Monday, November 27, 2006

I did promise cooking obsession, didn't I?

Because I wouldn't want to disappoint, at least not right away.

Tonight I felt a little creative. Like I have probably mentioned before, it's my experience that Kevin likes the stuff I cook more often when I don't use a recipe, so I'm trying to do more of that. It requires more creativity, regardless, so it's a little more fun sometimes.

I was cooking some chickpeas, anyway, so I went ahead and made a simple (if underseasoned) basmati rice pilaf with vegetable broth, shallots, and garlic, with chickpeas, ground coriander, and ground ginger added towards the end of cooking. I served it with a sprinkling of lightly chopped cilantro and sour heirloom tomato wedges all around, salted. I'd definitely add more of a kick to this if I made it again--cayenne, more coriander, perhaps more ginger, perhaps some cumin. Cumin is my spice crutch, though, so I'm trying to experiment.

As a side dish, I made a dish with red cabbage and shredded carrot. First I fried about a half teaspoon of fennel seeds in a splash of olive oil, then I added the carrot and cabbage and turned the heat up high and tossed it all around until the cabbage seemed just barely cooked, then turned off the heat and added about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, which sizzled in the hot pan. To this I added more cilantro and about two tablespoons of toasted and chopped pistachios. This dish turned out really well; both Kevin and I enjoyed it.

Someday in the future I might have a working digital camera. If I had one now, I would've posted pictures, because these dishes looked very pretty. Especially the cabbage.

I'm thinking tomorrow I'll do a (purple!) cauliflower and potato dry fry with cumin seeds and cilantro, backed up with simple channa masala (hey, I cooked a lot of chickpeas) and plain basmati rice.

The farmers' market is still selling me fresh and beautiful organic tomatoes for $2 a pound. The next time someone gives me shit about living in California, at least I'll have a good answer.


Jessica said...

I know you are on this cooking craze, but I wanted to ask if you've been to Tandoori Cafe on Steven's Creek and Lawrence Expressway?


emily said...

hmm! i have not. that is damn near close enough to be able to go during lunch, even. i will look into this... "tandoori cafe" you speak of. it's better than tandoori oven, right? 'cause i cannot abide the tandoori oven.