The writer, Mavis Hyman, was born in Calcutta where her Iraqi-Jewish family has made India home over 200 years ago. Her recipes combine a lot of the traditional Indian cookies, but enhanced mainly with the basic spices of ginger, turmeric, garlic, onions and cilantro. Every now and then you see recipe that calls for cardamon or hot peppers. But rarely did I find any recipe calling for Masala or curries.
So I embarked on preparing a Diwali feast from this cookbook. The feast included:
1. Cabbage Bhaji (the book had recipes for over half a dozen vegetable Bhaji, but I had none of those vegetables, so used cabbage instead).
2. Chicken and (jardin) peas (yes, that is the name of the recipe in the book).
3. Beef Hurikebab (think of it as a beef and potato curry without the sauce).
Some rice, home made Raita, frozen naan and a celebration worthy of the day was underway.
The evening included Indian music and felt even more festive with the sounds of fireworks throughout the neighbourhood.
But one cannot have a Diwali celebration (or any Indian food meal in my world) without my favourite Mango Lassi, which today I made myself and dressed up with rose water a la East is East.
Happy Diwali everyone.