Monday, April 20, 2009
Cooking Without Borders
Next month will be the 4th Birthday of Eat With Me. In the early years I wanted to try some interactive cooking activities for us all around the country and world. So with a little input from some folks, I created Cooking Without Borders. *Yes, the logo above is stolen and altered. Thank you Lawyers Without Borders, please don't sue.
The Cooking Without Borders events were fun, but I seemed to have trouble keeping them in regular rotation. We had the first event, Cashew Chicken. The second, Chicken & Leeks and later Coconut Chicken Curry. I leaned heavily on chicken, as it was the most accessible for the most people. I'll be doing the same today.
What is the purpose of Cooking Without Borders? This is an opportunity to cook the same meal together on the same night (or within a few days if that night doesn't work for you) and then we all come back together and post comments on what we liked or disliked, etc.
When I started this, many of the readers of this blog were located outside of the Washington DC area and as much as I wanted to cook and invite them over for dinner, logistically that wouldn't work. Terri in WI, did give me the idea...cook together, eat together and maybe even watch a movie together...but from different locations! Voila!!!
The “rules of engagement” are such:
-I'll provide a full grocery list for easy shopping
-Buy your groceries prior to the event date
-Event date--prepare your meal
-Enjoy your meal, hopefully
-Following the meal, submit feedback to the EAT WITH ME blog and if you have the ability, send a photo to share your meal.
The feedback will be the most important part of the event.
-Where are you located?
-Did you follow the recipe as written?
-Did you change the cooking process or ingredients?
-Would you have liked to try something different?
-What did you drink? Wine, Beer, other? How did it pair with the food?
-Overall, how did you enjoy the meal?
After a few days, I’ll compile all the comments and add my own feedback into a new blog entry for easy reference. If I receive photos, I’ll post those as well.
So, for this Cooking Without Borders, I've decided on another Indian dish; Indian Butter Chicken.
The event date will be Saturday, April 25.
I've chosen Indian Butter Chicken because I find it to be a fairly easy recipe, with great flavor. The recipe also increases very easily. I often make at least double, or more. And the extras freeze very well! And once you have the main spice, it's a fairly economical dish.
Here is your shopping list:
1 medium/large yellow onion
fresh ginger, about a two inch knob
jalapeno, about medium size, depending on your tolerance for the heat.
1-1 1/2 pounds, boneless/skinless chicken breast
6 ounce can of tomato paste
One can of low-sodium Chicken broth*
1 pint of heavy whipping cream
Garam Masala spice blend***
*The recipe calls for 2 cups, which is 16 oz. One can of chicken broth is 14 oz. You don't need to buy two cans.
**Being that this recipe is called Indian Butter Chicken, I ask that you use real butter and not margarine. If you don't want to use butter, skip it all together.
***Garam Masala is becoming easier to find. You might have to look around your store. Sometimes it's not going to be with the regular spices, but it will be in the International Food aisle. If you have a Whole Foods nearby, they have it and the blend is really tasty. I buy mine online from Penzey's.
One final note on this event: This recipe does call for using a food processor to make the final simmering sauce smooth. You can also use a blender if you have that. If you don't have either, you can still make this recipe, you just need a little more patience to finely dice your ingredients and you'll have a more rustic version of the sauce. No problems!
Alright folks. See you on April 25.