Month: September 2010

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potato-spring-onion

Gujarati Potatoes and Spring Onions Sautéed in Chickpea Flour

      Fresh flavoured, dry curries are done so well by Gujaratis. It’s all about taking simple ingredients and packing in as much flavour as possible. From thalis (3 course meal plates), to dhokras (steamed savoury cakes) and mistan (Indian sweets), the simplicity and variety of Gujarati cuisine is a huge attraction for vegetarians. Around three-quarters of the population of Gujarat are vegetarian for an assortment of reasons. Among religious, economical and health reasons, many Gujarati’s believe that the abundance of nuts, beans and leafy greens available in their region neutralises the need to eat meat. Having said this, Gujarati food is simple, family cooking which can coax the most radical meat-eaters into enjoying a vegetarian meal. This dish is just one of those typical Gujarati specialities which can be adapted according to what produce is in season and available at the time. Chickpea flour curries are great with okra, fresh fenugreek leaves and even whole chilli peppers! That is if you’re feeling brave enough. Why not check out my recipe for Turnip and …

plum-conserve

Fiery Plum Conserve

One day I shall pay for this sweet sugar addiction of mine Purple is definitely the colour trend of the season over here. As autumn approaches, every clothes shop is bursting at the seams with plums, violets and amethysts. Not only does this make choosing clothes really difficult, but it also fills my mind with thoughts of seasonal produce and autumn flavours. That’s right, I think about food when I shop for clothes. There’s something seriously wrong there. I felt the urge to jump on the purple preserve bandwagon after Mr. P of Delicious Delicious Delicious made a stunning blackberry jam from a portion of the 5kg of sugar he found on his doorstep one morning (here’s the story). Regardless of the fact that there is a distinct lack of freebies coming my way (gosh, I’m so bitter), P’s jam looked so divine that I had to follow suit. I think that aniseed adds an extra dimension to both sweet and savoury dishes. It’s deep, liquorice-like flavour provides sweet dishes with a savoury edge, and …

rose-baklava

Rose & Pistachio Baklava

Fresh baklava has to be one of the most famous sweets across the globe. Throughout the Middle East and across Mediterranean lands it is king. Boy, do those people have good taste. Nutty, chewy and ultimately calorific, baklava sticks to your teeth and your thighs. My philosophy is to enjoy devilishly sweet treats in moderation and occasionally in excess.* This take on one of my favourite sweets was inspired by baklava I ate at an odd little Turkish cafe I visited in London not so long ago. It was very dark and very greasy. The cafe, not the baklava. In fact, the baklava was amazing. It had all of the super flavours of traditional baklava with a wonderfully textured twist. I love me some twists. Sweet rice and the traditional spiced nuts were enveloped in thin, crisp filo pastry layers, then drenched in sugar syrup and left to absorb until chewy and divine. Pouring the hot sugar syrup on when the baklava is fresh from the oven makes it easier for it to absorb into the …

aubergine-curry

Mashed Aubergine and Green Pea Curry

Traditional Gujarati cuisine is about simple ingredients paired with simple flavours. This is not a traditional Gujarati dish, however. Yes, I tweaked it and I’m not even sorry. It grew out of my love of the wonderful aubergine dish ‘oroh’, a.k.a ‘baingan bharta’. Almost every Indian region has its own version of this recipe and if that isn’t enough evidence of its popularity, its predominance in Indian restaurants all over the world is. If you’re looking for something hot and spicy then this is the dish for you. The chances are that you will find lots of variations of this recipe the world over and every Indian family has their own aubergine secrets. For, these are the best kind of secrets to have, of course. Aubergines have their own special place in so many cuisines, and there are wonderful ways to make them more interesting than you may think. While Italian Nonnas roast them for hearty pastas, Greek Yayas stew them in rich tomato stews; as Japanese Oka-samas deep fry them in light tempura batter, …

three-lentil-daal

Three-Lentil Daal

Great news. No, not great news. Amazing news. KO Rasoi’s recipe for Melt in the Mouth Paneer Kofta has been selected as one of the top 100 entries for the Foodista Best of Food Blogs competition. The recipe will feature in a full colour cookbook which will be published by Andrews McMeel Publishing this October. I’ll give you more details as and when I find out information. How exciting is this for us?! The little veggie blog is taking baby footsteps and I like where it seems to be heading. Cooking, eating, writing; these are the things that I can use to escape in to a world where my passion for food roams freely and relentlessly. Rather like a starving gerbil on Shandy. What I would like to do most is thank you all for such wonderful feedback and supportive comments. You are the people that make KO Rasoi shine, not other things like scrummy cheesecakes (although, those are yummy and almost as attractive than you are). Stop blushing. Moving swiftly on… In order to celebrate this exciting …