Author Topic: Ethnic and Regional Cooking  (Read 102537 times)

Offline capozzoli

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #765 on: September 27, 2010, 03:42:04 PM »
garam = (hot)  Masala= (mix) , not sure why they call it hot. cause it usually isnt.

Sounds like you guys know your Indian food.

Tonight we had some typical Indian fare. In various combination this meal is probably the most common eaten in India. They have all different ways of cooking rice and different types of legumes.

It is their version of rice and beans.


Lemon Rice and masala dal.

Probably a good thing to start with while learning Indian cooking. It will give you a good grasp of the Indian flavors and how to use them.

These lentil dishes and the biryani rice dishes will get you going for sure.

Now for dessert Im gonna make a nice masala chai.

« Last Edit: September 27, 2010, 03:47:05 PM by capozzoli »
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Offline nicneufeld

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #766 on: September 27, 2010, 04:14:59 PM »
I think the idea behind "garam" is hot as in warming, from the warming spices that we normally use in desserts (cinnamon, etc), not hot as in mirch, chili spicy.  You know what's funny, you read enough Indian cookbooks and you start substituting the Indian names for ingredients.  Mirch, saunf, jeera, hing, etc!  Can get confusing.

I love dal.  One of the most forgiving dals to cook into a puree is the red/salmon colored masoor dal.  Cooks quickly.  Toor dal I've sometimes had troubles with!  Chana dal (chickpeas) is more common for things like masala dal, where the chickpeas are not mashed.

Basmati rice really isn't negotiable, its quite unique...you can get it for larcenous, outrageous prices at many grocery stores as a specialty rice, but you can get it quite reasonably at an Indian market.  I pay $5.99 for 4lbs, which I'm sure I could get a better price if I bought in larger bulk, but its much cheaper than my supermarket...

I once made masala chai and it freaked me out.  I still don't get why...I drink cup after cup of black coffee every day and never notice any effect of caffeine, then I drink a few cups of masala chai and it totally sends me into a caffeine fit, felt sick and jittery for hours.  Maybe because the recipe has you boil the leaves instead of steeping them?  Ah well.  Tasty though.

Offline dj99

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #767 on: September 27, 2010, 04:47:04 PM »
I love the Indian markets for getting conehead amounts of spices for cheap!

One small correction/clarification to above.  Chana dal is a smaller relative of the chickpea (garbanzo).  Thanks for reminding me about it because I bought 10 pounds of this a while back, and have yet to figure out why it's the most popular in India.  I think I didn't cook it enough to bring out its "sweet and nutty" flavor when I cooked it up.  I'll give it another try.

http://www.foodsubs.com/Lentils.html
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Offline capozzoli

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #768 on: September 27, 2010, 04:47:39 PM »
If things were not confusing enough with dal, there are several varieties of channa dal. http://www.foodsubs.com/Lentils.html

Yeah they are masoor dal above.

We buy the rice in the 10 lb bags of basmati.I think we pay $8 for the top of the shelf long grain stuff. I usually keep a large bag of basmati that I get from the Indian store and a 20 lb bag of jasmine rice from the Vietnamese

Recently learned a way to cook basmati very quickly. The guy at the Indian grocery store told me. Doesnt work if you are making byryani or a plov but it works great for plain rice. He told me you can cook rice like pasta. I was confused then he explained.

Use 5 cups of water for every one cup of rice. (crazy I know) First bring the salted water to a boil, then add the rice. boil on med for about five mins and then try some to make sure it is tender to your liking. then strain it well like pasta. Works great.

Hey bluesman, next time you are up we should go to the Subzi Mandi. Its a great Indian store. It is the size of a regular grocery store.It has three isles dedicated to spices. Many that I have never heard of.

Different subject, we went to Long Beach Island for the weekend.Loads of fun.We went to this landmark German restaurant there called Dutchman's Brau haus. It was a really nice place with great vies, the staff was very nice but I have never been to a worse restaurant in my life. I had the saur braten it was just awful. It was just over cooked roast beef with a gravy that tasted like it was instant gravy mix made with vinegar. The mashed potaotes were instant.  :o I cant believe it. My wife had a pork stew that was over cooked pork in can tomatoes. I have never been so disappointed in my life. We were going to complain and leave without paying but we were starved and regrettably stayed to eat. Awful! Prices were high too.

If you are ever in LBI stay away from this restaurant.  I wont say stay away completely cause there is a great beer bar out side on the dock called Quell .Great selection of beers and nice crowd. Just dont go inside the restaurant.

I have to make some saur braten soon cause damn, I feel dirty.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2010, 04:55:32 PM by capozzoli »
Beer, its whats for dinner.

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Offline dj99

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #769 on: September 27, 2010, 04:56:59 PM »
I'll have to try that way to make rice italian style!

I make my basmati and jasmine rice in the microwave since I found out how with a recipe from the cookbook "Moghul Microwave".

Take cups of rice & water, 1 cup rice to 2 cups water ratio, in a microwave dish with a dash of salt.  Cook, uncovered 15-18 minutes on high, or until most of the water is evaporated or absorbed.  Cover and cook on high 4 minutes more.  Fluff with a fork.  I have done this many, many times.  I have only cooked 2 cups of rice at a time this way.
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Offline beerocd

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #770 on: September 27, 2010, 06:13:38 PM »
Different subject, we went to Long Beach Island for the weekend.Loads of fun.We went to this landmark German restaurant there called Dutchman's Brau haus. It was a really nice place with great vies, the staff was very nice but I have never been to a worse restaurant in my life. I had the saur braten it was just awful. It was just over cooked roast beef with a gravy that tasted like it was instant gravy mix made with vinegar. The mashed potaotes were instant.  :o I cant believe it. My wife had a pork stew that was over cooked pork in can tomatoes. I have never been so disappointed in my life. We were going to complain and leave without paying but we were starved and regrettably stayed to eat. Awful! Prices were high too.

It'd be so cool to own a business that didn't give a damn about repeat business. I got hit like that last time I was in Toronto at a seafood restaurant. Pier XX something or another alluding to left coast fish type places. Lot's of glossy ads in the travel mags, in the hotel directory, in the coupon books, just everywhere. Man it sucked!

There was a Balkan bistro though that made up for it. Mom and Pop shop - it was cool.
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Offline capozzoli

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #771 on: September 27, 2010, 06:27:55 PM »
The German place was packed too. Guess the masses just dont care.


Wow that reminds me, I should make some risotto soon. Need that round Aborio rice for that.  

Yeah, I love my Indian grocery store. They have a whole section of cookware. I could go nuts in there.

I got a Indian bicycle there too. Its a Hero. Largest bicycle manufacturer in the world. Bigger than all the others put together I here.

Its one of these.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoxS0IDiv7Y i

Beer, its whats for dinner.

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Offline bluesman

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #772 on: September 27, 2010, 06:35:38 PM »
Hey bluesman, next time you are up we should go to the Subzi Mandi. Its a great Indian store. It is the size of a regular grocery store.It has three isles dedicated to spices. Many that I have never heard of.

Sounds like a plan!

I need to get some welding done soon.  ;)

Hey that Lemon Rice and masala dal looks like something for me to start out with.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #773 on: September 27, 2010, 09:43:55 PM »
Different subject, we went to Long Beach Island for the weekend.Loads of fun.We went to this landmark German restaurant there called Dutchman's Brau haus. It was a really nice place with great vies, the staff was very nice but I have never been to a worse restaurant in my life. I had the saur braten it was just awful. It was just over cooked roast beef with a gravy that tasted like it was instant gravy mix made with vinegar. The mashed potaotes were instant.  :o I cant believe it. My wife had a pork stew that was over cooked pork in can tomatoes. I have never been so disappointed in my life. We were going to complain and leave without paying but we were starved and regrettably stayed to eat. Awful! Prices were high too.

If you are ever in LBI stay away from this restaurant.  I wont say stay away completely cause there is a great beer bar out side on the dock called Quell .Great selection of beers and nice crowd. Just dont go inside the restaurant.
I grew up on LBI, but left after high school and never went back for very long.  Never went to the Dutchman, but I know it was pricey.  Next time try the Owl Tree, if it's still there.  Great food.  Kind of pricey but worth it, or at least it was 20 years ago or so.  Saw Ray Liotta there once.  A bit far from the Dutchman though.

That rice trick is cool, it makes perfect sense but I never thought of that.  I like the rice cooker I have though, I can set the timer in the morning and have cooked rice when I get home.  So it's like it's done in no time at all :)
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Offline capozzoli

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #774 on: September 28, 2010, 04:51:50 AM »
Get out, what part of LBI? We stay in Beach Heaven. But I like Barniget much better. Thats where Old Barney is. And Mustache Bills diner. There are lots of really great restaurants on LBI, I picked the Dutchman cause of beer. Still a mistake though. Should have eaten and then gone there.





The squirt did all 340 steps herself.



Sorry for the diversion.

Beer, its whats for dinner.

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Offline nicneufeld

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #775 on: September 28, 2010, 05:08:13 AM »
The German place was packed too. Guess the masses just dont care.

The masses like instant mashed potatoes!  The idea of a bad sauerbraten though, just sounds stomach turning.  Sauerbraten is one of those dishes that hangs in the balance between excellence and abhorrent vomitousness, with all the vinegar in it.  Someone doing it badly, I can just see that bypassing just being unacceptable or lackluster and going straight to terribly, ungodly bad.

Yeah, that'd be really disappointing, particularly because German food can be so good when done right...its very hearty homestyle food.  Our local German place isn't cheap, but I leave there each time thinking that I could come close to cooking a meal that good...but not quite there, yet.  The schnitzel is perfect.

Maybe their problem is that its a German place that was started by a Dutchman! 

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #776 on: September 28, 2010, 09:07:02 AM »
Get out, what part of LBI? We stay in Beach Heaven. But I like Barniget much better. Thats where Old Barney is. And Mustache Bills diner. There are lots of really great restaurants on LBI, I picked the Dutchman cause of beer. Still a mistake though. Should have eaten and then gone there.
We lived in Surf City.  Summer job was at Farias's rentals until I was old enough for a year round job, then I worked at the Surf City pharmacy.  Lots of good memories.  I was back about 10 years ago and the place had really changed, but haven't been back since.

And since this is supposed to be about regional cooking, there's lots of great seafood shops to get fresh fish and clams.  Flounder, lightly breaded and pan fried, or steamed littlenecks . . . delicious.  Fresh bluefish, also excellent.
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Offline capozzoli

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #777 on: September 28, 2010, 02:57:02 PM »
Yeah, I dont know what I was thinking. Should have just gone out for seafood. There were still a few places open but it looked like most wrapped it up for the season.

Pinky's was still open should have just gone there.

Stopped at Surf City Fishery on the way home. Got some beautiful scallops that Im pretty sure were not local and some local flounder.

I lightly chopped the scallops and made sort of a stuffing for the flounder, mixed it with a little butter white wine and old bay. then broiled it. Squeezed lemon on it before serving. WOW. Guess that made up for it.

I love the land lubber pirate stories of long beach island. Ya know the ones with many of the early residents said to walk an ass in circles on the beach with a bright lantern on it to try and trick the ships into thinking that it was the light house. The ships thinking it was the inlet would turn in and crash on the sholes and then the booty and the dead would wash on shore to be plundered.

The locals claim there is no validity to these stories. Yet it is documented that when there was a wreck and the sirens sounded lots of people flocked to the beach to see what was going to wash ashore. HMMM.
If you ask me they are all still pirates, at least at the Dutchman they are.  :D

I have a couple of blue fish that were caught by a friend up in Cape Cod. gonna smoke them for sure.
Beer, its whats for dinner.

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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #778 on: September 28, 2010, 03:09:43 PM »
I really miss the smoked whiting.  But then I can get really good smoked salmon now.  There are tradeoffs.

Here's a question - Maine lobster, or Dungeness crab?  I honestly can't decide which I prefer, both are so good fresh.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline jeffy

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Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« Reply #779 on: September 28, 2010, 03:25:48 PM »
I had a crab roll at lunch today at Gritty mcDuff's in Portland, Me.  Although it was pretty good I think I'd have to say I prefer Dungeness crab.
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