I love Indian food, and when given the choice as to what kind of restaurant I’d like to visit, it is more often than not an Indian one — except with certain friends who shall remain nameless. They won’t go near the stuff.
I love the fact that there are so many vegetarian options. I love the music in the background. And most of all, I love the amazing flavors of the various dishes. Before the quarantine, J and I had even been making plans to travel to India next winter.
Needless to say, that probably won’t happen. Nor will visiting an Indian restaurant any time soon.
So, to Plan B. While trying to keep things interesting (in the kitchen) during this plague year and test as many recipes as possible for my cookbook-in-process, I decided to make carrot halwa. But even though my cabinets have many of the herbs and spices frequently used in Indian cuisine (e.g., ginger, garlic, turmeric, cardamom, even garam masala), I didn’t have ghee.
Frankly, I’ve always been a little nervous about trying to make it, under the impression that it would be difficult to do. And the little jars of the stuff can fetch as much as $35 each. That was not going to be an option for this home cook.
But since we are at home and can’t get to our favorite restaurants, why not try making it myself? And guess what! It’s not hard at all. You just need patience. If for no other reason than the heavenly, buttery aroma that wafts through the house, I would recommend giving it a go. I used a bit on tuna steaks, and they were absolutely delicious.
Then, last night (and the reason I actually started this little experiment, if you can remember that far back) I made the first of a series of recipes for carrot halwa. It was a fabulously flavorful pudding, and super easy to whip together with only a handful of ingredients.