Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Indian-Themed Dinner Party

This past weekend I had friends over for dinner and made a dish I've been dying to make since I first made it last fall: Isa Chandra's Cashew Vegetable Korma. Decadently rich and creamy and bursting with authentic Indian-food flavor, this is probably my all-time favorite Indian dish.

Unfortunately, it's also crazy time-intensive to make, so I wanted to wait until I had dinner guests to make it worth my while. The process begins by soaking cashews (I soaked mine overnight) and then pureeing them with vegetable broth to make a cashew cream. Then you cut up and boil potatoes, carrots, and cauliflower.Next you make a curry by sauteeing onion, garlic, and ginger in a bunch of Indian spices. You add coconut milk, the cashew cream, and vegetable broth to it to create the rich, creamy sauce. You saute red onion, and then add the caramelized onion, boiled veggies, and some frozen peas, and combine. I served it over brown basmati rice. AMAZING! The recipe is online here. It took me about three hours total to make, and due to poor planning, I didn't have time to make my appetizer, which was going to be this Indian-spiced Black-Eyed Pea Dip I made before and liked. Instead, I had to serve frozen (gasp!) lentil samosas I'd bought at an Indian grocery. Ugh. Still, they were pretty good.My friend Maya brought onion-stuffed roti that was delicious and just perfect with the korma. Here's how she made it: "It was basically 4 c. ww flour and 1 2/3 c. water mixed in the cuisinart or by hand until a ball forms (will be slightly sticky) you may have to add a little water or flour to get the right consistency. Then let rest for about 1 hour. Divide into 16 balls and roll into 6 inch rounds. I layered the rounds with the onions in between and rerolled to stick." She also brought apple chutney she made from apples from her backyard she preserved last year. It was great!

Dessert was--what else?!--cupcakes, as always from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. I made Cookies & Cream.....mmmmm! These were one of my favorite from the book.


  1. The korma sounds delicious! I love themed meals like that. Bummer about not being able to make the appetizer but I totally understand the time crunch of a dinner party. It's rough and even simpler meals take up a lot of your time. I bet a chai spiced cupcake would have gone nicely with the theme but who am I to argue with any cupcakes at all!

  2. Your food looks fantastic! I love Indian food.

    I had no idea that Oreo cookies were vegan... How did you make the frosting look so creamy?

  3. ZOMG! amazing looking indian food!

    i'm with jenn...are oreos vegan? they most certainly use refined sugar (bone char)....

  4. According to PETA, Oreo's are vegan (click under snacks): http://www.peta.org/living/vegetarian-living/accidentally-vegan.aspx

    However, I didn't use Oreo's! I used Newman-O's because they don't have partially hydrogenated oils or trans-fatty acids http://www.newmansownorganics.com/food_newman-os.html#

    The frosting is from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World and is extremely fluffy but full of very bad fattening things including Earth Balance margarine & shortening. They are NOT healthy!

  5. Cupcakes are not suppose to be healthy.

    I'm not a vegan... but I was a vegetarian for about 15 years. I always believed the urban legend that the creamy centers were made out of lard. Glad to know that one is not true.

    I'll have to check out the PETA snack section. Thanks for the link!

  6. Man those cupcakes look good! Iknow what cupcakes I'm making next. :o)