A Change of Cuisine

Michael and I love all kinds of food!! He loves to cook all kinds of food and I love to EAT all kinds of food.

In the past, his specialty has been Italian and we have enjoyed amazing Pork Milanese, Lemon Pasta, Turkey Meatloaf, and other delights!!

For Christmas, he was given a book about Indian food and decided to give a few recipes a try.

But first, he needed to make a Masala!!

A Masala is a blend of ground spices and you don’t just go out and buy a bottle…..you make it yourself!!

The recipe that he wanted to start with needed two different Masalas that used THESE spices……

He started the process by putting all of the seeds and pods into a small skillet and toasting them slightly…..

As the wonderful aroma permeated the house, it compelled me to join in the fun!!

It also called for ground Nutmeg…..but not pre-ground in a jar, but from a whole Nutmeg…..

All of this was added to the spice grinder……

….and the grinding began. Again, the aroma was amazing!!

So, at the end of the first cooking session, there were two bags of Masala…..Garam and Chat.

NOW…what to use them for!!!

The first meal was “Kati rolls with Pickled Onion and Green Chilli (the Indian spelling of Chili) Salad” and it was magnificent……

The meat was pilled on the Paratha bread, topped with pickled onions and a dollop of Yogurt…..


A rite of summer…..

There are several things that tell me that summer is here and one of those is making Pesto!!! For some reason, basil LOVES our herb bed and we always put at least 5 plants into the ground.

Today was the day to harvest the Basil and turn it into creamy Pesto. Michael compared it to hog-killing day on the farm!!!

So, here is the day in photos…..






We had fun working together to make these delights and will sure enjoy them in the middle of winter!!! It will be a sweet reminder of the warmth of summer!!

Summer 2020….week 1 review

Well, the first official week of my summer has passed and I am happy to look back and see all that was accomplished!!

On Tuesday, Michael and I visited a local Art Gallery (Lyndon House) and enjoyed seeing their 45th Annual Juried Show. We enjoyed many of the pieces and I particularly enjoyed seeing works by some of my friends.

from local quilt artist…..Elizabeth Barton
“Girl in Yellow Hat” by guild member, Terri J. (One of my favorites ever!!)
“Razzle Dazzle Maze” by guild member, Diane K.
“Circular Intersections” by guild member, Charles N.

After touring the gallery, we headed to our favorite restaurant and enjoyed seafood on the deck…..

This week I also switched over to my summer decorations……

These pretties were purchased in Australia!!

I had two friends over for lunch one day and Michael and I had another couple over for dinner on Saturday.

BUT….the most enjoyable thing of the week was my cooking segment!! I was looking thru recipes trying to find something new to make and came across a German Chocolate Cake recipe. It looked interesting so I decided to give it a go! It was complicated and dirtied almost every bowl and pot in the house, but the batter was beautiful….

….the icing was fun to make…..

….and the resulting cake was both beautiful AND oh so tasty……

I also spent some time in the studio and will post about that in the next day or so.

On Thursday night we had a gorgeous moon and I will leave you with that…..

On to week two……

Berry Picking……

It has been so nice this Summer to have time to do things that I have wanted to do but just couldn’t get around to.   One of those things is picking berries at some of the local farms.

On Friday, I traveled to Washington Farms to see what was still available.   The farm is a favorite place for many people, .

with Strawberries in April, Blueberries and Blackberries in the Summer, Pumpkins in the Fall, and a Corn Maze as well.

When I arrived just after they opened, I was one of three cars.  I asked about which berries were available and they told me to go to the Blackberries first as they would only bear a few pickings.

I had a wonderful time walking down the rows of beautiful plants and picking the plump, juicy berries…..


I loved the colors of the new berries that were just starting to form.  It didn’t take long to have a full gallon…..


….although I did eat a few along the way.

Next, I moved to the Blueberry bushes…..


Picking was a bit slower here but I once again enjoyed the colors of the ripening fruit…..


The results were wonderful……


The morning was perfect, with clouds overhead and a cool breeze blowing.   I will definitely find time to do this again!!!!

Indian night at the Arnold house…..

Michael and I have found a renewed interest in Indian food for two reasons….. firstly I have a friend in the quilt guild named Nupur (who has a wonderful blog) and we have had her family over for dinner a couple of times and have enjoyed sitting at her table as well!!!    Secondly, we have had it confirmed that we will be visiting India for 5 to 6 weeks in 2015…..four weeks in Bangalore (while Michael works)  and 10-14 days traveling around the Northern parts.

Anyway…..Nupur had given us the name of an Indian market in Atlanta and we decided to drive over for a visit on Monday.   The “Patel Market” was a large store and I have just discovered that it is part of a chain of stores.

We enjoyed just walking thru the market, ogling at all of the food that we didn’t know anything about.   Then we decided to start buying stuff, starting with a series of bottled sauces for main courses and rice.  We also found a bag containing 4 HUGE newly cooked pieces of Naan bread…..


Finally, we found a funky vegetable called “Dudhi”……


The name is what caught our eye first and Michael googled it and found out that it was a gourd similar to a Zucchini squash so we decided to buy one and try it.

Tonight was the night to try the first meal…..

We started with chicken and “Patak’s Simmer Sauce” in a Vindaloo flavor….DSC02448

Michael cooked the chicken and added the sauce to simmer for 15 minutes…..


I spent some time looking up how to cook the Dudhi and found that it is mostly used as a filler in meatless “meat balls” so I wasn’t sure exactly how to cook it as a side.  We finally decided to  slice it, slather it with Olive Oil, Salt and Pepper and put it into a hot oven to roast for about 15 minutes……


The final step was to heat the Naan in a cast iron skillet…..


It was a wonderful meal…..


The Dudhi had a rind on it so we ended up cutting out the centers to eat.   They were very tasty and were an excellent accompaniment to the spicy Vindaloo sauce.

A GREAT first Indian adventure!!!!   And best yet….there are leftovers!!!!