Saturday, June 16, 2007

Back to School

One of the perks of being an editor with a cooking background is that I get to do cool food things—like attend a cooking school at the beautiful Berkeley home of Ruta Kahate, author of new Indian cookbook 5 Spices, 50 Dishes. After drinking a little bubbly and enjoying some Indian apps (such as crispy okra raita and thalipeeth flatbread), we sat down for a little show and tell led by Ruta. Then it was on to the main attraction: breaking up into pairs and attempting one of her simple dishes. My partner and I chose the eggplant with a sesame-peanut masala. Here's the blow-by-blow of how the little aubergines got stuffed:

The mise en place (meaning: everything in its place) was already prepped for us. All we had to do was a little cutting, chopping and grinding.

... and stuffing. Looks like Little Shop of Horrors, right?

Now into a hot skillet with hot oil.

Ruta takes charge.

After the frying, then 20-30 minutes of braising and voila! the finished product.

It was a feast to be remembered, and super easy to prepare. Time for a dinner party, Indian-style.

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