If you are a follower of this blog, you will know that paneer is one of my favorite ingredients. I love paneer as much as I love chicken. I always try to experiment with different paneer dishes. However I have rarely tried to create a well-known paneer dish like Kadai Paneer. Since today is our weekly vegetarian day, I wanted to cook a paneer dish. I looked through some cookbooks and decided on creating a Kadai Paneer.
Diwali is around the corner. I miss the sweets and special fish dishes mom cooked for us around the festival holidays. Sumi and I don’t do anything special. But we try to have a different type of fish during these days which we would not have regularly. This is because fish is considered lucky and auspicious. We bought Paiya fish yesterday. I had it once before at a friend’s place and it tasted great.
In our Indian cuisine, it’s very difficult to have any regular non-vegetarian curry without rice or bread. But ever since our low-carb diet begun, we have reduced our rice and bread intake by 90%. As a result, we always need to add some extra veggies (or fruits) or some other inventive cooking methods to have our chicken or fish curries. There was this time where we had slices of cheese (Mozzarella and Cheddar) along with chicken or the time when we grated Parmesan over the chicken.
With the Durga Puja celebrations over, it is a bit lull around here. Every Monday I feel very tired and sleepy as Boomboom can vouch for. This is because for some reason I do not get proper sleep on Sunday nights. However for a change this was not the case this week. It was a good thing too as yesterday was Lakshmi Puja. So I was able to get up in the morning and do the rituals for the Puja.
Today is the last day of Durga Puja. Sumi and I stayed home whole day. So to spend her holiday she cooked. That woman surprises me with her patience and cooking. She cooked fish, chicken and crab. Now I don’t like crabs much but Sumi swears by them. I was surprised with the result though. It was a very traditional Bengali way of preparation and was delicious. I never realized crabs would taste so good to me.
My mom cooks wonderful mutton. Khashir Mangsho (Goat meat) is a popular delicacy in Bengal and is especially served during festivals. During our Durga Puja festival, on the Maha Ashthami (eighth day), Boomboom’s side of the family definitely have this dish. The gravy is turned healthy by adding loads of vegetables. These add great flavor into the dish. I have such fond memories of childhood. During the rainy days, I used to get so excited when I returned from school to a hot meal of plain rice and mutton gravy.
I usually don’t post my own recipes here. Usually they have either been cooked by Sumi or our moms. This is always due to Sumi always having a modified and better version of my recipes. However the past few days we really wanted to try something different. Hence I decided to cook a very spicy chicken (spicy by our standards) by myself. As things would turn out, it actually tasted quite nice.
It’s starting to rain at Bangalore these days. I love the rains. I miss the fact that it rains here usually in the afternoon. When I was growing up at Ranchi, there were no such timing. In fact there were quite a few days when it rained 5-6 days continuously. I have special memories of the lunch mom used to serve during these days. After coming back from school, I had to have bath (else no lunch).
Paneer remains my all time favorite. When I was a kid (I am not one now despite what my mom wants me to believe), mom always made a paneer dish once a day. Lunch always used to contain fish, which is obvious as we were a typical Bengali family, but on Saturdays it was no fish. Instead we had a paneer dish. As far as I was concerned for me it made no difference.
Due to our diet and erratic cooking habits we always try to find the fastest way to cook food - be it chicken, fish or prawns. It’s been quite a few time, Sumi cooked prawns with the shell on. To be frank, I have never been a huge fan of prawn, leave alone cooking it with the shell on. But Sumi was adamant this time and the result was fabulous.