Monday, March 24, 2014

indian, korean, and some "running"

As I mentioned in my last post, we were invited for an Indian dinner with some friends. I knew it would be wonderful, but I had no idea just how wonderful. First of all, Karla and Sam set the tone with their beautiful table:

Even their back yard is beautiful and peaceful:

I can just imagine looking out at this while drinking tea in my bathrobe

I don't even know where to start with the food. I'll just let the pictures do the talking.

and what to drink? beer beer and more beer

cauliflower, something with chickpeas and tomatoes

dal, something with baby eggplants

more dal(?), saag paneer (with tofu instead of the paneer)

two kinds of rice and ?????

grilled lamb

i tried to take just a little of everything, but my plate was still full

and some of us even had authentic clothes from india

There were four couples, and everyone contributed something. I brought what our family calls Indian cauliflower, but what Madhur Jaffrey calls Cauliflower With Fennel and Mustard Seeds, or baghari phool gobi.

Many, many years ago, I spent the day at a friend's house learning how to cook Indian food. It was so long ago that our little kids were playing Star Trek under the table and the girls were pissed because the boys made them stay in the cargo bay. Anyway, Manju had this book that I tried to find but couldn't anywhere. Fast forward a few years, and when I was going through my mom's cookbooks after she died, what did I find but:

there is a revised version out, but i love this original

doesn't look like much, but it is a taste sensation

You might want to make this, so here is the recipe for Cauliflower With Fennel and Mustard Seeds:

1 large or 1.5 medium cauliflower heads
7 T vegetable oil (I use about 4)
2 tsp whole fennel seeds
1 T whole black mustard seeds (you will probably need to go to a specialty store for these)
1 T very finely minced garlic
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
about 1 tsp salt
4 T water

Cut the cauliflower into delicate flowerets that are no longer than 2 inches, no wider at the head than an inch and about 1/3 inch thick.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. (I go about medium-high). When hot, put in the fennel and mustard seeds. It will take a few minutes, but when the mustard seeds begin to pop, put in the garlic. Stir and fry until the garlic pieces are lightly browned. Add the turmeric and cayenne. Stir once and quickly put in the cauliflower, salt, and about 1/4 cup of water. Stir and cook on medium (med-hi) heat for 6-7 minutes or until cauliflower is just done. It should retain its crispness and there should be no liquid left. If the water evaporates before the cauliflower is done, add a little more.

This recipe serves 6, is delicious reheated the next day, and keeps in the fridge for several days - if you can keep it around that long.

Everyone left the party with leftovers, and all I had to do was make some basmati rice for Sunday dinner. Oh, and whip up another batch of the cauliflower since it was all gone:

even better the next day

Tonight's dinner was something that Emily has been talking about for awhile: Korean short ribs. (Click on her name to take you to the blog post where she discusses it and can get you to the recipe.) All I can say is OMG. Once I found out (from the butcher at the third store that I went to) that short ribs were beef, the directions were pretty simple. I put it all in the crockpot this morning, and it smelled heavenly when I got home from work. They were fall-off-the-bone-melt-in-your-mouth. I am looking forward to leftovers.

literally fell off the bone. if your dog wants these, let me know!

short ribs minus the bones

with some roasted mini-peppers and leftover basmati rice. so much for paleo

And now the running (walking really pretty fast):  After my trips around Zorinsky last Friday afternoon,  I spent Saturday recovering and then headed out on Sunday. What a difference a few days make: I went from capris to long pants, from a tank with a pullover to a tee with a pullover and a jacket and gloves. I wiped my nose on every inch of my sleeves and collar, and had a stripe down my leg from a mis-timed snot rocket. Running is so sexy. But getting a long run and a short run in over the weekend sure feels good.


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1 comment:

  1. Aside from us being the nerdiest kids in the history of ever, playing Star Trek in the basement was fun -- especially with the super hot son of your culinary instructor.