This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending an Indian Cooking Class taught by my friend Steve and my new friend Lori. It was at a local co-op and for free even!
They started the class out by showing up how to make Garam Masala, a spice blend, from scratch. They roasted the cumin, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and black peppercorns in a heavy cast iron pan for several minutes. It smelled fantastic while they were roasting. The amazing smell lasted the entire night as well! Then, after they had cooled, ground them in a spice grinder. The garam masala was used in several of the later recipes.
The above is Besan Poora which is essentially chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour crepes. They were more like pancakes, and they went really well with the tomato chutney. They used my tomato chutney recipe for the class! Everyone seemed to really like it which was nice.
Next, Steve whipped up some onion and spinach pakoras. He cut up the veggies and then mixed them with the batter and spices. After letting them sit for a while, he then fried them until they were a delicious golden brown. These also were great with the tomato chutney.
Lori showed up how she makes chana masala which is one of my favorite dishes. It is essentially a chickpea curry with onions, garlic, ginger, and cilantro. She used the garam masala made earlier to spice it. It was nice with the rice. I kind of wished for some roti (indian flatbread) at this point though as I love chana masala with roti.
Finally, Steve showed us how he made Malai Kofta. It was a pretty involved recipe since you make the fried kofta balls first and then pour the gravy over the top. This was a great recipe, but it seemed rather time consuming.
I really enjoyed the class. The two teachers were great, and the interaction with the other students was good as well. I enjoyed swapping ideas with the others. I also enjoyed seeing how others cook some of the foods that I love. The class was long at three hours, but it was worth it. The food was delicious, and everything smelled so amazing!
My favorite was the pakoras as that isn’t something I would make at home. I try to avoid frying if possible. I also enjoyed tasting someone else making my tomato chutney recipe. I would go again if they have another class.
Resources Discussed in Class:
- Tomato Chutney Recipe
- Vegan Indian Cooking: 140 Simple and Healthy Vegan Recipes (Besan Poora Recipe)
- Isa Does It Cookbook (Malai Kofta Recipe)
- Post Punk Kitchen (Chana Masala Recipe)