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Easy Dal Recipe

Indian, Recipe By April 21, 2020 Tags: , , , , No Comments

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An Easy Dal Recipe

This easy dal recipe post has been a long time coming. Dal is the comfort food of my people. Growing up in a Bengali household in the Midwest in the 1980s, “Indian food” was seldom something we would go out for. It was the food we ate at home on weeknights and on weekends at friend’s homes. It was a cuisine I took for granted until I went off to college and found myself 2000 miles from my mother’s kitchen.

Now one might think I’m about to share her recipe but truth be told: she was not a great cook. Still, her dal was a favorite of mine and to this day the site of yellow split pea dal sends me back to the days of my youth.

This truly is an easy dal recipe thanks to the time saving hack of reaching for the Instant Pot. It might seem like a lot of effort to reach for two pots, but the final product will make the time spent digging through your cabinets totally worth it.

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Bang for your Bengali Food Buck: Haat Baazar NYC

Indian, New York City By December 7, 2018 Tags: , , , , , , No Comments

The Vitals:
the spot: Haat Bazaar 3711 73rd st suite 73 Jackson Heights Queens NY
the eats: Biriyani, beef curry, dal, dimmer chop(fried egg), bhaji – basically get everything you can but fair warning: the fish has a million bones!!
the bucks: $10 a person
the full nelson: legendary Bengali grocer serving authentic home cooked Bengali food in the heart of Jackson Heights Queens

Beyond Chicken Tikka Masala and Naan lies a complex world of regional Indian cuisines, like Bengali cuisine of which I grew up on. Not unlike some 1st generation American kids, I longed for hamburgers and pizza over funky fish curries and lentil stews but as I grew older and Mom’s kitchen grew further and further away, I reminisce for the OG stuff I grew up on.

Fair warning: Bengali food is not for everybody. The curries come off oily for the uninitiated, the fish is loaded with bones and can be dangerous to eat if you’re not careful, and yeah, the kabobs are cooked to a temperature beyond well done. Still the spice profile is distinctly different from the all you can eat Indian buffets where cumin and coriander are made almost irrelevant by copious amounts of heavy cream. The bottom line is that there is a lot more to Indian food than your neighborhood Indian restaurant, and if you are looking for a true foodie adventure, head to Haat Bazaar in Jackson Heights, Queens.

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