My favorite restaurant in Baltimore–actually my favorite restaurant ever–isCafe Spice in Towson, north of B’more. It is an Indian restaurant, and the best food I have eaten in my life! My friends Jacob and Stephanie took us there last summer, and we have gone a few times since then. They have a dish called Mughlai, which the owner recommended because Stephanie really likes tikka masala. It is sooooo tasty, and I wanted to try re-creating it at home. I found this recipe online, which is very good but not the same as Cafe Spice. I modified the recipe by adding brown sugar, and fresh chopped cilantro right at the end but it isn’t as good. I found an amazing recipe book called 660 Curries, which has at least two recipes that look similar to Cafe Spice’s mughlai, so I’m going to give those a try too.
I have been reading a fascinating book called Curry: A Tale of Cooks and Conquerers by Lizzie Collingham. It is an account of the history of Indian food, and shows how each common Indian dish is a result of invasions by, or trade with, other groups of people. The Vindaloo chapter is about the Portugese influence in India, and the Biryani chapter is about the Mughals. They are the ones for whom the mughlai sauce is named, so I was very interested to read this chapter. The Mughals came from Persia, and ruled India from around 1550 until they lost power in the mid-19th century. Because they were the royalty of India, their food is very rich and contains a lot of spices. Collingham’s book is history interspersed with recipes.
I think this is going to be the summer of Indian food!