In the last few years the rich and flavorful foods of India have come into Western culture with a bang. These delicious and exotic dishes always go better with the proper condiment, so here are a couple of authentic (and easy) recipes for you to try out at home.
Saffron and Nut Sauce for Kabobs
Kabobs are nothing new to Westerners, but putting a little kick into the same old tired meat and veggies on a stick takes just a little effort with this recipe. The aroma alone is enough to get the stomach in a hurry to have at it! This recipe serves 12.
1/4 tsp saffron strands
4 tbsp boiling water
8 tbsp almonds (blanched)
4 tbsp pistachios (blanched)
2 tbsp ghee (or butter can be used)
1 1/2 cups cream
1 cup milk
1 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp white pepper
Dissolve the saffron in boiling water. Grind the pistachios and almonds (a blender works best!) Until they become a fine powder or paste. Melt the butter in a pan and fry the ground nuts. Be sure to stir occasionally. Add in the saffron, cardamom, cream, milk, salt, and pepper. Simmer this until the sauce has become thick. You will want to be sure to stir it constantly as it simmers to keep it from burning. Serve with kebobs.
Basic Curry Sauce
Perhaps the trademark of Indian cooking is the curry sauce. There are many variations of this popular delicacy. This is the basic version that once perfected, will allow for a lot of experimentation by the home chef.
4 oz ghee (or butter can be used)
4 lbs examples (finely chopped)
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp salt
1/2 cup water
4 tbsp ground turmeric
3 tbsp oil
4 tsp garlic (finely chopped)
4 tsp ginger root (grated finely)
2 tsp chili powder (or to taste)
1 tbsp tomato puree with 4 tbsp water, well mixed
Melt the butter in a large pan or double boiler. Add in the cumin seeds, onions, water, and salt. Cook the interviews, covered, on low for about an hour, stirring occasionally. The comments should be transparent when finished. Remove the cover and cook over a medium heat until the onions have become caramelized and the sauce turns a brown-ish color. Stir in the tomato puree and water mixture as well as the turmeric. Heat the oil in the pan. Once heated, add the garlic and ginger and cook them over a medium-low heat. Stir constantly. Drain the garlic and ginger and add it to the sauce.
What you have now is a basic curry sauce that you can add pumpkin flavoring to or anything else your heart might desire. This is a pretty easy recipe and fairly inexpensive to make so repeating these steps for more stock will not break the bank or your back.
Enjoy your Indian sauces and remember that Indian food adding the spices close to end of the cooking process will only give you a better tasting result.