Thursday, June 11, 2009


Spice quest

I read The Pioneer Woman Cooks for Ree's sassiness mostly. Oh and I'd love to win a Kitchen Aid mixer, but her 6000 plus responses make that a little unlikely. Her recipes can be heavy on the heavy ingredients. (Scroll down for her peanut butter Oreo pie, shudder.) But sometimes I'm inspired by the recipes that don't rely so much on heavy cream. She had a guest last week post his recipe for chicken tikka masala. Although his recipe *does* call for heavy cream, I've been smitten and I must make it now. Finally got to the reg'lar grocery store last night to purchase all the ingred. except for the spices. Ground coriander and garam masala were for some reason missing from this Kansas discount bag-it-yourself grocery store. And from the mainstream grocery store near my house.

So I had a little project. I went hunting on my lunch break today. The Asian food store (I will note it's proper name, the Oriental Super Store, but I'd prefer not to use it) yielded ground coriander and when I asked for garam masala, the clerk told me about an Indian store in a nearby gas station. And then he added that there was an Iranian food store farther west in town. So my knowledge has grown by leaps and by bounds today. I bet I could get sumac at the Iranian store if I wanted to make kuku. (Now I've gone to look up eggplant kuku and it doesn't actually call for sumac. It was a baked persian rice dish I was thinking of. Hm.)

Back to the matter at hand, I hied me to the gas station mart. There were many things on the shelves there but I couldn't find my grail. The clerk knew what sector the spice mix was in and soon I had half a pound of garam masala in hand. It's a pretty big bag, I'll have to find a jar to keep it in. Even if I make an effort to cook more Indian recipes I am doubtful I can use this all up. But better too much than too little. Quest complete! On with the chicken tikka assembling.

Soixante dix

My MIL is turning 70 next week. I imagine that's a big one to experience. It's a milestone for the rest of us too, trying to think of her in her 70s. She has done a very good job of taking care of herself financially and medically. Thank goodness since Nod and I are still flailing and her other son's family is in Wales. She deserves a big fancy something on her birthday. The girls are making some art for her. I've taken a super cute picture of the girls holding up "70" and am making a card. So it's homemade sincerity from us, but we'll make it as fancy as we can.


June continues cool here, it's a little eerie. I am mostly enjoying it. And I do realize that if temps were more 'normal' I would be complaining about sweating and so on. Our A/C is fixed but mostly idle which pleases this utility bill payer. Katy's summer group went to the outdoor pool yesterday and shivered. They're going again tomorrow and I don't think that water's had time to warm up much.


Bee said...

Yes, 70 is big. Your card sounds really cute -- and I'm sure she will appreciate that.

Funnily enough, I ate chicken tikka masala for lunch today -- but only a Marks and Spencer's version. Those Indian spices are mainstream here . . . but then I can't find the sweetened coconut OR the crushed pineapple I need for carrot cake.

We pretended it was warm enough to eat outside tonight. Everyone but Sig was shivering, but then he was wearing a fleece.

Nimble said...

My tikka masala turned out! It was wonderful and I wanted to lick the pot when we finished it.

I am imagining you shivering in the garden. I checked San Francisco this morning and it was 53 and foggy. In contrast to you pale denizens of cool climes, we had a hot day today 6/17, mid 90s.