The Taj – photo – Karen Anderson
I’ve been fascinated with India and Indian cooking for a very long time. My mentor Noorbanu Nimji and I published A Spicy Touch – Family Favourites from Noorbanu Nimji’s Kitchen in December of 2015 but we’ve done tours and taught Indian cooking together in Calgary since about 2007. In 2011, because I am also founder and owner of Alberta Food Tours, Inc., I was asked to lead tours to India and have been happily doing so since 2012 thanks to my partnership with Indus Travels.
My 2017 trip has been sold out for some time so I’m happy to announce my plans for India 2018. Click on the link for the full itinerary. The synopsis follows along with some photos from past trips to whet your appetite. Continue reading
Travelling is a great way to Savour it All
Today on Alberta at Noon I talked about a few recipes from my recent trip to Rajasthan, India. You can listen to that broadcast here. I’m on between the 28:10 to 34:10 marks in the show.
In my column today I talked about the colours of Rajasthan. I tried to convey in words on the radio a few of the images that have stuck in mind. I did not end up feeling that my brief words did this justice so I’ve put together a slide show so you can really begin to see why colour is such a phenomenon in this arid North Indian desert state.
Lal Moss and complementary vegetables and chapati
A lovely lunch at Rohet Garh in Rajasthan, India
photo – Karen Anderson
This week on Alberta at Noon I’m going to talk about my most recent culinary expedition to India. In November I took 21 guests to explore the food and culture of the capital region of Delhi and two of India’s Northern States: Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan.
I especially loved Rajasthan which is renowned as the land of colours.
The colours dazzle against the backdrop of landscape’s sandy hues. The tropically hued fuchsia and tangerine saris of the women flow like nectar giving our eyes, like hummingbirds to the flower, a little relief from the neutral tones which though soothing do not tend to be as life-giving. The colours of Rajasthan light up like match tips in the equally bright turbans of the men which change from village to village, occupation to occupation, and perhaps signal that molds that castes were made of are hard to shatter. You see a rainbow of colour in the food markets that materialize on street corners just as the evening meal must be shopped for and of course those were my favourite colours of all: the aubergine and bright green of indigenous eggplants, the scarlet of tomatoes and the muted tones of neatly bundles onions, herbs and India’s own culinary gems; her spices.
The people of Rajasthan truly manifest their culture’s belief that “Guests are Gods”. My business partners at Indus Travels and Hi Tours of India live and breathe this philosophy in every action they take for me and my guests on my annual odyssey to their homeland. They have become my second family and even though we are half a world away for 50 weeks each year I hold them dear and look forward to our yearly fortnight reunion.
This post will share a few of the many recipes that the expert cooks I met in Rajasthan so generously shared with me. I thought they might be just the thing to help us savour it all on cold Canadian January days when we might not otherwise feel quite up to the task.