Suji Halwa (or sweet semolina pudding) is the one dish you need to know as the temperature starts to drop. It is the perfect escape on these Autumnal evenings… so join me as I switch on the X-factor, put on my Onesie and scuttle to the kitchen! This dish is particularly dear to me as it is the first dish my Mum taught to make when I was 11.
Suji Halwa has a warmth and sweetness that is delicately tempered by the spiciness of crushed cardamom. I usually make this dessert when I’m craving something truly comforting and easy after dinner, as it takes less than 10 minutes to dish up. Despite the homely memories, this dish is actually traditionally served as an offering in Sikh and Hindu temples. Once blessed by the priest, it is distributed amongst the congregation… and the kids (the big ones included) keep going back for more!
It gives me great pleasure in sharing the recipe to this very simple, but heart-warming pleasure with you! Enjoy… and don’t forget to send me your thoughts, and tweet me your efforts (onesies ’n all)!
Last Saturday, we hosted our Indian Vegetarian Feast supper club for 32 guests at The Spice Club. Those of you who have dined with us in the past will know, when we say “feast”, we well and truly mean it!
Dinner time in India is a family event and one of my fondest memories! We would share mouth watering dishes, and pass around fragrant rice and tandoori-hot rotis as accompaniments. God-forbid anyone would decline an extra naan when offered it! It would be the fulcrum of the day around which everything would be planned… and a truly inclusive experience.
We strive to deliver this inclusiveness and happiness to our guests at every one of our Supper Clubs… and I’m glad to say last Saturday was no exception. Our menu offered some debutant dishes, but we didn’t abandon our old Spice Club favourites. I hope the photos below do justice to what was an exceptional evening!
Urad & Chana Dal Masala otherwise known as “Maa Chole ki Dal” is one that is commonly relished in Punjabi households. Made from tempering a combination of split urad dal and chana dal (split bengal gram) lentils in a typical Punjabi masala, this dish never fails to satisfy at dinner time! This is a favourite of my Pops, especially when served with red onion, raw mango pickle and fresh hot tandoori chappatis. Creamy in texture and spicy in flavour, it’s not hard to see why it tops his list (well..he doesn’t actually have a list..but if he did, it would!). Check out the recipe below. Comments/tweets are always appreciated!
Last Saturday, we hosted our Indian Street Food cookery class at The Spice Club! We had an eclectic mix of students attend who arrived eager to learn how to prepare the delicious culinary delights that are regularly served on the roadsides in India.
Ma and I set a menu featuring regional street food snacks hailing from the north of India all the way to the south. From Puris (fried puffed breads) served with Jeera Aloo (spiced cumin potatoes), Stuffed Cauliflower Parathas served with Cucumber Raita to Urad Vada (doughnut shaped dal pakoras) served with Sambar Dal and Coconut Chutney. Hungry yet?!
Last Saturday we hosted our 5 course Rajasthani themed feast supper club at The Spice Club. Our intent was to showcase to our guests what true Rajasthani food is all about. Rajasthan is a state in the North-West of India. It translates as “Land of the Kings” and is known for it’s majestic palaces, history, rich culture and (most importantly for me) it’s mouth-watering cuisine. My Mum was born and brought up there and so I feel blessed that thanks to regular visits I have been exposed to all the wonderful aspects that this beautiful region has to offer.
In the weeks preceding our supper club, Ma and I sat down and created our 5 course menu, consisting of Rajasthani classics and new dishes with our own take on them including Basil Lassi, Pyaaz Kachori, Pakora Kadhi, Besan Aloo and a mango dessert made from home-made kulfi, crumbled gulab jamun and a saffron and rose infused sweet yoghurt. (In essence, a feast of deliciousness!).
Earlier this year, I was approached by the lovely people at Sainsburys Magazine in regards to a feature on spice inspired recipes for the Summer barbeque season for their July issue. I decided to write a recipe inspired from my Punjabi roots and created a Barbeque Masala Chicken recipe that is packed full of flavour and spice and is great cooked on the barbeque or on the grill. This recipe features a marinade made from yoghurt, fragrant Indian spices and pureed deep fried golden onion to add delicious depth. Sound like your kind of thing? Then, check out the recipe below. I also made a recipe for a simple yet satisfying Indian salsa made from radish and red onions which is refreshing and light and serves as a great accompaniment to the spicy masala chicken.
I am delighted to announce that my recipe was featured on the front cover of the magazine which I am thrilled about! The feature also included mouth watering recipes by last years Masterchef winner Shelina Permalloo, Private Chef and Indian food writer, Maunika Gowardhan and Persian food writer and Supper Club host, Sabrina Ghayour so be sure to grab yourself a copy of this month’s issue!
Our stunning Pop-Up Tent
Last Thursday saw our Indian Street Food Pop-Up at Spinningfields. We set base in a beautiful Maharaja style tent provided by the wonderful folks at Raj Tent Club on the recently laid lawns on Hardman Square. I would be lying if I said that I hadn’t spent *every*minute of my spare time praying for sunshine to fall on our event..because well, I had. Alas, we woke up to grey skies on the morning of our event (typical Manchester weather!) but it was okay as it presented us with all the more reason to inject some colour and spice into the city centre!
Our posters dotted throughout Spinningfields
As soon as we arrived, we began to cook up a storm and prepare for our menu consisting of spicy, sweet, tangy, crunchy and delicious Indian Street Food snacks. The inviting aromas began to wander throughout Spinningfields and before we knew it it was lunch time and hungry passers by drifted into our tent eager to try our freshly prepared tasty treats!