Friday, 27 September 2013

ilona's tea-time koftas

frying the koftas
i have always wanted the recipe for these delicately spiced little koftas. they are a departure from the traditional pakistani ones that are usually simmered in gravy. they are very much my mama’s recipe, partly drawn from a norwegian cookbook as well as being inspired by auntie y’s teatime entertaining who made something similar. i do not remember auntie y’s koftas but have a vivid memory of her person. she had a petite frame and was the essence of femininity and grace. her signature fragrance was motia especially in the long months of summer when she would weave a gajra into her long hair or wear individual jasmine flowers in her ears. perhaps that is unsurprising given that her name is the persian variant from which ‘jasmine’ is derived.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

brown sugar labne with roasted peaches for hello! pakistan

roasted peaches with brown sugar labne
this brown sugar labne with roasted peaches recipe has been a steadfast favourite this summer. it is infinitely adaptable because you can pair it with pretty much any fruit that takes well to roasting. incidentally, the first time i made it was when aunty m and her brother came to thirty-two for dinner. she is the editor-in-chief of hello! pakistan and had been asking and encouraging me to write a recipe for the magazine. the original recipe featured muscovado sugar which was adapted to brown sugar or shakkar. i believe that the charm of a recipe lies in using local ingredients. shakkar is an unrefined sugar made from sugarcane and has a caramel depth like that of muscovado. i grew up eating it rubbed into roti hot from the griddle with plenty of butter. it is also used to make ‘gurr wallay chawal’, a light treacle coloured sweet rice fragranced with cardamom.

i would like to thank the very talented shu han lee author of the beautiful mummy, i can cook food blog for her food-styling and photography and to hello! pakistan for printing the recipe. the recipe is reproduced here with permission from the magazine and appears in the september twenty-fourteen print version.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

tomato ginger jam: the western cousin of tamatar ki chutney

tomato ginger jam
sometimes on weekends baba would make tamatar ki chutney (tomato chutney). he would fry roughly chopped tomatoes in a karahi in a free pour of oil till they reduced to the consistency of a jam. we would eat it straight from the frying pan with its rim of saffron coloured oil, scooping it with tandoori roti that either mama or m would have bought from rana market. baba always garnished it with fine rounds of fresh green chilli. in june last year he made it for us on a hot, sticky sunday. he decorated it with hard boiled eggs, the yolks of which were rimmed light blue as he likes very hard boiled ones, along with the fresh green chillies.