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Sunday, 5 January 2014

DIANA: FULL SPEED AHEAD! . . . and ROGAN JOSH (Indian Lamb Curry)


Diana, 1972

A person with a good sense of humour enjoys telling funny stories.  Here’s one of Diana’s:   

On my last day of high school, about 5 girls got on bikes and headed off to the local pond.   I was last in line.
The girls were fast, but I picked up speed.    Suddenly, the girls ahead were getting off their bikes.   I struggled to locate the brakes.
The pond was getting awfully close.   Mud at the edge.   Sticky, sloppy mud.  I was going for a direct hit.  Everyone turned toward me.
I hit a bump .... it slowed me down;  then I glanced at the staring faces.  My bike hit the mud.  It fell.  I fell. 
But I missed the mud.  :)

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Indian Cuisine is one of Diana’s Favourites so, for her birthday dinner last night, I turned to one of my favourite cookbooks:


A Taste of India : by Mary S. Atwood

Mary Atwood’s MENU FOR DIANA’S BIRTHDAY DINNER

Rogan Josh (North Indian Lamb Curry)
  

Rice

Dhal (I made Atwood’s “Amti”:  one of my repeat recipes)

Fried Green Beans:  Spicy hot!

Onion Raita:  good but I prefer my Tomato-Cucumber Raita

Lemon Pickle:  Good with this dinner, but once is enough.

Phirni (Dessert):  This was very nice, but took too long.  Another time,
 I would substitute Vanilla Pudding and just decorate it with
 Pistachios, Toasted Almonds, and a sprinkling of Rosewater. 

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Mary Atwoods’ suggested dishes made for a wonderful dinner, but, for my Stand-Alone choice:
  
The ROGAN JOSH (Lamb Curry) :  prepare early

2 lbs boned leg of lamb
1 large onion:  one pound to 1 ¼ pounds
3 tbsp vegetable oil
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp grated ginger root
3 large tomatoes
1 ½ tsps. salt
½ cup plain yogurt
½ cup water
Chopped cilantro, mint, or parsley for garnish
       
        Spices:
2 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp poppyseeds
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp paprika
¼ tsp ground cardamom
½ tsp cayenne
¼ tsp saffron
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp mace

·        Slice the onion thinly and set aside.
·        Chop garlic finely and set aside on another dish.
·        Grate the ginger and add to the garlic.  Set aside.
·        Mix together all the spices in a small bowl and set aside.
·        Cut lamb into bite-size cubes.
·        Heat oil over high heat in a large frying pan.  Add onion and sauté until lightly browned.
·        Lower heat to minimum.  Add the garlic and ginger.  Then add all the spices and stir for 3 minutes.
·        Add lamb.  Raise heat to medium high and stir for 5 minutes.
·        Add yogurt, water, salt, and tomatoes.  Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.
·        Turn off heat and reheat just before serving.
·        Sprinkle with chopped cilantro, parsley, or mint leaves.

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Whoever hides mistakes will never improve.
(Old Ukrainian Proverb)