Thai Massaman Curry

Thai Massaman Curry

We love Thai food. Probably because of its similarities to Indian food… the spicy curries, the coconut, the fragrant rice. Today’s Thai massaman curry recipe dates back to Christmas 2008 when we visited our friends, Punitha and Winston, in Atlanta. It was our first time meeting Punitha and boy did she spoil us with her delicious cooking!! On the last day of our stay she made an amazing Thai meal featuring her massaman curry recipe and I’ve been making her recipe ever since. It always comes out perfect and is eaten up in no-time! My boys love it. This is a quick weeknight recipe that can be served with some steamed Jasmine rice.

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Chana masala

chanamasala

Chana masala (spiced chickpeas) is a staple in my kitchen and definitely my go-to dish when entertaining. This intensely spiced, tangy, aromatic dish makes for a healthy, protein packed dinner.

This dish can quickly be made if you have the spices roasted and blended in advance (or you can use ready made chana masala spice which is readily available). I recently made a batch of this spice blend to speedup my weeknight cooking. After researching quiet a few recipes and several trials, I now have the perfect recipe that I am thrilled to share with you! This blend uses Kashmiri red chilies that give the dish a deep orange color and just the right amount of heat and dried mango powder to enhance the tangy tomato flavor. The spice blend uses few basic spices and can be made ahead in a big batch or can also be made while you are sauteing onions for this chana masala recipe. Here is the recipe using my chana masala spice blend that can be made in a jiffy.

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Homemade Garam Masala

Garammasala

Garam Masala is a staple in Indian homes. It’s the aromatic spice blend that brings warmth and depth to Indian cuisine. Every region, every family has their own secret recipe made of a combination of spices. My mom’s quintessential garam masala uses 21 spices! I still remember her yearly ritual of making the garam masala, which involved shopping for the best whole spices, cleaning and roasting them, grinding them and then carefully storing them in beautiful glass jars. It would be shared with relatives and used for rest of the year. Lucky for me, my mom still makes the blend every year and has a huge bag ready for me to bring back each time we visit her in India.

Over the past several years, during her visits to us she has taught me how to create a simplified version in smaller batches. It only uses 5 ingredients that are readily available – peppercorns, green cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and black cumin or caraway seeds. Just 1 tsp of this garam masala can add authentic flavors to many Indian dishes. Sure beats one that is store bought.

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Spicy Malabar Shrimp curry

shrimp(1)

A recipe too good not to share! I recently came across one of Maunika
Govardhan’s shrimp recipes that had my taste buds jumping with
excitement. I had a friend, who loves seafood, coming for dinner so I
thought I should give it a try.

Well my excitement got the best of me… I was so eager to make this
dish that I didn’t stop to read the detailed instructions and instead
started making it simply by going back and forth between the
ingredients and method on my iphone.  Before I knew I was at the last
step of making the sauce and I had poured in 4 tablespoons of tamarind
paste. It took me a minute to realize that it probably is too much as
the recipe also calls for lots of tomatoes but it was too late. Once
the shrimp was cooked, I had a taste and it was sour. I went back to
the recipe and read her detailed notes where she clearly mentioned the
strength of the tamarind paste.

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Baingan Bharta

I LOVE eggplant! I have eaten it in many restaurants but my mom’s recipe beats them all in taste, texture and aroma. In my recipe I also add tomatoes to add the tangy flavor. I prefer charring the skin directly on my outdoor grill burner but I also sometimes broil it in the oven. Peel the charred skin, mash the eggplant and then saute with green chilies, garlic, onions, tomatoes and scallions.. yumm.

Here is a step by step recipe:

Roast the eggplant directly on a outdoor grill or broil on high for 20 mins until all the outside skin is charred and the eggplant gets mushy all over.

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Fish Curry with Basmati Rice

Fish is staple in our home.  Fish cooks much faster and needs very few ingredients to bring out the flavors which makes it a quick and healthy week night dinner option. This particular curry recipe is very simple and pairing it with Basmati rice makes it an amazing meal.

In this recipe I have used fillet catfish. Catfish is a moderately fatty fish with a good source of high quality protein and is an excellent source of vitamin B-12. It is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids.

Recipe:

Prep time: 5 mins  Cooking time:15 mins    Total time: 20 mins

Ingredients:

1 lb fillet catfish
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 large tomato cut into 4 pieces
1 small red onion roughly chopped
4 tbsp fresh grated coconut
1/2 inch peeled ginger
4  garlic cloves
1/2 tablespoon cooking oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tsp red chili powder
salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Wash and drain the catfish. Cut into 2 inch cubes and apply 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.
  2. Puree onion, tomatoes, coconut, ginger and garlic to a fine paste.
  3. Heat oil in a medium pan.Add mustard seeds and once they start to crackle add the onion and tomato puree.
  4. Add turmeric and red chili powder and cook on medium heat for 5 mins until the oil starts to separate stirring occasionally.
  5. Drain any water/lemon juice from the fish and add the fish to the sauce.
  6. Add salt and gently mix together the sauce and the fish. Cook covered on medium heat for 5 mins.

Note: You may want to add 1/4th to 1/2 cup warm water to get the desired consistency.

Serve with Hot Basmati rice and lime wedges!

Enjoy!