Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bal's No-Butter Chicken AND a Giveaway

There is a small group of my baking and blogging buddies that enjoys Indian food, and every so often we're all able to make the same recipe on the same day. Given our different time zones, it rarely works out that we all make it at the same time, but we take turns picking the recipe and it's fun to compare notes. Kayte (of Grandma's Kitchen Table) and Margaret (of Tea & Scones and more importantly my 24/7 Words With Friends friend) make up the core team when we cook Indian, but they were able to recruit a few new participants, ladies we know well from their blogs and Twitter: Peggy (of Pantry Revisited),  Abby (of Stir It! Scrape It! Mix It! Bake It!) and Katie (of Making Michael Pollan Proud).

Last week was my turn to pick and I went to a fabulous new book I have, Everyday Indian by Bal Arneson. She has a show, Spice Goddess, on Cooking Channel and her enthusiasm is infectious, plus I think she's absolutely adorable. She tells stories about growing up in her village and learning how to cook from her mother and I find myself mesmerized.

Butter chicken is a classic Indian recipe, but Bal has lightened it up by using yogurt in place of the cream and oil in place of the butter. Since I'm in California, the other ladies had already made this and raved about it by the time I got home and started cooking. A recurring theme was how easy it was, which is hard to believe since most of the Indian dishes we've cooked start with measuring 1/4 and 1/2 teaspoons of endless spices. The prep on this one was easy, quick, and it was ready fast. The house smelled amazing (as long as you don't mind your house smelling like a curry, and we don't), but the real test was tasting. It was sooo delicious. I served it on plain basmati rice and it was fantastic, as were the leftovers. I'm definitely making this one again. If you'd like to give it a try, you can find the recipe here.

The reason I wanted to pick a recipe out of Bal's book is because I accidentally purchased it twice, so I have an extra copy to give away. To enter, just leave a comment on this post telling me what interests you about Indian cooking, and if you have a favorite Indian dish let me know that, too. The deadline to enter is Monday, July 18th at 9 PM Pacific time. I'll pick the winner using the random number generator. Good luck!

We have a winner! My friend the random number generator at Random.org chose comment number 10.

True Random Number Generator  10Powered byRANDOM.ORG

Number 10 is Margaret of Tea and Scones. Congrats, Margaret!


LuciFreedom said...

I love Indian cooking I live in Jamaica and some of my family members are Indians I must say my favourite Indian food is Tandoori Chicken with roti and dahl.

Kayte said...

Oh, I so want that book, if I don't win it, I need to buy it, don't I? This recipe was fantastic, it will definitely appear again here soon. Thanks for finding it and cooking with me and inspiring me to learn Indian Cuisine. Loving it...so healthy and delicious. You are such a good friend to put up with me riding on your coattails!

Peggy said...

Loved cooking with you - even in different time zones! I am curious about Indian food since it is not something I have been exposed to a lot. Loved what we made last week, loved how the corn was cool after a spicey taste of the meat. Cannot wait to try others.

Chris Simon said...

My favorite thing about Indian food is the amazing combinations of spices in the different dishes. Yes, the recipes usually have endless ingredient lists, but that's how the huge variety of flavors happens! This book sounds awesome, and I'll definitely be making this chicken soon.

Cooking With Abandon said...

I love Saag Paneer. Or any Saag. I had an Indian cookbook last year, and every recipe I tried was not-so-good. I got discouraged. I would love to try again!

Anonymous said...

I've cooked some Indian dishes over the past year or two and I'm thrilled that it's not as intimidating as I used to think. When I go out for Indian food, I almost always get Byriani (either chicken or vegetarian).

Rebecca said...

I love butter chicken! I'll definitely have to try this recipe. I'm not sure that I have a favorite Indian dish, but I got interested in Indian food after some friends from the Hyderabad area invited me over for a home-cooked, authentic meal... delicious! :)

spike. said...

I love making Indian food at home (also love the cooking show although I've only seen it once). Chana masala is one of my favorites but I love butter chicken too- this one looks great

margot said...

I have to be honest: making Indian food intimidates me a bit, but the few times I've made it, I've been happy with how it's turned out. Josh loves Indian food so I should make it more often. My favorite thing to order at restaurants is the eggplant dish, bhangan bharta (I probably spelled that wrong). I have never tried butter chicken, but you really can't go wrong with the name butter in the title.

TeaLady said...

I love our twitter cooks. They make kitchen time so much more interesting.

What a great book. I didn't realize she had one out and I watch her show a lot. Need this one.

So far, this recipe we made the other day is my favorite. I love the use of garam masala over the regular curry powder. A much more interesting flavor.

See you on WWF my 24/7 friend.

Tracey said...

I have been cooking more Indian food at home too (though I've never had it out at a restaurant so I have zero basis for comparison) - Kayte even sent me the recipe you guys were making this week but I just didn't have time to get the ingredients to cook along. My favorite dish (and I use that term very loosely) is naan. I make it far more often than I should...

Four Seasons in a Life said...

Greetings Leslie,

I was not aware that the author has a show on the food channel, so I will have to search for it, since I like cooking with a variety of different foods and spices.

At the moment I am much into North African and MIddle Eastern, adopting these to the availability of season and what is being offered in the markets.

The dish you describe in this post I cannot wait to try and report back as to my findings. I like the idea of using yogurt and oil. Since I have grape seed oil but have not had a chance to use it, this will allow me to explore.

Thank you for expanding my worldly kitchen and please include me in your generous give-away.

Warmest regards,