Saturday, September 25, 2010

PFB #2 - Out of the box Indian style!

For Project Food Blog second challenge, the winners from challenge #1 were asked to tackle a classic dish from another culture. Not always easy for me to step out of the box but I really wanted to work with Indian cuisine. While living in England in the late 90ies, we were fortunate to find a great Indian Restaurant called Brandon Tandoori. Our friends would join us a few times each month for a great dinner.  My Indian Meal represents our times spent there... and I think I did a good job pulling it off! Just ask my husband, my daughter and her friend.

PFB Challenge #2 - A Classic Indian Dinner

Menu:  Chicken Tikka, Basmati Rice, Aloo Dum and Naan Bread

Chicken Tikka
  • 2 skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 inches fresh ginger, peeled
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 C yogurt (could not find Mager Quark)
  • 1/2 t chili powder
  • 2 T Tandoori Masala
  • 1/4 t turmeric
  • 2 t ground cumin
  • 2 t ground coriander
  • 2 T tomato puree
  • 2 T lemon juice 
Directions: Add onion, ginger, garlic, yogurt, lemon juice and all spices into a food processor and pulse until smooth.   Pour marinade over cubed chicken and allow to marinate for at least 1 hour or overnight.   Thread chicken onto skewers and grill for 10 minutes, turning once, until cooked through.   Serve with rice and potatoes.
 All the spices into the food processor.

 Chicken marinating.

 Threaded skewers ready for the grill.

Basmati Rice
  • 2 C Basmati Rice
  • 4 C cold water
  • 2 t whole cumin seeds
  • 3 cardamom pods, lightly crushed and black seeds saved, pods discarded
  • 1 t fennel seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 12 black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5 T butter
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • salt and pepper
Directions:   In a medium bowl, add the rice and 4 cups of cold water.   Soak the rice for about an hour.   
In small saute pan, add the cumin, cardamom, fennel, cinnamon, peppercorns and bay leaves.   Warm over low heat to lightly toast the spices to awaken the flavors, for about 3 minutes.   

Heat a medium saute pan over medium heat and add the butter and the onion.   Season with salt and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.   Stir in the spices.   Drain the rice, reserving the liquid, and stir the rice into the onion/spice mixture and cook until you hear the rice crack.   Add the reserved soaking water, season with salt and bring to a simmer over medium heat.   Cook rice uncovered and undisturbed for about 8 minutes or until done.   Remove from heat, let rest, then fluff with a fork.

Awakening the flavors of the spices.

Allo Dum
  • 2 lbs potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1.2 t turmeric
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 T fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 t cumin seeds
  • 2 t coriander seeds
  • 1/2 t ground cloves
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 3 onions, diced
  • 1/2 C yogurt
  • 1/4 C tomato puree
  • 1/2 t chili powder
  • salt and pepper
  • fresh cilantro, chopped
Directions:   In a large pot, cover potatoes with cool water and boil until just fork tender.   In a large skillet, lightly toast all of the spices over low heat for a few minutes then add the olive oil and onions.   Cook for 5 - 7 minutes over low heat.
Add the tomato puree, chili powder and then the potatoes.   Over low heat and add the yogurt and heat through for an additional 10 minutes.   Top with fresh cilantro.

Ready for the plate potatoes.

Naan Bread
Store bought... totally delicious!

We really enjoyed this meal and the house smells SO GOOD!

Looks fantastic...tastes incredible... added cilantro and lemon wedges.

Everyone LOVED it and I'm so glad I went outside of my comfort box and tried Indian!


Serena said...

Those flavors sounds incredible and making chicken skewers and allo dum sounds like an amazing experience! Best of luck to you - you have my vote!

wendyweekendgourmet said...

I've never made Indian food at home, but you make it look do-able AND yummy! You've got this Texas gal's vote!

Unknown said...

Congrats on getting to the second round and for making such a sucessful dinner! It must have been a lot of fun having homemade Indian food and thinking back to your days in England! (which by the way, is very cool)

Debbie said...

nice from India is sometimes difficult...looks like you nailed it!

Anonymous said...

I have only recently become a big fan of Indian, but exploring their cuisine is very tasty and flavorful. I particularly enjoy making my own spice blends. Your dish looks amazing. Best of luck with round 2!

Suchitra Vaidyaram said...

Absolutely love the flavors you have used (especially for dum aloo)- Looks fab!

Lindsey @ FRESH AIR + FRESH FOOD said...

Beautiful color! I love Indian food in restaurants - thanks for bringing it home!

Jean said...

Everything on the plate looks wonderful! As much as I love Indian food, I haven't had much success at home. Nice job.

FOODalogue said...

Very nice. I also did Indian and commented about how good my house smelled. The spices are just aromatic. Good luck!

Torviewtoronto said...

lovely feast

Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels said...

I love it that you were inspired to create an Indian dish because of living in England. What a great idea! The food looks soooo good!! Congrats on making it to the 2nd round and best of luck!

Libby Hickson said...

This looks amazing! I told my brother I'd cook Indian food for him tomorrow night - was just looking at Aarti's recipes on, but now maybe I'll try your menu instead! Good luck!

Becky said...

There are so many wonderful spices in these Indian dishes, you can virtually taste them. I've never cooked Indian, but you did a great job. Good Luck on Round 2.

Classic Kitchen Twist said...

Yum! I love Indian flavors! Great job and I'll be voting for you!

Carolyn said...

Gave you a vote. I love all Indian food. Yum! Good luck!

A Little Yumminess said...

looks great! you did an awesome job!

Peggy said...

Great dish! Everybody looks like they enjoyed it! Good luck!

Unknown said...

I was sighing with pleasure when I saw the chicken on the skewers and it hadn't even been cooked yet! It looks like it was a fantastic dish. Congrats on making it to round two and I look forward to the dish you make in round three. ;)

The Cilantropist said...

What a great meal with your family, love the photo of all of you around the dinner table! Great entry, you got my vote! :) Good luck!

Food o' del Mundo said...

What a wonderful choice! I want some on my dinner table NOW! Hope we both make it to round three!

notyet100 said...

everythin looks so good,..