Today I ticked another one off my 101 in 1001 days list. I've always wanted to do an Indian cookery course and today I completed the Indian Street Food course run by Bini Ludlow.
I've tried lots of time to cook an authentic Indian curry but have never been completely successful in getting the full depth of flavour and it's always been a bit of a hit and miss affair in the kitchen. I've cobbled together the odd one or two curries which I liked but the truth is, I've never really understood what each spice adds to the overall flavour and am stuck if it needs tweaking.
Luckily, today's course addressed that very problem. The course started with an introduction to the spices we'd be using in the recipes we were going to cook, getting to recognise their appearance, taste each one and learn how best to use it. Bini also gave us a reference chart to take home, detailing lots of the other spices and their uses. This part of the course alone justified the expense for me, and I've arrived home feeling much more confident about spices in general.
Everything today was cooked from scratch. We made spicy chicken wings accompanied by a yoghurt and mint raitu; I like spicy wings but have never tasted anything as good as the ones we made today - I'll be cooking my own from now on. Next up was spicy potato balls with a tamarind chutney. This was a first for me as I've never knowingly tasted tamarind before - I love it, preferred it to the raitu, and the spicy potato balls will be appearing on my menu in the near future; they were very moreish, and a fantastic way of spicing up mashed potato. Finally, we made spiced mince lamb and tomato meatballs, which were simply heavenly.
I've put one of the chicken wings and a couple of the lamb meatballs in the freezer to see if they freeze well, and also some of the tamarind chutney (which is more like a dipping sauce). Bini said that the potato balls and the yoghurt raitu won't freeze well but will keep in the fridge for three or four days, although I don't think they will last that long!
She does lots of other courses so I'm sure I'll be going back for more. It's been a great day.