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Old 07-04-2008, 12:44 PM   #1
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Indian Food

Pretty sure I can eat indian food every day. It's amazing. Until recently, I always took Indian food for takeout. I've never been successful at cooking Chinese food, especially anything fried, so I've always been very hesitant to give Indian food a try.

I was wrong! With the help of some websites which I'll mention below, they've made life incredibly easy.

Last night I made and Chapatti. They tasted SO Amazing. I'm going to be making Butter Chicken this weekend.

Anyone else out there really in to Indian food?

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Old 07-04-2008, 12:51 PM   #2
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I love Indian food but have not thought much about cooking it at home. Now the butter chicken... I LOVE THAT... just give me that and some naan (sp?) and I'm good to go!!!
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Old 07-04-2008, 03:03 PM   #3
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I cook it at home. It's not all that difficult. You should give it a try.
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Old 07-04-2008, 04:02 PM   #4
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I just remember when I first got into cooking Indian food, I must have spent about $80 in Indian spices. Now it appears Im set for life. Many of the recipes Ive tried require small amounts of many spices. Some are relatively common. Others, require a little more effort to find,like in an Indian/ Asian store. But, it is definitely unlike any other food type Ive tried to cook, and so many different variations and flavors to play with. I love it.
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Old 07-05-2008, 09:39 AM   #5
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I'm headed to the Asian store today to stock up on more spices. Cooking Butter Chicken today and some sweet rice. :)
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Old 07-05-2008, 04:25 PM   #6
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I adore Indian food, always have. I enjoy experimenting with different recipes and inventing some original concoctions inspired from the Indian dishes I have had. I have improved myself a lot and come a long way over the years, but still, my dishes are missing "something" compared to the foods prepared by Indian chefs. I really want to get to the core of it one day.

There are a group of Indian people living two flights down from our flat, everyday wonderful aroma wafts over from their kitchen and tease us and make our mouthes water. We are seriously thinking about striking up some friendship with them and taking a lesson or two from them

I hope you will encounter Yakuta on this board soon, she is an expert and helped me a lot, too!
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Old 07-05-2008, 05:31 PM   #7
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I make some Indian dishes at home, buer chicken and also a spicy chicken curry with mango and peas - love good Indian!
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Old 07-05-2008, 06:31 PM   #8
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Ok dude.... I'm doing butter chicken tonight and naan.... if it sucks, I'm blaming you!!!! LOL!!! No really, you inspired me... my house has never smelled soooo good!!! I'll let you know how it goes!
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Old 07-05-2008, 06:33 PM   #9
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Love Indian food, one of the few things I like about Chicago are all the ethnic grocery stores. It makes buying the ingredients and making it at home that much easier, without the higher cost of the supermarkets ethnic isles!
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Old 07-06-2008, 11:14 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sattie View Post
Ok dude.... I'm doing butter chicken tonight and naan.... if it sucks, I'm blaming you!!!! LOL!!! No really, you inspired me... my house has never smelled soooo good!!! I'll let you know how it goes!
How did it turn out?

For me, I could taste the delicious Indian flavor I was expecting wayyyy in the background. I had to think REALLY hard to taste it. I missed a few spices I could not find, that's probably where I failed.

My texture was a little offputting as well. I could have done the blending step a little longer, and maybe strained it afterward. I'm going to try that out next time, running it through a sieve before I finish.

One thing he doesn't mention in that recipe is how much water to use. I found 1/4 cup wasn't enough. I had to add some. Next time I'll go with 1/2 to 3/4 of a cup.
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Old 07-06-2008, 12:04 PM   #11
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It was not bad. The recipe I used called for 2 cups of chicken broth and I used 4 cups... not sure how I mis read that. So I had to let it reduce way longer and eventually added a thickening agent. But the flavor was there that I am use to when dining out for butter chicken.

The yogurt... I used plain yogurt, but it said it should not be sour. How in the heck are you suppose to know? Is this special yogurt or just the stuff you get at your local grocer?

I also noticed two variations of this dish, (I looked at 100s of recipes) one of which used tomatoes/ tomato paste, the other not a tomato to be found. I went with the tomatoless recipe. I could have stood for a bit more heat, but have to go easy on the DH. It also needed some sweetness... probably where I went wrong with choosing the wrong yogurt.

I was able to find all my spices... but now I have all these wonderful new spices that just smell wonderful and wonder now what else I can use them in!

My naan had the right idea and tasted good, but was a bit tough. I over worked the dough so that explains that! But it served the purpose nicely as I used it to sop up that wonderful gravy!

I believe you and me will need to keep working at it!!! I will have to wait a few days to try another recipe. This is DHs first time in Indian cuisine.
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Old 07-06-2008, 02:17 PM   #12
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Often times in recipes like this we will add a tbsp or two of sugar to it, helps with the sweetness you are missing as well as blending the spices and flavors.
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Old 07-06-2008, 03:15 PM   #13
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I added some sugar... but not enough. Could of used a bit more, but since my dish was on a crash course to doom, I'm quite happy it turned out like it did.
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Old 07-06-2008, 06:52 PM   #14
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Sattie, since you consulted so many recipes not sure if you need mine but I make butter chicken every few months. Not too much because it's pretty high in fat. I follow this recipe and it works everytime.

At the end I will give you a little cheat trick that I use to make a very quick version when I don't have much time but I still want to get an authentic result.

Ingredients:

Marinade for the chicken
1 cup of plain yogurt (best one to buy is greek or middleeastern). It has the creamy texture that works well and it's not very sour
2 tsp of freshly minced or grated ginger
1 tsp of red food color
Toast the following spices - put them in a dry skillet and let them toast on a low heat
1 tbsp of cumin seeds, 1 tbsp of corrainder seeds, 1/4 tsp of black peppercorns, 3 cloves, 1 small stick of cinnamon, 3 dried red chilies
Grind the whole spices. You will use 2 tsps of this in the chicken
handful of chopped cilantro
juice of one lime
salt to taste

Mix this with a chicken (one whole chicken works well, remove the skin and cut into large peices) and let it sit for 3 hours.

Normally this chicken would be cooked in a tandoor but you can cook it on the grill, oven or even stove top. Cook it with the marinade and all until it's dry.

Let the chicken cool. Once it's cool debone it and reserve the meat.

Recipe for the Gravy:

1/2 cup of a cashews (sweet) grind finely
1 tsp of freshly minced ginger
1 small can of tomato sauce
1 small onion finely chopped
1 stick of butter
1/2 cup of cream
Reserved ground spices
2 tsps of kasuri methi (available at Indian stores in a box) - This is an absolute necessary ingredient in making a traditional butter chicken. You take the 2 tsps of this herb and then crumble it with your fingers and add it to the gravy.
salt to taste
2 tsps of sugar
corrainder leaves for garnish

In a pan, add the butter. Once it melts, add the onion and let it cook until it's golden brown. Next add the cashews and minced ginger and spices and let them toast in the butter for a bit. Now add the kasuri methi and tomato sauce and chicken, salt and sugar. Let it all cook on low for 10 minutes or so. In the end add the cream, stir it to combine and let it simmer for another 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve with naan.

Now the short cut method: The best spice mix to make butter chicken that I have come across is called Parampara (it's available in most Indian stores). It's a ready to use spice packet with a concentrated spice paste.

What I do is just cut up a whole chicken and marinate it in some lime juice.

Then I make a gravy using a stick of butter, some cashews, add the parampara paste to it and a few tbsp of tomato sauce. Then I add the chicken and let it cook on low until the chicken is cooked and curry thickens. Garnish with corrainder and you will have something pretty close to the real thing minus all the hard work so what if the chicken has bones in it.

Also if you got spices you can use them in a gazillion dishes. Not all Indian dishes are curries I think they just have that rep. Hopefully you bought whole spices and if you are in doubt what to do with some of them send me a PT and I can give you some ideas.

All the best.
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Old 07-06-2008, 08:40 PM   #15
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Thanks Yakuta for the info... karma commin your way!!! Thanks for the tips as well... I will try this recipe next time I make this. I saw some butter chicken ready make in a box, but don't recall what brand it was. I will check this next time I go.... I almost did this and decided I would rather do it all from scratch, or at least most of it.

Yes, they are whole spices!!! Green cardamon... strange looking things!!!
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Old 07-08-2008, 03:11 AM   #16
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I LOVE Indian food and gave up, for the most part, on making it when a freind took to bringing me pre-made stuff from Chicago. The amount of spices I'd have to keep on hand and fresh was just too much! I always smile, though, when I think of this man shopping for me in Chicago to get good ingredients! On occasion I do cook from scratch, but for the most part there is some pretty darned good stuff out there. Galena is a lovely town, but is totally lacking in ethnic foods.
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Old 07-08-2008, 05:33 AM   #17
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I love eating and cooking indian food. I cook mainly vegetarian indian food, just by chance. In fact, one of my all time favourite things in the world is a turnip curry. The fact its low fat and high favour makes it very appealing too.
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