Saturday, July 14, 2007

Gujerati-Style Green Beans Review

5 stars (on a 5 star scale)
p. 131

Very good and easy to make. Nicely garlicky, perhaps because the cloves I used were abnormally large. I think the mustard seeds add something as well.

I used less oil than suggested because I used a non-stick skillet.

Some notes on the ingredients:
  • For the one-half to one dried red chili, I used one arbol chili because that's what I had at hand.
  • I forgot the ground black pepper.

On a plate.


And here's two more pictures that admittedly aren't very relevant to the dish:

The chopped but as yet uncooked green beans with which I made this dish.

A close-up of the chopped but uncooked green beans.

Tandoori-Style Chicken (Tandoori murghi) Review

3.5 stars (on a 5 star scale) (may be 4 if left to marinate for a long time)
p. 90-91

Quite different from tandoori chicken I get in restaurants:
  • Restaurant chicken tends to be spicy. This was not.
  • Restaurant chicken is often dry. This was moist throughout.
  • Restaurant chicken often isn't tart. This was tart, likely from the effect of heating yogurt. I'm told tandoori chicken is frequently supposed to be a bit tart, so this taste shouldn't be as surprising as it was to me.
The chicken was decent but not that interesting -- chicken that I'd be fine eating again but probably won't make again, at least given how it turned out the first night. Leftovers were better, possibly due to the longer time they sat, and also less tart. If the quality on the first night were as good as the leftovers, I might make it again.

Some notes on the ingredients:
  • I used drumsticks and thighs. Removing skin from the drumsticks is a pain. Next time buy de-skinned chicken!
  • I skipped the food coloring.
Some notes on the preparation:
  • I marinated the chicken for only six hours, a minimal amount of time.
  • Almost all of the paste went through the strainer.
  • I baked the chicken at about 550 degrees, the highest temperature my oven would go. When I checked the chicken after twenty minutes, it looked like it had just completed cooking.

Another picture of the chicken. This picture misrepresents its actual color.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Drunken Orange Slices (Sharabi narangi) Review

3.5 stars (on a 5 star scale)
p. 225

An extremely simple dish of sliced oranges, cinnamon, and Grand Marnier -- no more than the sum of its parts. I'm fairly indifferent between eating it and eating simple, unadorned orange slices.

It's neat that one can taste each ingredient, but so what. The Grand Marnier, some claim, comes more in the aftertaste of a bite than in a bite itself.

Yogurt with Eggplant (Baigan ka raita) Review

4 stars (on a 5 star scale)
p. 212

An easy to make dish of mashed eggplant in yogurt. I like the refreshing coolness of the combination of the yogurt, scallions, and mint. It's better chilled, which implies that one needs to let the mashed eggplant cool for a long time, enough so that after mixing with the eggplant, the result is still cool.

I tried eating it with pita chips, but felt the flavor of the chips I had overwhelmed the dish. It's much better eating it with a fork or spoon.