LOVE what you cook & Cook what you LOVE!

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This weeks advice to you would be; to LOVE!
Love what you cook, and cook what you love! 
If this is not applied in the kitchen, then it will show in your food. The flavours will not bond and turn into beautiful harmony. 

The way I get into the spirit of cooking is;
1- Find a recipe I  would like to cook.
2- Go shopping and find all the ingredients.
3- Play some music you love listening to help get you in the mood. 
4- Set up the kitchen so everything is at hand.
5- Make sure you have plenty of space to cook.
6- Give yourself TIME, so you’re not rushed.
7- Listen to your instincts.
8- LOVE the recipe your cooking, LOVE the ingredients, LOVE who you’re cooking for, and have fun.

 

Mum of two becomes ‘the best and loyal customer of Priya’s Kitchen!

Picture of Anna Walters   Photo Credit to Jodie Humphries

Priya’s Kitchen was founded in February 2018, and since then regular and new customers come through the door to taste the delicious fresh food that gets cooked and served from Priya’s Kitchen. However, you always have your best customers that can’t live without Priya’s spicy food!! The reason why people come through the door is because it is HOME-COOKED, FRESH, AUTHENTIC and bold with flavours. Some of the other the dishes that are not familiar to the western palette gets cooked in the kitchen, which is not seen in your regular takeout joints or restaurants. These are dishes that have been cooked in traditional Indian homes for centuries.

Throughout the year, I have seen in my books that ‘Anna Walters’ has ordered numerous times, not saying that she isn’t great in her own kitchen because she’s a fantastic cook herself and cooks endlessly for her family. However, Priya’s takeaways are the best way to look after yourself when you have a busy life with the kids!

So, I decided to award and recognise my customer, who LOVES Priya’s Kitchen. And that is ‘the beautiful Anna Walters!’ I wanted to interview her and get to know her better.

 

So here she is; Mrs Anna Walters!

Q: Please introduce yourself;

A: My name is Anna Walters and I live in the St Marks area of Maidenhead. I’m a mum of two and an artist www.annawaltersart.com    

Q: What types of food do you love?

A: I love to eat and like a wide range of foods. Favourites if I had to pick are probably Japanese & Italian.   

Q: Why do you enjoy buying from Priya’s Kitchen? & Why do you like my food?

A: Priya’s food is absolutely delicious. So full of flavour, fresh and so much healthier than any other Indian take-out. It’s become a Friday night treat when I’m tired and bored of cooking for my tribe every other day of the week.       

Q: What is your favourite takeaway from Priya’s Kitchen?

A:  Maharashtra Dumpling Curry in an Onion and coconut sauce.

Q: What’s your favourite food shop?

A: The Italian Shop on Denmark Street in Maidenhead.  

Q: What’s your food tip or hint?

A: I use buckwheat flour in my kid’s pancakes (they have no idea!). We also grow herbs and fruit & veg in the garden which the kids love. They eat cherry tomatoes like sweets when in season.     

Q: Would you recommend any of my services?

A: I can’t recommend Priya’s homemade food enough. The weekly take-out is just so good. The masala paste is also a great way to make-your-own at home. We made boxing day turkey curry with ours which was a massive hit.

 

Anna Walters is a wonderful Artist, she graduated and started her career in advertising, and like many women like myself have now changed their careers to look after their children. However, we all need to work and keep our sanity above board before we literally go stir crazy! So, I would love you to check out Anna’s webpage www.annawaltersart.com  as she has taken on her new profession as an Artist! She works with oil paints and only works on commission and believes that art should be affordable so is very reasonably priced.

 

Here are a few of my favourites!! 

As Anna, has been the best customer, she will be given a free family meal on the house!

 Thank you, Anna, for supporting a small business like myself and for apricating my heritage!

 

 

 

 

Ode to My Father

As I sit here reminiscing about my father, I’m recalling how he was a very loyal, simple, caring man, who had the traits of an ambitious chef in the making. His culinary adventures began back in India, when he had to drop out of school to help support his mother after his father passed away. This woman was my grandma Rukhi, and she showed him the way around a kitchen. Living in a poor town, during a poor time, nothing was wasted in Rukhi’s kitchen; every vegetable and morsel of meat was used.

My father was born in Uganda in 1957, where some of my cooking influences have come from. Like me, my dad used to put his spin on a dish that he had learnt. There was a dish that reminds me of him called Matoke (Plantain Stew) spoken as ‘Ma-tu-ghee’. It was a side dish that would go with his favourite mutton curry, and we would eat it with an Indian salad called ‘kachumber.’ The plantain banana stew is very similar to a tarka dhal, in the way it’s cooked.

However, lots of things have changed, everyone has moved on. My dad has gone to be with his mum and dad, and time has made us evolve, but one thing never changed and that’s our Sunday curry day! Everyone else would have a Sunday roast, but in our family, we had mutton or lamb curry on Sundays. We would drench the plantain stew with lots of lemon and the meat was always cooked on the bone for depth of flavour and it had a hint of smoky spice, with stewed tomatoes and onion running through to give it a rich, robust taste.

 

 

I never really thought my dad and I were much alike until I left home to live a life of my own and I could see that I carried his traits; ambition, the passion for food, and the love for life to be simple and stress free. Now, after his passing I truly believe I am my father’s daughter and I love every trait of his that I find in myself. He is always with me and will always stay with me! His ambition to cook new dishes and experiment will be carried forward with me on my culinary adventures. I spoke to him on his birthday in March, nine days before he died and I could hear the pride in his voice when I told about the way I’m sharing my food of love with you!

So, in honour of my father, I would like to share a recipe that’s close to my heart, my dad’s mutton curry.

Gujarti Mutton Curry Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 tbsp sunflower / olive oil
  • 2 x cinnamon bark
  • 3 x bay leaves
  • 5 x cloves
  • 4-5 x green cardamom pods
  • 1 tbs black pepper corn
  • 2 heaped tsp crushed garlic
  • 2 heaped tsp crushed ginger
  • 1-2 heaped tsp green birds eye chilli
  • 1 tin of chopped tomato
  • 1 kg of lamb/mutton (2 packets of shop brought lamb chunks)
  • 2 big potatoes cut in medium chunks
  • 2 big white onions, blended or very finely chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1-2 tsp ground red chilli
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • Hand full of fresh coriander for garnishing
  • Sprinkle of Garam-masala

Method:

  • In a pan, heat the oil and add the cardamom pods, cinnamon barks, black pepper corn, bay leaves and cloves frying until they pop and become aromatic.
  • Add in the chopped onions, saute until very brown and caramelised (this is essential for depth of flavour).
  • Add in the ginger, garlic and green chilli and saute for a few minutes.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and stir in.
  • Add in the dried spices, turmeric powder, salt, coriander powder, cumin powder and the juice of half a lemon.
  • Stir and let the sauce simmer until the mixture becomes a thick paste.
  • Add in the lamb/mutton, and sear until the meat is sealed.
  • Add enough water to achieve a soupy consistency.
  • After 1 1/2 hours add in the potatoes and let the meat and potatoes cook on a low heat until everything is cooked thoroughly. This usually takes up to 2 1/2hour on a low-medium heat.
  • You may need to add more water as the potato and meat will drink up the water.
  • Just before you serve, sprinkle in the coriander and garam masala and stir.

TIP: You will find the right cuts of meat and mutton at an Indian butcher, like Gordon Stores on Gordon Rd Maidenhead, and sometimes ASDA. Because mutton is taken from an older sheep, it takes longer to cook and become tender, but tastes much better than lamb. Meat on the bone will also add a lot more flavour.