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Found 988 results

  1. Numerous have been the occasions when our patrons have explained their absence during the summer months with ,' its too hot for Indian food'. What do you think ? I have some views on this but would like to hear from all you wonderful people out there. Thanks
  2. wgallois

    Special juices

    Has there ever been a discussion of Indian juice bars on the board? I have a question relating to so-called 'special juices' which are sometimes on offer in such places. In Indian-run juice bars in the Emirates these often have great names, but there is often no clue as to what kind of fruit cocktail they consist of, and I am curious as to whether there exists a set of names that Indians across the world would recognise. I know that a 'Lexus' consists of mango and avocado juice with ice cream, but what about a 'Disco', a 'Titanic', a 'www', a 'Valentine Day' or a 'Computer'? I would guess that mixes such as 'Mumtaz' and 'Wastha' are specific to this part of the world, but perhaps I am wrong? I have a lot of affection for such juice bars as I think they provide drinks which are both tasty and nutritious.
  3. Anu

    Phirni

    I am making dinner for some friends and would like to make phirni for dessert...however I want to try something different with it...adding fruit, different flavors...Does anyone have any suggestions?
  4. Suvir Saran

    Pickles / Preserves

    In America, we think of pickles as a kind of a relish, or side dish – a cured vegetable that adds a sour or tart note to the meal. We pickle a variety of different vegetables but, for whatever the differences, pickles all have a recognizably “pickled” taste. Indian pickles use many of the same ingredients – salt, vinegar, coriander, mustard seeds, turmeric, cinnamon, cloves and ginger – but they present some of the most diverse and exotic tastes and textures imaginable. They are fiery hot, sour, pungent, fragrant, sweet- and- sour, and tart. They are crisp, silky and chewy. Flavors may be fresh, the taste of each spice distinct, or married and intensified by months or even years of aging as the textures of the ingredients melt and soften. While Indians eat some pickles (such as the Mixed Vegetable Pickle, below) in relatively large quantities, the pickles are often too intensely flavored to be eaten that way; they’re used in tiny amounts as a spice or condiment to enliven a dish. Indians also use pickles in a way that Americans never do, that is, medicinally, to cure an ailment. Indians love to taste food; they live to taste food. Indians want many layers and many contrasting tastes. No one food can satisfy that hunger except a variety of pickles. I have jars and jars of multi-colored pickles sitting on the kitchen table. One is a tiny onion pickle, picked young and fresh and pickled in rice vinegar, that is common to almost all north Indian homes. Several are pickled chilies: one is made of whole green chilies and is dangerously hot while another, made from habaneros stuffed with spices, is more savory than hot, and a third is made from chopped green chilies soured with lemon. There is a crunchy sweet- and- hot cauliflower, turnip and carrot pickle, a ginger-lime pickle and a gooseberry pickle. These pickles are made from recipes that have been handed down by the women of my family for two to three hundred years. Some of these jars have been maturing for just a few days, others for much longer than that. A jar of lemon pickles made by his family chef at home in India, a jar that has been maturing for 60 years. In India, food is understood to be intimately related to health and medicine. The Ayurveda, the ancient Hindu text that defines the relationship of food, spices, exercise and meditation for the health of the human body, gives recipes for various medicinal foods and elixirs, of which pickles play an important role. I use lemon pickle as it is traditionally used in my native country: to cure queasiness and tummy aches. In my New York household I use pickles the way that wealthier households do in India, as a condiment guaranteed to give plain foods taste. In fact, in India it’s considered rude to ask for pickles if they are not on the table; it suggests that the food isn’t savory enough. Indian homes make several signature pickles, recipes that have been passed down through generations of women. Pickles made the season before are served daily. Aged, well-loved pickles are brought out when someone is sick or when the household is hosting a special meal. With the exception of some pickles that are made with winter produce such as cauliflower, radishes, turnips and carrots, pickles are made in Indian homes in the heat of the summer. Fruits and vegetables are bought from local vendors who sell door to door. Women spend several weeks preparing pickles. The fruits are laid out on terraces on sheets of muslin for several days in the summer sun to dry, or “ripen” and concentrate their flavors. The produce is brought inside every night to protect against dew and laid out again in the morning. The pickles are put up in very large ceramic jars, each about 20 inches tall and 8 inches wide. Once jarred, the pickles are ripened again for several more days in the sun. If you ask an Indian where the best pickles are made, they will name three centers: the Marwari and Baniya trading communities in northern India, the state of Gujerat in western India, and the state of Andhra Bradesh, in southern India. The Marwari and Baniya communities are completely vegetarian and they subsist on pickles and bread. The people of these communities make pickles everyday and their meals include several different types. Pickles that are spiced with fenugreek and fennel and pickled in mustard oil, are likely to be from northern India, as are pickled cauliflower, carrots, turnips and radishes, the so called “winter vegetables” that are grown on the northern plains. Pickles represent a ritual world of food and community in India. Pickling is an ancient art and a part of Hindu spiritual practice: according to the laws of Hindu religion, pickling, or “cooking” foods with sun and air is one of the three acceptable ways to make raw foods palatable. The rituals of pickle making define a certain period of the summer in India when entire households are given over to the task of their making. Traditionally, in small towns, the women join together, spending days outside in the shade of tamarind trees cutting, preparing, and drying the fruits and vegetables. The kids play above in the dense greenery of the trees, eating the green fruit of the tamarind and tossing the seeds onto the ground below. (Stomach aches and tiny tamarind seedlings are evidence of their gluttony.) Play, food, music and storytelling combine to give the season a celebratory mood. Even in urban centers in India today, the time of pickling still invites ritual community and celebration. Women call each other on the phone to organize the making of the pickles or to ask for the gift of a jar of a favorite kind. Life slows a bit, personal connections are made, and thousands of years of ritual is repeated. --Suvir Saran and Stephanie Lyness
  5. Toby

    Kheema

    On the lime thread, Suvir mentioned Bora Kheema, a Moslem-style ground lamb dish. It sounded very intriguing and I had some ground lamb, but Suvir wasn't logged on to ask for more directions, and I couldn't find a recipe. He had mentioned that it was cooked simply with cinnamon, cumin seed, coriander seed and red chile powder and finished with fresh lime juice. Left to my own devices, here's what I did -- First, I pan roasted the above spices plus something called penja pepper (pearl of cameroon) -- a white peppercorn, black cardamom seeds and some dried small red chiles and then ground them up. I chopped up some onion and sauteed it in a little oil until it was browning. Then I added some chopped up skinny (but bigger than Thai and not serrano) green chile peppers, garlic and ginger and sauteed that for a few minutes. I then stirred in the ground lamb, broke it up, and stirred it until it was just starting to brown, added some salt and 1/2 cup water and some of the ground up spices until it smelled right. Turned heat to very low, covered the pan, and cooked for a little over an hour until the meat was fairly dry. Turned off heat and squeezed in some lime juice. Ate with rice and some spinach. It was very enjoyable -- pretty hot from the fresh and dried peppers, but the cinnamon, cumin, peppercorns and coriander (I'd just bought some very fragrant Moroccan coriander seeds) seemed to balance the pepper heat with a darker, very aromatic taste. I'd appreciate it, Suvir or anyone else, if you'd post the authentic recipe so I could try that the next time, as well as other recipes for kheema. I find kheema truly addictive, I just want to go on eating it. Another question (this may have been addressed on another thread) is how long will dried spices stay fresh? What's the best way to store them? I buy the smallest packaged quantities possible (don't have a good source for bulk spices), but my kitchen is very hot and airless, and I always find I'm throwing spices out because they lose their fragrance.
  6. eGullet UK is having a huge (21 people) get-together at the Tayyab restaurant in London next week. This is actually a Pakistani restaurant, and doesn't serve wine (whether for religious or commercial reasons I don't know). Tony Finch, who has organised the event, suggests we all bring our own wine, and has recommended Shiraz as a good match for this type of food. The problem is that now everyone will bring Shiraz and that's likely to be boring. So I'd like an alternative suggestion or two. I have to admit that I generally drink (Indian) beer at Indian restaurants, and I can't think of a classic red wine that seems to fit. Maybe Chianti ? So please make some suggestions. If your choice is obscure, some ideas on where I could buy it in London would also help. Thank you, folks, you might also change my drinking habits at Indian restaurants for ever
  7. An Indian buddy of mine from Kansas City will be in town for the next month and he has been starved of good Indian Cooking for the last few years. Which places do you view to be the most authentic Indian food in Seattle/Eastside? I understand that Raga is good, and have been to Ceaders numerous times. Thoughts? Thanks, Ben p.s. he is hindu and is thusly vegetarian so good meatless dishes are a plus.
  8. Simon Majumdar

    Where's the Heart

    As vegetarian food in India is so wonderful, the place of meat often gets forgotten. In fact people assume you are a vegatarian unless you say that you are "non-veg" This often covers up the wonderful meat dishes that you can find in so many regions. One thing i have not been able to track down with any great success is a use of offal I love offal in all its forms. I think it is disengenuous to kill an animal and not try and eat all of it. I love the kidneys, the spleen, the hearts etc but my own cuisine seems lacking. Am I missing something? I have had a wonderful brain curry in Delhi, but that was it. Where in india do they specialise in offal and how do they prepare it. Any clues? S
  9. I read in the 'India Abroad', a few years ago, about National Curry Day being celebrated in the U.K. To mark the occasion an Indian restaurant prepared the world's largest vegetble curry. An Indian beer producer came up with a spiced up beer ( which was not very popular) they called it ' Madras in a glass'. Another company, not to be out done prepared a vindaloo using beer ( which sounds very interesting to me) and re-christned it Vindalager. Then on a recent visit to New Delhi ,I was confronted with huge banners and other advertising heralding ' National Samosa Week'. If you bought a pepsi from a participating eatery you would be treated to a free samosa. What is the forum's reaction to an International Curry Day ? The Day would be launched by the Indian PM in conjuction with an Indian celebrity Chef. It would be sponsered by Indian companies. There would be contests ranging from inovative origional reiepes with an Indian flavor to essay contests Why I Love Indian food. Prizes would range from complimentary airtickets to India, courtsy Air India to Gift certificates at local Indian restaurants. Suvir and Monica will conduct special gourmet tours to India, exploring regional cuisines. Indian restaurants worldwide will offer 'Buy one Get one Free' How was my dream??
  10. Come on now, lets hear it.. what spicy chicken recipe (Indian inspired) do you love.. why? Is it the spicy chettinand? Chicken 65? Malabar Chilli Chicken? Your own creation? I have super selfish movites... I want to try something new
  11. Gul_Dekar

    Indian Milk Sweets

    Hi my friend mentioned that her relatives often go back to India and buy these Indian milk sweets which are diamond in shape and come in various flavours like pistachio and so on. I was wondering if anyone has any idea what they are called and if possible where I could find a recipe to make my own? Are they difficult to make? I live in Malaysia and apparently they don't sell them here so I was just really curious about them. Would REALLY REALLY be grateful for any help!
  12. Although it's not blue, and you can't clean windows with it, Monica Bhide makes a compelling argument about how Basil is like Windex. However, you must have a copies of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" cued up on your VCR or DVD player to read this article! After returning from the video store, read on... (P.S. - We're kidding. Read on anyway...) * * * Be sure to frequently check The Daily Gullet home page daily for new articles, hot topics, site announcements, and more.
  13. Suvir Saran

    Kalustyan

    How do you rate them? Are there winning items available through them? How do you rate their chutneys? The store-brand that is. Do you buy their packaged foods?
  14. Sleepy_Dragon

    pappadums

    There's probably an obvious answer to this, but here goes. In Indian restaurants which do buffets, I've noticed their quantity cooked pappadums are always perfectly flat. Sometimes whole, sometimes cut in half, but still flat and very easy to stack or lean against each other. How is this accomplished? Whenever I do mine, it's either fried or cut in half with each half placed in a toaster, all the while keeping an eye on them in order to rotate the halves before they scorch. But they always come out wavy and not at all flat and stackable this way. Doesn't bother me in the least, but it would be easier to transport flat ones. Pat
  15. SuzySushi

    Mattar Paratha

    Tonight we tried frozen Peas Paratha, made by Pillsbury, India. We thought it was very tasty and I'd like to know how to make it from scratch. I can probably figure out the dough from other paratha recipes on eGullet, but would like to know how to make the nicely seasoned filling. Ingredients are: flour, peas, water, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, coriander, salt, glycerol [dough conditioner ???] onion, modified tapioca starch, cumin, green chillies, mango [amchur powder???], turmeric, chilli powder. TIA!
  16. I've never found truly great Indian food here. I'm told that the good stuff is down on the Peninsula (which, since it's not surrounded on three sides by water, is not a peninsula) or in Berkeley. Isn't there something great here? I haven't been to Shalimar. I admit I need to try it. I've tried Star India (Polk St. and the other location) -- very inconsistent. Most dishes with similarly colored gravies taste the same. (A common failing of Indian restaurants.) I've tried India Oven (Fillmore/Haight?). Pretty good. Too mellow. I tried the place at 9th and Lincoln (9th & Lincoln). I remember it being very good, but no specifics. I tried Pakwan. (16th and Valencia.) Nothing to write home about. Nothing to write egullet about. I think people like the anti-trendy atmosphere. I'm usually a sucker for that, but the food isn't good enough. I think they just have tubs of various gravies (tikka masala; vindaloo; etc.) that they pour over the appropriate meat (or cheese). I tried Gaylords. (Embarcadero). When I ordered off the menu, I recall it being pretty good. The lunch buffet is sooo consistently bad (why do I keep going back?) it pisses me off. Usually nothing more than curried vegetables and chicken wings in grease (they've come up with a more appetizing name for this, but I know chicken wings in grease when I it). What am I missing?
  17. Haggis

    Sweet Potatoes

    Appropriate to the season, I am wondering how Indians prepare sweet potatoes and yams. This year I have been assigned to bring a sweet potato/yam dish to the Thanksgiving potluck that I will be attending on the day after Thanksgiving, and I thought I'd not make the usual candied dish with marshmallows, and make something with exotic spices. If no other suggestions appear, I will probably make mashed sweet potatoes with butter, yoghurt, ginger, green chiles, garam masala, cardamom, and cinnamon. I'll throw some thinly sliced crisp caramelized onion on top for flavor as much as garnish. Anyone have any tips on how to enhance or improve the above? Better still, what are some genuine recipes that Indians use to prepare sweet potatoes?
  18. Monica Bhide

    Making Yogurt at home

    I love making yogurt at home. My method is very simple. Boil the milk - let it cool to the "pinky test" (if your pinky can stay in it for a full 20 seconds without your yelling bloody murder, then its ready). Add prepared yogurt ( about a spoon or so depending on the quantity of milk). Mix well. Pour milk into a bowl you can cover. Set overnight in a warm place (oven with pilot light on, or wrap the container in a towel). DOnt touch it for the rest of the night. in the morning you will have --> BTW_ this one is made with the low carb milk. It is the thickest best yogurt I have ever made. So what is your yogurt making secret???
  19. I drive through Newark Avenue often and notice all of the Indian restaurants and stores. I have not gone to any of them in years, and need some help. Are there any standouts? Thanks, Joana
  20. Dianabanana

    Khichdee + rice cooker = ?

    Okay I'm about to make some khichdee, which is basically a porridge of moong dal and rice. Can I do this in the rice cooker on the congee setting? Will the moong dal clog it up and make a horrific mess? I rather suspect the answer is yes but am tempted to try it anyway.
  21. We had an early lunch at a little Indian/Nepalese place last week. I satisfied my craving for poori, potato masala, and a cup of chai, and my husband had some kind of Nepalese vegetable curry, and a Nepalese spinach salad with roasted soybeans. Now I have questions. 1) The spinach salad was like cooked spinach wrung very dry, with (according to the menu) roasted chopped soybeans on top. To me these tasted almost exactly like wasabi peas, except not as pungent and not lurid green (they were regular tan soybean color). Definitely a horseradish type of flavor. What was it, and is this common in Nepalese food? 2) Both my chai and my husband's curry had a delicious, elusive smoky flavor. And please note that I have a horror of most smoke flavors added to food. These things tasted like they were prepared over a high-mountain campfire, but this restaurant was tiny and in a basement and I'm very sure that the only flames in there were from a gas range. And anyway, how would that flavor get into chai or a curry in which nothing was roasted? It had to be some ingredient they were using. I bought some Tao of Tea "Pine Smoked Black" tea and added it to chai in an effort to recreate the flavor, and it's similar, but very crude in comparison to the delicate smoke flavor at the restaurant. Yes I am kicking myself for not asking while I was there . . . I could call but thought I'd ask you guys first.
  22. Hello, I am looking for a handi also call degchi or panai. It is a cooking pot with a neck. Does anyone in the DC area know of a store that seels Indian cooking pots? Or if not that, a web site? Thanks to all.
  23. I recently went to Chowpatty in Iselin, NJ. The menu has a whole section of "Gujarati Vegetable," with no descriptions. Actually nothing on the menu has descriptions. I am wondering what the most common Gujarati dishes are so that I know what to order next time. I did some internet searches and am not able to translate any of the dishes, maybe it is how they spell them. Vegetables (Gujarati): Undhiya Tuvar Ringan Ringan Bataka Tindora Bataka Bhinda Auro Kaju Karela Parvar Na Raviya Kankola
  24. Monica Bhide

    Thalippu Vadagam

    Ah yes.. I found a packet of Thalippu Vadagam in my local grocery store in Vienna, Va. Made in New Jersey no less! Okay so anyone want to share a recipe? For those who dont know.. I do know a small bit -- Thalippu vadagam are small balls of spices made of curry leaves, fenugreek, turmeric etc and are used in South India to prepare specific dishes.. anyone care to share recipes? tell me more... The lady at the Indian store told me sales of this produce were not good cos people not only did not know how to cook them, most took a bite out of the raw vadas and were NOT pleased
  25. foodietraveler

    Everything Indian Cookbook

    Monica, Any suggestions on how I should work with your book? What do you think is best way of reading it, cooking with it? Do you have favorite recipes?
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