams roasted over coals.  Very easy to replicate - I wish they would do that here.

There is a nice lamb shank dish with a rich sauce and also a leg of lamb which I think the toothless nawab could enjoy - that’s how tender it was.

They have some special tea blends which are nice and uniquely presented.

For dessert, my favorite was shahi tukra which is a fried piece of bread soaked in a creamy sauce of saffron and pistachios.

While I didn’t eat everything on the menu, the kitchen is skilled and I am sure most dishes are very good.

The owner Guarav Anand is a very personable young man and his presence in the dining room is welcome and an asset.

I wish them luck and will keep you posted if I go again.

Until I eat again!

anchovy love

anchovy love

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HOME MADE PIZZA

I love pizza.

Luckily, living in New York I have access to really good pizza at all hours of the day.

But sometimes I want to make my own pizza with my own toppings and mostly no tomato sauce.

I will teach you a very easy way to make pizza at home with a little cheating.

I make my own dough often and I will share the recipe one of these days.  More often though, I buy pizza dough from my local pizzeria.  I get a nice amount for $5/-

That makes a medium size pizza.

I encourage you to buy a pizza stone - it makes a whole lot of difference mimicking the high heat of the pizza oven.

I heat the stone at 450 degrees.

Then I spread the dough on the hot stone.  You don’t have to put any oil - the pizza will release easily.  Sometimes I do sprinkle some corn meal - it gives a lovely crunch to the crust.

Drizzle some olive oil and kosher or coarse salt.  Then the sky is the limit.  I like to top my pie with roasted peppers, onions, sausage or pepperoni.  Most importantly, whatever you put on the pizza - add some freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Mozzarella of course if always a great thing.

Cook for about 10 minutes in the 450 degrees oven and you have piping hot pizza.

Once you have the dough, you can always make calzones, individual pizzas or foccacia which is thicker and chewier.

I hope you try this - you will love it.

Until I eat again!

Yum

Yum

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