Shucking Your Own Corn: Therapeutic and Fresh As Can Be!

That’s right:  you said you want your corn fresh?  Well, get it while its still in the husk, shuck it right there in the store, buy it, bring it home, and drop it into a pot of salted boiling water.  Ten minutes later, you have the most tender and sweet corn that needs only a pat of butter and maybe another dash of salt.  Nothing satisfies more! 

Oh, and not only is it fresh, tasty, and satisfying, it is one of the most therapeutic and restorative actions– even if you didn’t think you needed therapy and restoration!  Be good to yourself, will you– shuck some corn!

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Green Beans & Green Peas: Yes, They Can Go Together!

Go together to complement one another, I mean.  Why ever not?  Whoever made the rule that you couldn’t bring them together in a casual stirfry?  Well, I don’t know, and am honestly not too concerned, because I write today to proclaim this small truth:  these two lovely green vegetable– Green Beans and Green Peas may indeed by brought together in a hot skillet to be married with a few simple seasonings to make for a very delectable veggie side-dish.

Oh, and what are those carrot-like pieces in the mix, you say?  Well, they’re tiny pieces of carrots, of course.  They came with the peas, so they had to go in as well!

So, here’s to a refreshing subzi today!  And my parting words of wisdom?  Step outside the pan and into the skillet to try something new.  I did, as you can see right here! 

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One Baked Potato: An Enormous Meal!

So, what could be more perfect than a large baking potato (a Russet, I think), scrubbed clean, wiped dry, wrapped in foil and baked at 425 degrees for an hour?  Well, for starters, if you’re doing one, you may as well do six.  Economies of scale and all, you see! 

And so, when you pull out your potatoes and slice right through the foil to make an opening large enough to start flaking out the fleshy insides–the steam coming up and almost giving you a facial–what more do you really need than a sprinkle of salt, and perhaps a dab of butter?  Well, if you added just those two things, you’d be in for a wonderful treat.  

But if you want a royal treat, well then, here’s what you do:  you take a handful of grated cheese of your choice (we used a sharp cheddar here) and sprinkle that on, add also some pre-cooked broccoli and then return it to the oven for another couple minutes.  When it comes out, it is nothing short of AAHHH-MAZING!  And if you wish to go completely berserk, well then sprinkle on some chives, a dollop of sour-cream, and some crumbled bacon-bits. 

That’s it!  You don’t need to eat anything else.  Because, this ain’t no ordinary baked potato– this is a gourmet potato which is a meal in and of itself.  I guarantee it:  you’ll walk away one satisfied person!

Rajma-Fava-Choley Chawal: A Twist on the Usual

Well, of course you know about Rajma-Chawal and Choley-Chawal, but how about mixing it up sometimes?  Be bold, be bright, everything’s all right!

Here’s what I did recently:  I cooked the most delectable dish of three-beans and call it my Rajma-Fava-Choley Delight.  Rajma is the kidney-bean, Fava are another lesser known red-colored fleshy beans, and Choley is the chick-pea or garbanzo bean.

Bring them together with all the regular masalas for a rich red curry (fried onions, ginger, garlic, tomato paste, dried powerdered masalas, splash of lemon), and serve with fresh hot steaming Basmati.  It’ll hit the spot right away, right on.

And for a two-punch, make some Papads on the side.  I’ve made here the Punjabi Masala variety of the Lijjat brand.

A plate of this, and trust me, even if you don’t speak Hindi, you’ll be saying, Yeh Hui Na Baat!

Palak Paneer: The Dish You Can't Get Enough Of!

It’s true:  Palak Paneer is one of those dishes you can’t stop with just one serving.  You’ll want a second, a third, and then may be another, and so on.  Well, you would– if you had the kind I make!  And I will give any Punjabi Dhaba or even a Punjabi grandma a run for their money with my Palak Paneer, hands down.

Cooked and pureed palak (spinach), onions and tomatoes come together in an aromatic seasoning of fried onions, garlic, ginger, and a blend of spices before cubes of paneer (firmed cottage cheese) are added to this creamy green goodness.

Here’s what I made yesterday.  It doesn’t get better than that, trust me!  Oh, and if you think I’m on a palak binge (with my post on Palak Pakoras from the other day), you’re right, I am.

By the way, I even make my paneer from scratch:  bring the milk to a boil, break it with lemon juice, separate the curd from the whey, press down the curdled cheese into a cheesecloth, refrigerate overnight, cut into cubes the next day, and voila, you’ve got paneer fit for a king.  Or for a batch of Palak Paneer fit for a king.

Palak, there’s so many ways to love ‘ya!  And what do you serve this with?  Rotis, parathas, phulkas, chapatis, you name it.  But if you’re funky, like me, you won’t think twice to serve it with a Ragi Dosai.  Seriously.  IT IS AN AWESOME THING!