Yesterday, my buddy Eve took me out for lunch at the fancy new Indian place in the neighborhood. It was really good. The meal was probably one of the top three Indian meals I have ever eaten, and that includes the lunch made by my Indian friend.
What struck me during my lunch was how so many of the dishes had one flavor when you took a bite of the dish and another layer of flavor as you exhaled. It was like getting two dishes in one.
I thought about that wonderful quality as I put together this week’s Shabbat dinner.
I started my cooking last night with dessert. I made ginger parve ice cream.
Chis is more or less the list of ingredients, candied ginger.
and about a can of water
less than a cup of sugar because the candied ginger is, well candied.
I stewed everything in a pot for a couple of hours. I also added the rind from an orange and some vanilla. I also added some corn starch to the pot to thicken things up and let that come to a boil. I pureed the custard in the food processor and waited until today to put it in the ice cream maker. I may make a chocolate syrup to marble through the ice cream . I think the contrast of flavors , the sharp ginger will pair well with the mellow deep flavored chocolate.
Thinking about yesterday’s lunch I made up a rub for the chicken.
I began with coffee and then pretended to be a Jamaican lady making a spice rub. I put in cumin, ground hot pepper, black pepper, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, ginger, smoked paprika and about a teaspoon of brown sugar.
I rubbed the mixture really well into the chicken, and then set it to cook in the oven.
Then I made hummus, while I pretended that I was and Israeli Savta who was born in Lebanon, or perhaps in Alexandria.
A few hours later I pulled the chicken out of the oven.
The chicken juice has been reduced with some left over coffee ( shades of Southern red gravy).
I don’t know if I will quite achieve that magic of a new flavor on the exhale while people eat this meal, but I think they will be satisfied.