Chutneys are a mainstay in Indian cooking. They bring out the flavors of any dish. They can be used as an appetizer, be an accompaniment with your main course or can even be used as a dessert. They can be sweet or a savory. The type and preparation of different chutneys has significant regional variations. I love sweet chutneys. You can find one of my eternal favorites here. Sumi loves the spicy varieties more.
If you are a follower of this blog, you will know that paneer is one of my favorite ingredients. I love paneer as much as I love chicken. I always try to experiment with different paneer dishes. However I have rarely tried to create a well-known paneer dish like Kadai Paneer. Since today is our weekly vegetarian day, I wanted to cook a paneer dish. I looked through some cookbooks and decided on creating a Kadai Paneer.
Diwali is around the corner. I miss the sweets and special fish dishes mom cooked for us around the festival holidays. Sumi and I don’t do anything special. But we try to have a different type of fish during these days which we would not have regularly. This is because fish is considered lucky and auspicious. We bought Paiya fish yesterday. I had it once before at a friend’s place and it tasted great.
In our Indian cuisine, it’s very difficult to have any regular non-vegetarian curry without rice or bread. But ever since our low-carb diet begun, we have reduced our rice and bread intake by 90%. As a result, we always need to add some extra veggies (or fruits) or some other inventive cooking methods to have our chicken or fish curries. There was this time where we had slices of cheese (Mozzarella and Cheddar) along with chicken or the time when we grated Parmesan over the chicken.
Whenever it rains, it takes me back to my childhood. Both Boomboom and I grew up in the chilly Northern and Eastern India. Inherently, rains accompanied a severe drop in temperature. The perfect rainy evening consisted of crispy potato and chicken pakodas with coffee. Mom used to cook these frequently but they became tasted extraordinary on a rainy day. Our whole family would sit together and savor theses pakodas.
With the Durga Puja celebrations over, it is a bit lull around here. Every Monday I feel very tired and sleepy as Boomboom can vouch for. This is because for some reason I do not get proper sleep on Sunday nights. However for a change this was not the case this week. It was a good thing too as yesterday was Lakshmi Puja. So I was able to get up in the morning and do the rituals for the Puja.
Today is the last day of Durga Puja. Sumi and I stayed home whole day. So to spend her holiday she cooked. That woman surprises me with her patience and cooking. She cooked fish, chicken and crab. Now I don’t like crabs much but Sumi swears by them. I was surprised with the result though. It was a very traditional Bengali way of preparation and was delicious. I never realized crabs would taste so good to me.
My mom cooks wonderful mutton. Khashir Mangsho (Goat meat) is a popular delicacy in Bengal and is especially served during festivals. During our Durga Puja festival, on the Maha Ashthami (eighth day), Boomboom’s side of the family definitely have this dish. The gravy is turned healthy by adding loads of vegetables. These add great flavor into the dish. I have such fond memories of childhood. During the rainy days, I used to get so excited when I returned from school to a hot meal of plain rice and mutton gravy.
We’ve been having Chicken for the past few days. Usually as a starter and dry version. But we all know it’s difficult to just eat such dish without a sauce or a dip. Our most common dip in such cases is a raita. Raita is a very common extra in almost every part of India and there are a variety of ways and techniques to prepare it. Well this is our version.
I usually don’t post my own recipes here. Usually they have either been cooked by Sumi or our moms. This is always due to Sumi always having a modified and better version of my recipes. However the past few days we really wanted to try something different. Hence I decided to cook a very spicy chicken (spicy by our standards) by myself. As things would turn out, it actually tasted quite nice.