Thursday, April 19, 2007

Why I Missed the Meet-Up

The recent local blogger meet-up sounded like a great opportunity to meet some of the Kansas City bloggers I don't know, and have a beer with those I do know. I was looking forward to it.

From Sunday through Wednesday, though, we had a guest from India living with us. She was here as part of a Rotary exchange program, and, since our children are away at school, we offered a spare bedroom. Because our visitor is a journalist with a huge newspaper in India, I expected that she would like to check out the blogger scene.

Fortunately for us and for Ancillary Adams, she had better plans! Perhaps inspired by the wine poured at Pierpont's elegant bar, she offered to cook for the four of us.

Ancillary Adams' wife spent the afternoon scouring the Indian markets for necessities like ground raw mango powder. The four of us then cooked for around 4 hours, some of us more involved than others, but everyone participating.

She made two naan-like things - one with a potato filling (dipping sauce = yogurt) and one with a cheese filling (dipping sauce a cilantro chutney). Then there was a chicken curry that she was not happy with - but to us was great, rich with layers of spices.

There was a spicy lentil mixture on top of garlicky rice that had been infused with cumin seed.

There was this onion, cilantro, spice mix that was shaped with some flour and deep fried.

There was a sweet with sauteed vermicelli and sweet milk, flavored with cardamom.

The spices she used were soooo good - toasted cardamom seeds, lemons, lots of little chilis, cumin, coriander, garam masala, tumeric, cinnamon, chili powder, toasted coconut . . . It added up into food that was hot but irresistible.

After dinner, she talked to us about Hinduism and led us in a meditation accompanied by incense she brought from India.

I hated to miss out on the blogger meet-up, but it was quite a memorable evening . . .



Blogger Jim said...

There are some experiences in life that make you feel like your world was just improved. Your guest provided just such a moment.

4/19/2007 7:54 AM  
Anonymous mainstream said...

Pls reply on here with recipe for cillantro chutney, and whatever dish had the mango powder, and where you purchaed the mango powder.

If possible include all recipes.

Thank you.

4/19/2007 9:04 AM  
Blogger Xavier Onassis said...

So for that you missed a bunch of computer geeks swilling cheap beer in a river side bar, eating greasy onion rings and arguing about who had the biggest blog?

You shallow bastard.

You really need to re-examine your priorities.

4/19/2007 9:24 PM  
Blogger red101 said...

So why didn't we have the meetup at your place????

4/21/2007 9:55 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Mainstream - my job was mostly to make sure the beer supply didn't get overwhelming, so I don't really have the recipes. She was a seat-of-the-pants cook, anyhow, measuring things by hands-full and instinct.

Most of the ingredients came from the Indian market out at around 103rd and Metcalf, I think. The ground mango was used in a lentil dish - the powder was very tart, and is called "Amchur". I'm eager to experiment with it in stews and stuff, where you might use a little lemon juice to brighten the flavors. I think it would be great to put into a vinagrette (sp?) also.

XO - I assume that the argument was whose blog is second best, after Gonemild, right?

Red101 - you know, we ought to do that! Burgers, brats, and homebrew, sometime this summer!

4/21/2007 5:09 PM  

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