Category Archives: Main Course

Dal Makhani The Novice Housewife

I know I have posted about Dal Makhani once before on GMT. And while this is more or less the same recipe, it is one that I make in the slow cooker now so I thought a repost of it was necessary. Plus, there are some changes (albeit slight) to the recipe, so thought would just post the revised recipe.

In the  previous post I did give a brief introduction to Dal Makhani, but I found this article by a renowned Indian food critic, Vir Sanghvi, which dwells into the origins of Dal Makhani and as Vir Sanghvi’s research points out, the credit to the origins of dal makhani that we eat today can be attributed to Kundan Lal Gujra’s now famous hotel Moti Mahal in Daryaganj area of Delhi.

Another famous version of this dal is the five star hotel ITC’s Dal Bukhara. The Bukhara dal, according to the article, gets its thickness and creaminess from slow cooking. The chefs cook it on a low flame overnight and then, never take it off the fire. My father had told me about this earlier, so I thought of trying to cook it in my faithful crockpot and try to achieve restaurant style dal makhani and I am pretty pleased with the version I ma sharing with you all today.

The previous recipe of dal makhani I posted was a much more quick way of cooking the dal, but once I started cooking it in the slow cooker I have realized that without adding cream you can still achieve the creaminess and thickness of traditional dal makhani by just slow cooking it. Of course, adding cream and butter takes it another level of scrumptious goodness (Kundan Lal’s recipe has one kg of dal, 500 ml of cream and a full kg of butter!), but believe me, for the calorie conscious slow cooking the dal gives it the right amount of viscosity (and that rich taste) without the added fat.

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Oven baked chicken tacos The Novice Housewife

Its fun staying with family and a different kind of fun when its that side of the family that you haven’t had a chance to spend much time with.

My mom’s parents and her brother and his family stay in Toronto and these days I am staying with them. Since Canada was never much in our holiday destinations, I hardly got to meet my uncle or his family much while growing up. Now, I will be with them for more or less two months, while my course is going on.

My uncle is a fun person. Being the youngest of the three children, and having two elder sisters to pamper him, he is still a kid in many respects and loves pulling everybody’s legs and making everyone laugh. My mom’s sister’s daughter also stays close by and when she comes home, its a laughing riot in the house. Each family member is goofier than the other, messing up normal things and giving others some fodder to laugh about. Well, what would you expect from a family of Sardars, but this.

I do miss home and V and my friends back in Arizona, but I like the change that comes with this place. I especially like that I am with family and have this time to bond with my mom’s side of the family, which I never could growing up.

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spaghetti sauce-1spaghetti noodles 4 by 4spaghetti sauce-5

I have mentioned on my about me Page about my Dad’s Spaghetti Sauce and how good it is. And not that I have tried plenty of other homemade spaghetti meat sauces to compare with (I have only eaten his version), but still believe me, will you please, when I say its really good. My dad hardly ever gets in the kitchen, probably because my mother is an excellent cook, but when he does, he does a darn good job of it.

My dad is in the Indian Air Force and when I was in first grade he came to the US for a course. After he completed the course my dad took some time off so that we could travel around US and also visit my mom’s brother in Canada. Now in Canada they release this annual Milk Calendar, where they feature recipes which are “ready in 45 minutes or less, include at least 1 cup of milk, and meet the recommendations of Canada’s Food Guide to Healthy Eating”. My mom, being the avid cook she is, flicked many Milk calendars from her brother’s house. And the recipes from these calendars made way into our home. The spaghetti sauce recipe I am sharing today is one of them.

I do not know how it got to be that my dad started cooking this recipe from the Milk Calendar. I don’t remember him cooking anything before he started making this spaghetti sauce. Like I said, he hardly ever entered the kitchen to cook. But somehow he decided to try this recipe out on his own. And then from that day onwards this recipe was his thing. If I remember correctly my mom made the same sauce once, but I think I told her that Papa makes it better. I know, I was a mean kid to my mom. :/

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