As Stefan and I perused our first-ever ethnic market a couple weekends ago (I know, sad), we had in mind very specific recipes from The Indian Slow Cooker in mind. I can't remember if I saw this cookbook on a blog, on Amazon under my recommendations, or at the library. Where ever it was, I remembered to write it down and add it to my holds at the library (or pick it up? who knows) and I looked it over for a first glance at what I could make my family without being too...um...dissimilar? We love Indian food, but I have only had it a handful of times, and had certainly never cooked it myself before. I thought adding ingredients to the crock pot would be a perfect mix for my and my husband's palate and easy enough for me to not screw it up.
Take that back.
Yeah, the first recipe I did screw up, and it wasn't for ease of recipe instruction. It was simply because I'm an idiot at times. It was a basic yellow lentil dish and I added 4 cups of water too many. Yeah. I did. I was using my large (4 C.) measuring cup, and had it in my mind that somehow 12 cups of water equals 4 full measuring cup fulls...can someone explain how I overlooked and put in 16? Well...when I did it, I looked at it, cocked my head funny and thought, "that looks like quite a bit of water!"
Four hours later and it was still...4 cups too many. It became a soup. Over rice. Well, at least the flavor was decent, if extremely bland (again, the water. Gah!)
Next try: I had everything on hand for the recipe shown in the picture (actual picture from the book, not my photo) and that's pretty much exactly what it turned out like. Perfect over a plate of rice but holy crap it was hot! As in, not much flavor other than: HOT. Stefan who loves to sweat while eating Mexican food, could only eat half a bowl of this. I smirked and finished my bowl and then downed probably 16 ounces of water. There's still some in the fridge, and I'm wondering if it could melt the snow outside.
So first...bland (my fault), second...HOT but little flavor otherwise (well, it was cauliflower mixed with potato so that shouldn't be a shock). Thankfully The Indian Store was very inexpensive as we had to procure quite a bit of spices, and 5 were used in this dish. Along with 3 Serrano chilies. The recipe called for 2-3, but I didn't realize that Serrano are actually hotter than jalapeno. I think if I would have cut it back to 1, this dish would have been perfect and our children would have eaten it. It certainly is healthy and frugal, and makes a large amount for little effort.
My opinion? I'm going back for round 2. I haven't decided whether I like the flavors I've had, because 50% of them I screwed up. I'll let you know how the rest goes, and actually write out the recipe I try before I have to give the book back. Hmph.
Do you like Indian food? Any good recipes (for the crock pot or not) that you care to share? Please spare me the eggplant...