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My Indian cooking lesson

 

I was overjoyed when I heard about the opportunity to take part in a cooking lesson during my yoga retreat in Bangalore in February.  After a couple of days of eating delicious vegetarian food (never dull, always flavourful), I wanted to dig in and get my hands dirty.  So I enthusiastically raised my hand when a headcount was required. And off we went to the  kitchen to assist three chefs.  An added bonus was that my group had made a list of preferred dishes beforehand.  We knew that we would be preparing at least one or two of our favourites.  In order of preparation, we observed and participated in cooking the following dishes: Saag Paneer (paneer cheese with spinach), Daal (yellow lentils), Kulfi (cardamom iced dessert) and mixed vegetable curry. 

 

 

The three chefs decided to humour me and accept to pose with me in their midst.  I stand out in more ways than one!

As you might well know, spices are critical in Indian cuisine.  Here are all the spices on display for our cooking lesson.  The "spice wheel" highlights the central spices in Indian cooking (from the top and clockwise): garam massala, chana massala, cumin powder, cumin seeds, chilli powder, mustard seeds, and turmeric.  Broadly speaking, other key ingredients bring flavour to Indian cooking.  They are; ginger, onions, garlic, cashews, salt, and oil, to name a few. 

The ensuing hour was filled with lively banter and laughter as we got to grips with the ins and outs of Indian cuisine.  If you want to have a browse or if you are feeling adventurous, here are the recipes for each dish prepared:

 

Saag Paneer

Daal

Kulfi

Mixed Vegetable Curry

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