Cooking marathon

I checked out Quick and Easy Indian Cooking from the library a couple weeks ago.  It was due today in fact (just renewed it on-line, I love that) and I didn't manage to cook anything from it until today.  I went shopping for the ingredients yesterday early afternoon and was all prepped to cook until I realized that starting a dish that requires 70 minutes of simmering at 5:30 was not a smart move.  Lucky for me TheHusband suggested going out for Thai when I picked him up from work.

Tonight's menu
Lamb Vindaloo (vindaloo)
Cauliflower with ginger, garlic, and green chilies (sookhi gobi)
Basmati rice
Yogurt with tomato and cucumber (timatar aur kheeray ka raita)
Garlic Naan courtesy of TJ's freezer section

First, something to note: Most of these meat recipes are only quick if you use a pressure cooker (there are instructions for both with and without a pressure cooker for most recipes).  Second, it felt like every recipe I was considering wanted me to use a large frying pan or wok.  For me that would be my beloved Caphalon Everyday pan (even if sometimes it is a bitch to clean).  I decided the meat would be okay if I cooked it in the large pot we have so I could use the everyday pan for the cauliflower and was glad I decided against a second vegetable dish.

Somehow I ended spending the entire afternoon in the kitchen.  Around 3 I thought, "oh I should throw together the riata", so I did (I also reheated my holy basil chicken and ate a late lunch at the same time).  Then I decided to start gathering everything for the lamb and cauliflower.  It is good too, because I realized that I did not have tumeric in my spice collection.  So I went to the store (that sucked about 35 minutes of my time, though I did get a little browsey and picked up white basmati instead of using the brown basmati at home and green split peas and jasmine tea).  Once I was home I decided I should chop the cauliflower fist since I only had one suitable cutting board.  Then I did a bit of mise en place with the spices (I got a set of itty bitty, 3 Tablespoons at most, small bowls once when I asked for ramekins, not quite what I had in mind but oh do I like having them around).  By the time I chopped the lamb and got it in the pan it was nearly 5:40!  I put the rice on and took a 15 minute break to check email then went back to start the cauliflower.  And somehow I managed to finish everything more or less at the same time (the cauliflower had to sit for 5 or 10 minutes while I cleaned up and waited for TheHusband to get home (lucky for us, it was almost 7:00, just as the lamb finished).  We ate and I finished cleaning up, putting the last few things in the dishwasher and washing pots.

I still can't wrap my mind around the fact that it was nearly 8:00 when I left the kitchen.  I hope I get back in the hang of cooking or pick quicker dishes next time.  But all in all I enjoyed myself, my kitchen is not a disaster area and TheHusband liked the food (he previously would not go out for Indian food with me).

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October 12, 2006. Tags: . Cooking, former Vox Blog, Thoughts.

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