Cooking Indian Food at Home – Where to Start?

If you read my article, Curry – A Journey, published on the Curry page of this site, you’ll know that my first experiences of the dish were of the generic variety which the British invariably cooked and ate when living abroad a few decades ago. You’ll also know that I then discovered “real” Indian cookery and decided that as I couldn’t afford to eat out that much, I needed to learn how to cook the stuff myself. My first stop then, was a local bookshop, where the choice of books on Indian cookery was somewhat limited. However, I struck lucky and discovered a book called Indian Cookery by Madhur Jaffrey – what a find. Written in simple language but with …

Cooking With Vegetables

With more and more people nowadays becoming concerned about the different heath issues and the different new diseases that have been discovered recently without any chances of cure as of the moment, majority are trying to incorporate more into their meals vegetable dishes while others are turning themselves into die hard vegetarians. Everybody is aware of the fact that eating vegetables is very good for our health but sad to say people would prefer to have a burger and fries over a bowl of salad. It is also difficult especially for parents to let their children eat veggies partly because they don’t find them as tasty as other food types. You have to admit that there are really certain vegetables …

Tips For Spicing Up Seafood

The allure of exotic spices launched Columbus on his journey of discovery. Today, home chefs can explore new taste sensations by using spices and other flavorful ingredients to add a new world of flavor to fresh fish and seafood. “There’s nothing like the fresh flavors of herbs and spices for cutting unhealthy calories without sacrificing taste,” said Red Lobster Executive Chef Michael LaDuke, who offers the following simple tips for enhancing the natural flavor of fresh fish and seafood: World of Flavors: An easy recipe that turns fresh fish into an exotic dish is topping tilapia with a mixture of soy sauce, lime juice, orange juice, fresh ginger, garlic and cilantro. To produce a richer flavor, make the soy sauce …

The Well-Stocked Pantry — A Cook’s Secret Weapon

Doing any job is easier when you have the right tools on hand. One of a cook’s best tools — and secret weapons — is having a well-stocked pantry. Cooking is much simpler if you know that you’ve already got what you need on hand, and aren’t going to have to run to the corner market every time you want to fix a meal. Having a well-stocked pantry is also the secret weapon of every “Hostess with the Mostest” especially when unexpected guests drop by. You’ll be able to make every guest feel special and welcome because, whether it is appetizers for four or dinner for ten, you can handle it with style and panache. In fact, your reputation — …

The Cooking of Kerala

Kerala is situated on the South West coast of India right beside Tamil Nadu. The capital is Cochin with its bustling harbour lined with fishing nets and home to fishing boats of all shapes and sizes. Much of the architecture has been influenced by the Chinese who traded along the coast leaving legacy of cooking pots similar to woks, cleavers and pickling jars. As well as the Chinese, the abundance of spices in Kerala attracted the attentions of the early Phoenicians, Syrians, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans all of whom were happy just to trade and return home. Fighting over the territory didn’t begin until the late 15th Century when the British, Dutch, Portuguese and French tried to stake their claims …

Szechwan Cuisine

The cuisine of the Western region of China is well-known for its spiciness, but many Western palates overlook the complex interplay of savory, sour, hot and sweet flavors that underlie the fiery spice of the Szechwan pepper and other spices that give the Szechwan cuisine its characteristic burn. For decades, most of the world was familiar mainly with Cantonese cuisine, and thought of it as ‘Chinese cuisine’. In reality, though, China is an enormous country that encompasses nearly every kind of climate imaginable. The amazing variety of foods, spices and climates have led to many distinct styles of Chinese cuisine. Szechwan cuisine, originating in a steamy, sub-tropical climate, includes smoked, pickled and spiced foods, as well as foods spiced with …

Some Different Ideas for Cooking Rice

Rice needs to be thoroughly washed. A good way to do this is to put it into a colander, in a deep pan of water. Rub the rice well with the hands, lifting the colander in and out the water, and changing the water until it is clear; then drain. In this way the grit is deposited in the water, and the rice left thoroughly clean. The best method of cooking rice is by steaming it. If boiled in much water, it loses a portion of its already small percentage of nitrogenous elements. It requires much less time for cooking than any of the other grains. Like all the dried grains and seeds, rice swells in cooking to several times …

Rice Cooking Basics with Almond Rice Recipe

A Look at Rice When cooking rice the size of the grain is the most important thing. Due to the thousands of varieties of rice found all over the world which have differing flavors and aromas, it can be problematic to find the exact right one for your dish. Long-grain rice usually runs four to five times long as it does wide. It is typically dry and fluffy after it is cooked. The grains do not clump. Some examples of long grain rice are Basmati (aromatic, having a rich nutty flavor; used a lot in Indian cooking), brown long-grain rice (husk removed with a nutritious bran layer, slightly chewy, mild nutty flavor), finishing off with white or polished long-grain rice …

A Beginners Guide to Chinese Cookery

Introduction When I first ate Chinese food in the UK in the 1970s, it was really quite unappealing. Everything came in a gloopy sauce and seemed to taste the same, due to the overuse of monosodium glutamate, supposedly a flavour enhancer but in reality, nothing of the kind. Then in the 1980s a new breed of Chinese restaurant arrived (at least it took that long to reach the provinces) which provided lighter, tastier Chinese cooking demonstrating regional differences. There was one drawback, however, which was that this new type of restaurant was much more expensive than the original cheap ‘n tasteless ones. Consequently, I thought how nice it would be to cook Chinese food at home but I had no …