Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Indian Dishes

A couple of Indian recipes from Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan...

First is Palak Soyabina Panira. This is a vegan take on the very popular Palak Paneer dish, which is made with spinach and cheese and a blend of spices.

When visiting family in Newfoundland this past summer, my brother-in-law cooked some fantastic Indian meals. He gave me his recipe for Palak Paneer with an option for using tofu instead of cheese. I reformulated his recipe somewhat to include more common forms of spices and simplify the whole process for home cooks. My brother-in-law also did some research to come up with this new name, Palak Soyabina Panira, with Soyabina Panira meaning "cheese of soybean". I love this name, especially because I was going to simply call the recipe "Palak Tofu", but it sounded far too odd!!


Next is a recipe I've posted about before. Here you have Zucchini Tomato Chickpea Curry. Lots of exotic, smoky spices and just a good kick of heat - not too much to mask the incredible aromatics in the dish.

I usually make just one of these two dishes, and then pair them with some whole-wheat naan or roti bread, veggie samosas, and mango chutney. Such bold flavors and a little different taste with each bite, it's hard to stop eating and I always end up stuffing myself silly!

I mightn't be blogging next week, I have the photo shoot for the cover of ED&BV coming up (oooo-weee!), and I have oodles of things to get in order. Will fill you in on the happenings soon!!

20 comments:

Kris said...

You're speaking my language, Dreena, Indian food! Yummy. I love the name, too, soybina is just fun to say!

Good luck with the photo shoot!

Peace, Love and Veganism said...

We had Indian for New Year's! Love the palak dish. I have seen a recipe (Breana Grogan's site I think) for making tofu paneer, but it looks very time consuming. This looks great! Quick question - for anyone, really. How can you be sure that Indian restaurants are serving vegan? I have heard that some use vegan ghee, but when I asked my waiter the last time we ate out, they didn't seem to know, or just nodded their heads. I saw something on Isa's site about vegan ghee - that's what got me thinking!

Melissa West said...

MMMMmmm these look good Dreena. I love the paneer dishes at Indian restaurants. I am a big fan of the matir paneer (the pea dish).

Julie said...

Indian food is my absolute favorite!!

Matt and I have an all vegan Indian food place right near us that is fabulous...I always tell myself I could never make what they do...but, with these recipes I actually might be able to!! YAY!

Good Luck on the photo shoot!

raising_kahne said...

woo-hoo! A photo shoot! That means it's coming closer to getting the book! Im super excited. This all sounds delicious, and a good reminder that I need to start eating different culture-type foods. I cant wait to try these.

Dayle said...

Nice!! Name is pretty cute too, huh? YAY!! Palak Panira for everyone!

Anonymous said...

I love Indian food and am pleased to see that you're incorporating one of my fave dishes in your cookbook.
It's taken me one year but I finally "retired" Vive and am branching out. Right now the Chickpea Mash Stew is cooking on the stove. I substituted zucchini for cauliflower (not one of your fave veggies, I know) and I added a can of white kidney beans to the can of chickpeas. Hopefully the stew will taste alright. It smells good in any case.
On a sad note, our local paper had an article in the food section today about a place in Montreal that's famous for it's foie gras. The paper carried a picture of these poor animals in cages and the byline indicated that they were being "fattened" up before (you fill in the blanks). How sad!
Sweet Pea

Amy O'Neill Houck said...

Oh my, I love palak paneer, I can't wait to try your soyabina panira--it looks fantastic!

bazu said...

One of my major goals is to become adept at cooking Indian food at home. My repertoire is pretty limited right now, I'd love to try your upcoming recipes! Paneer used to be one of my all-time favorite things...

Good luck on your photo shoot- how exciting!

Linda said...

i desperately need to get-to-cookin' more indian. thanks for the motivation!

laura jesser said...

Wow, Indian food in ED&BV??? That's too good to be true--I really can't wait. Indian food is my new true love...

maybepigscanfly said...

Yay- Vegan Indian food. I really only discovered Indian food right when I became vegetarian (about 3 1/2 years ago), and I loved it. But once I went vegan I didn't really get it anymore because I figured most of it was cream and cheese based. I've also never cooked authentic vegan food so I'm super excited about these recipes in particular. Oh and I just love the name! Congrats on the photo shoot- I'm sure getting that done will make you like your close to done.

-Teresa

Michelle.D said...

Great recipes! I have ordered Indian food a few times recently. With all my food allergies, it is about the only take out i can do, so it is a nice treat. But i will love having some recipes to do myself. In terms of whether it is vegan, I asked for each dish about dairy, and they said it was no problem to do them without. Mind you, i was choosing dishes that didn't seem likely to have dairy, it's not like i could have ordered butter chicken! :-)

Carrie™ said...

Mmmmm! I love it! Did I happen to mention that I can't wait for this cookbook. So, you're doing the photo shoot? Excellent. That means we're into the home stretch. Won't be long now.

Vicki said...

I love Indian food & Have fun with the photo-shoot, Dreena! Can't wait to see the fruits of your labor. :o)

Arine said...

This is not about 'Indian Dishes', but just wanted to say that I absolutely love the Moroccan Chickpea Patties from Vive. They are amazing! (My boyfriend -who never really likes vegan patties - said they tasted like sugar, and that's one of the biggest compliments you can get from him...) I really like the Coconut Lime Cookies as well, and the hummus... it's so much better than the hummus I used to make!

And, I finished my first bottle of flax seed oil (in three years of being vegan), thanks to the Balsamic-Garlic Flax Oil and the Omega Ketchup. :-)

The Apple Oat Pancakes were a bit tart/tangy though (you could really taste the baking powder, is tart/tangy the right word?). I made them again with only a teaspoon of baking powder, and I liked those much better. Is it my baking powder, or...?

(And The Everyday Vegan is on it's way, yay!)

Arine (the Dutch one)

Anonymous said...

Awesome! I love Indian Food. Know of any vegan indian cookbooks? I wish you would write one with all mexican and indian foods! (hint, hint)

I posted about my Canellini Bean and Kale adventure last night as well as a tea post.

Miss ya!

HARMONIA

Dreena said...

Thanks for the enthusiastic responses, you guys!!

Peace, love - I think we can only do our best, like with anything being vegan. If we ask the restaurant/servers if a dish is vegan, and specify no butter, cheese, dairy, etc, and if they tell us it is indeed free of dairy (and meat and eggs), then we accept that if we want to eat at a non-veg restaurant. We've been in the same situation - many times - asking for vegan foods and getting an encouraging, but blank type of 'yes'. Then, a veggie pizza comes to our table with cheese.

Hi Sweet Pea! I've been wondering how you're doing, and wanting to congratulate you with new babe... I send my best to you. About that news story - that is disgusting - what is wrong with people? Disturbing enough to read, to think people are doing that to the ducks/geese every day - and then others find that exceptional eating and want to write about it and praise it. Just keep on keeping on, spreading the word and cooking up our good food. Take care. :)

Michelle, when I read your comment all I could think was "I'll have the butter chicken, without the butter - oh, and without the chicken... can you make it with Earth Balance and seitan?" Wouldn't they love that request?!

Arine, thanks for all that terrific feedback! Awesome that you are loving those recipes so much, and gettin' the flax oil into your diet - woohoo! Yes, there are often differences in baking powder, and you did the right thing reducing it to test it out that way. They are probably fluffier with the 1 tbsp of baking powder, but you can easily go to 2 tsp... and if 1 tsp is working for you, then go with that. I've had baking powders that have the taste/texture almost like pure baking soda - so much that I couldn't use them at all in baking. They worked to clean the sink, though! :)

Hey Harmonia! Do you know of Madhur Jaffrey? Her Indian cookbooks are pretty popular, and well respected I believe. You may want to look into some of those. Your soup sounds great - I love kale!

Urban Vegan said...

I can smell the spices from here! I'e also used tofu as panir...and itf you press it enough, you can hardly tell the difference.

Harmonia said...

Thanks for the name drop I will have to look it up!!! :)