Indian Cuisine Recipes

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Indian Dinner Party Menu Recipe

Indian Dinner Party Menu

05.24.10 by Jackie
We hosted an Indian classical music party over the weekend. The artist was Kankana Banerjee. If like me, you know nothing about Indian classical music, Ms. Banerjee is "one of the leading exponents of classical music in India". She is the recipient of the Kala Saraswati, Andhra Ratna Award which is one of the most prestigious awards from the Government of Andhra Pradesh (from smashits.com). My father-in-law admires her music very much, and we had the honor of listening to her perform. As I mentioned, I haven’t heard any Indian classical music before, so this was quite an experience for me. My little munchkin (my 5-year-old sister-in-law) on the other hand is an old pro; she is very fond of it and has been singing with her Daddy every evening in anticipation of the concert. I do however know food, and I thought it would be fun to share with you all the dishes that were served. You may not be hosting a music party at your home any time soon, but that doesn’t mean that these dishes can’t make a guest appearance at your dinner table!


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Chana Milk Halwa (Besan Burfi) Recipe

Chana Milk Halwa (Besan Burfi)

02.23.10 by Jackie

If you're familiar with French pâtes de fruit or fudge, you'll want to try the Indian / Middle Eastern equivalent,  called halwa. Halwa literally means "sweet" in Arabic. It can be made with different ingredients such as carrots, pumpkin, yams, beets, semolina and many types of beans, lentils or nuts.

Daddy (my father-in-law) had a craving for some chana dal halwa, so my mother-in-law made several batches this weekend. To the chana dal, she added roasted cashew nuts (Kaju in Urdu) for flavor and texture. This particular recipe also calls for a large quantity of clarified butter, or gheeGhee is popular in Indian cuisine and can be found at almost any Indian grocery store. This dessert is definitely not low fat or low calorie, but the taste and texture are extraordinary. Store-bought halwa cannot compare.

We made a huge batch and stored them in tins in the refrigerator. The girls placed the sweet candy in cellophane gift bags and tied a pretty bow around them to give away to their friends and teachers. Whether  or not you decide to share the dessert with others, you should definitely find time to make some. Your efforts will definitely be rewarded.


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Kaju Pista Rolls (Indian Cashew and Pistachio Sweets) Recipe

Kaju pista rolls are Indian sweets that are very similar to marzipan. It's almost like edible Play-Doh. Kaju and pista respectfully means cashew nuts and pistachio in Hindi. I guess there is a similarity with French, we called cashews, noix de cajou. I'm just thinking out loud.

Anyways, these cylinderical shaped mithai (Hindi for sweets) look very playful and are absolutely delicious. I find many Indian desserts too sweet for my palate, but these treats are just perfect.  I can never eat just one, and if you make this recipe, you won't be able to either.


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Vegetarian Indian Curry Tofu Pot Pie Recipe

A pot pie is a medley of vegetables and meat in a thick sauce, wrapped in a pie crust. I love chicken pot pie. Unfortunately, I can never share this meal with my hubby Lulu since he's a vegetarian. I always try to adapt what i eat to Lulu's dietary restrictions. Today, I tested a fusion pot pie based on the sauce from my Ma-Po tofu recipe and a curry sauce. I added fried tofu for the protein, and included shitake mushrooms with the vegetables that traditionally go into this English dish.

Of course, if you love meat like me, you could substitute cooked chicken for the tofu.

vegetarian pot pie


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Lima Beans Paneer and Saffron Basmati Rice (Vegetarian Biryani) Recipe

Vegetarian biryani is a vegetable curry with saffron basmati rice. This dish is truly authentic Indian cuisine. I always make Biryani when we have a big crowd at home. Indian food is meant to be eaten by a big group.

Paneer is an Indian cheese that you commonly fry and add to rice or vegetables. It is pretty firm and does not melt when heated. The kids love vegetarian biryani and the saffron color brings a nice ...The same dish, when prepared with meat (usually mutton, goat or chicken), is traditional wedding fare.  One of Lulu's uncles told me that if he goes to a large Indian function and doesn't get biryani he feels cheated.


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