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Showing posts from January, 2015

Spaghetti Bolognese

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What’s your most favourite Italian dish? After the pizza, I mean. If you're not a food snob and wont to drop names like “Zabaglione” (which is quite a sublime dessert, by the way) or “Saltimbocca alla Romana” (a delectable veal concoction), likely as not, you will say it’s spaghetti Bolognese. It’s simple, it’s hearty, and it’s available everywhere — which also accounts for its popularity.
Unfortunately, in India at least, the spaghetti Bolognese is a much abused dish. It often tastes a lot like spaghetti with keema curry, or spaghetti with minced meat groaning under an overwhelmingly sour tomato sauce.
I can tell you about a horrendous spaghetti Bolognese I had at Calcutta’s Bengal Club a few years ago. The so-called Italian restaurant there was being managed by an outfit called Don Giovanni at that time. It was an oily, spicy, minced meat sauce served with tough, underdone pasta. It was nothing short of an abomination. 

So anyway. Here’s my recipe of spaghetti Bolognese. I did read…

Kissa Khichuri Ka

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It was Saraswati Puja yesterday — my first since I moved to Delhi. In between setting up house, settling down and finding my feet at work in a new city, I haven’t managed to do much cooking for pleasure lately. Saraswati Puja is a special day, however, a day redolent with childhood memories. Memories of the Puja at my aunt’s house, of my mother draping me in a small-sized “basanti” (yellow) saree, which invariably came unstuck after a couple of hours. Of murmuring “Jaya Jaya Devi Charaachara Shaare…” before the resplendent idol. And most of all, of the glorious food that was to be had after the puja was done. There was khichuri and begun bhaja, luchi, kheer, kuler aumbol, murir moa, khoiyer moa… Since my Mom’s family came from east Bengal, there was also the delightful ritual of jora ileesher biye, followed by lots of dishes featuring the peerless fish.
The chilly winter morning in Delhi yesterday brought back those memories sharply. I longed for the airy luchis, that thick creamy khe…