Dinner this week was on Saturday because of a bunch of previous commitments we had on Friday (which I guess makes it a SND?) and oh my goodness, it was so much fun! Saturday was quite the eventful day. By the time I got home all I wanted to do was jump, or in my case hobble, into bed and go to sleep.
Taylor and I started off the day out at Horning’s Hideout in North Plains to cover this year’s Warrior Dash for The Oregonian. After being stuck in some serious traffic getting into Horning’s Hideout (it took us 45 minutes to go 4 miles) we finally made it. We joked with the parking guy about the $10 parking, saying it should be free, and he just threw a ticket in our car and let us park for free. It must have been our charm and good looks 🙂 We met up with Ben, a friend of mine from OSU, and got ready to follow his team around for the afternoon. These guys get seriously into the dash — costumes, warpaint and feathers in their hair. The event looks like so much fun! Taylor and I are planning on getting our gimpy knees fixed as soon as we can so we can participate next year. To read more about it, check out Taylor’s article.
But back to our dinner. We decided to go with an Indian theme this week. Our very first dinner was Indian so we thought we’d bring the theme back and spice up our dinner. We got back to Taylor’s apartment a little after 5:00 and got down to our cookin’. It was a little time consuming, but totally worth it. Everyone’s food last night was delicious. We had naan (which didn’t really look like naan because Taylor employed the pattycake method, but it tasted good), chicken biryani and lentil curry. So good and so fragrant. While we ate we talked about our guilty pleasures, Taylor Swift music; movies that make us cry (The Lion King gets us everytime) and things we would want to do/eat for the rest of our lives. It was a really fun, lighthearted evening. We ended the night with a trip to Cool Moon ice cream and Jamison Square, admiring the lights in the trees and teaching Brett all about shoes.
Check out our recipes and try them out for yourselves, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!
Red Lentil Curry:
- 2 cups red lentils
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp. curry paste
- 1 tbsp. curry powder
- 1 tsp. ground turmeric
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. white sugar
- 1 tsp. minced garlic
- 1 tsp. ginger root, minced
- 1 (14.25 oz) can tomato puree
- Wash the lentils in cold water until the water runs clear (this is very important or the lentils will get “scummy”), put the lentils in a pot with water to cover and simmer covered until lentils tender (add more water if necessary).
- While the lentils are cooking: In a large skillet or saucepan, caramelize the onions in vegetable oil.
- While the onions are cooking, combine the curry paste, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, salt, sugar, garlic, and ginger in a mixing bowl. Mix well. When the onions are cooked, add the curry mixture to the onions and cook over a high heat stirring constantly for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato puree and reduce heat, allow the curry base to simmer until the lentils are ready.
- When the lentils are tender drain them briefly (they should have absorbed most of the water but you don’t want the curry to be too sloppy). Mix the curry base into the lentils and serve immediately.
- 225g/8oz/2 cups unbleached white flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 oz. fresh yeast
- 4 tbsp. lukewarm milk
- 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp. natural (plain) yogurt
- 1 egg
- 2-3 tbsp. melted ghee or butter, for brushing
- Sift the flour and salt together into a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, cream the yeast with the milk. Set aside for 15 minutes.
- Add the yeast and milk mixture, vegetable oil, yogurt and egg to the flour. Combine the mixture using your hands until it forms a soft dough. Add a little more of the lukewarm water if the dough is too dry.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, or until it feels smooth. Return the dough to the bowl, cover ad leave in a warm place for about 1 hour, or until it has doubled in size. Preheat the oven to its highest setting — it should not be any lower than 450°F.
- Turn out the dough back onto the floured surface and knead for a further 2 minutes.
- Divide into three equal pieces, shape into balls and roll out into teardrop shapes 10in. long, 5in. wide, and 1/4in thick.
- Preheat the grill (boiler) to its highest setting. Meanwhile, place the naan on preheated baking sheets and back for 3-4 minutes, or until puffed up.
- Remove from the oven and place under the hot grill for a few seconds until the tops brown slightly. Brush with ghee or butter and serve warm.
- 1 1/2 cups basmati rice
- 10 whole green cardamom pods
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2-3 whole cloves
- 2 in. piece cinnamon stick
- 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 3 onions, sliced
- 4 chicken breast fillets, each about 6oz., skinned and cubed
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp. hot chilli powder
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh root ginger
- juice of 1 lemon
- 4 tomatoes, sliced
- 2 tbsp. chopped fresh coriander (cilantro)
- 2/3 cup natural (plain) yogurt, plus extra to serve
- 4-5 saffron threads, soaked in 2 tsp. warm milk
- 2/3 cup water
- toasted flaked (sliced) almonds and fresh coriander (cilantro) sprigs, to garnish
- Wash the rice well and leave to soak in water for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375°F. Remove the seeds from half the cardamom pods and grind the finely, using a pestle and mortar. Set aside the ground seeds.
- Bring a pan of water to the boil. Drain the rice and add it with the salt, whole cardamom pods, cloves and cinnamon stick. Boil for 2 minutes, then drain, leaving the whole spices in the rice. Keep the rice hot in a covered pan.
- Heat the oil in a karahi, wok, or large pan, and fry the onions for 8 minutes, until softened and browned.
- Add the chicken and the ground spices, including the ground cardamom seeds. Mix well, then add the garlic, ginger, and lemon juice. Stir-fry for about 5 minutes.
- Transfer the chicken mixture to a casserole dish and arrange the tomatoes on top. Sprinkle on the fresh coriander, spoon the yogurt evenly on top and cover with the drained rice.
- Drizzle the saffron milk over the rice and pour over the water. Cover, then bake in the oven for 1 hour. Transfer to a serving platter and discard the whole spices. Garnish with the toasted flaked almonds and coriander sprigs and serve immediately.
Happy eating, everyone!