Last month, I heard about crafts and cocktail party from my totally-hipster friend, Jak; and I’ve wanted to throw one since. What happened last weekend was even better (than throwing the party) – I got invited to one!
My pièce de résistance was “Stuffed Naan”. Recipe (waaaay) below.
Here are some pictures from that day, along with my recipe, which was a result of scavenging roughly 28 websites and 16 videos. I looked at so many that they all blended together, but this one from Food.com is a good start (to improvise and make your own).
Side note # 1: I tend to over research when it comes to recipes, and ultimately end up substituting with whatever; kinda spur of the moment. It’s usually a result of a glass of wine. I’m one of those people who glosses over recipe books before bed, but can’t follow a recipe to save my life.
And since I took small portions of my Indian spices to my friend’s place, they didn’t have labels. I thought it wouldn’t be a problem, because “I’m Indian, and can totally tell them apart by smell”. FALSE. “not after 2 champagnes, I can’t!”. SO, after a while, I just threw throw spices in, but it turned out okay, and (if I may say so myself) the end result was spectacular.
Side note # 2: my mantras when cooking:
- Get someone to do the chopping. Bribe if you must.
- Cook less. Season more.
- Taste often (please don’t go licking raw meat because “Roo said to!).
- Recipes are guidelines!! – only ever loosely follow them. Unless baking, in which case, follow them diligently. Baking is a science, cooking is art (- unknown).
- Have fun. Always!! If you’re not having a good time, leave the kitchen, or any room you’re in, or stop doing whatever you’re doing. – – Take a hike!! No, I mean literally, get out.. 🙂
Anyway, Cocktail was Peach Mimosa (recipe: bubbles + peach juice. Simple!), thanks to my beautiful friend, Jen; who is such a talented writer, it makes me sick! I love her, but she makes me utterly sick .. and green with envy.
The amazingly creative Jen (below) with her “multi-piece” piece. Okay, I just want to say piece one more time. Piece!
Angie (below) with her Dropbox ‘wood burning’ piece. This girl has some serious artistic talent!! She also makes me completely sick. 🙂
…we laughed a lot. This was us, pretty much the entire afternoon and evening.
…played a lot! (We decided to paint each other with flour – as one is expected to, when working with flour!!)
…cooked a lot.
Sidenote # 3: (below) peeling ginger with a spoon = WAY more efficient. Seriously, trust me. Try it for your self.
Sidenote # 4: my nail art (below) is Sally Hansen Salon Art. LOVE this stuff. It’s as easy as peel and paste. No dry time, and super duper cool designs.
…and ate a lot. And I mean a LOT.
And a fun evening was had by all… 🙂
Recipe (Makes 8 Naans):
Level: Medium to Easy (the only tricky part is naan assembly)
Total time: 2 hrs (including 1 hr dough rise time)
Ingredients for Naan:
- 6 cups plain flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- 4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 4 teaspoons sugar
- 1 cup lukewarm milk
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus a little extra (for the bowl)
- 1 cup greek yoghurt, lightly beaten(I like full fat; always)
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
Ingredients for stuffing:
- 1.5 pounds minced lamb or paneer
- 5 tablespoons oil
- 2 cups onion, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 inch piece ginger, minced
- 4 green chilies, finely chopped (or to taste)
- 3 tablespoons tomato puree
- 2 teaspoon chili powder (or to taste; optional)
- 4 teaspoon coriander powder
- 3 teaspoon garam masala powder
- 3 teaspoons cumin powder
- ¾-1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
- 6 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
- Ghee/ clarified butter (optional)
To make naan dough:
- Stir in milk and sugar.Gently stir in yeast. Let is sit till mixture gets good any bubbly, approximately 10 mins.
- Sift the flour, salt, baking powder. Add oil, yoghurt, beaten egg in a bowl, and pour in yeast-milk mixture, and mix it all together to form a ball of dough.
- Knead it for about 10 minutes.
- Line a bowl (and dough ball) with oil, cover in cling wrap, and set aside till dough doubles in size (approximately 1 hour on a warm day). I like to keep mine in a turned OFF oven.
- While waiting for dough to rise, prepare stuffing (below).
To make naan stuffing:
- Heat oil in a pan (medium-high heat), fry the onion till golden brown. Add ginger and garlic and stir for a minute or two.
- Add the minced lamb/ paneer, chopped chillies, all spices and salt and stir fry till nicely browned.
- Add in tomato puree, and let the mixture cook thoroughly, stirring occasionally, till all the liquid have evaporated. This is important for the sanctity of the nan!! I kid you not. This is important!!!
- Cool completely, then mix in the chopped coriander leaves.
- Preheat frying pan.
- Punch down the dough and knead it again and divide into 10 equal balls.
- Flatten the ball using your hands (or rolling pin), roll it out slightly and then place about ½ cup of the mince stuffing in the centre and pull the edges up, seal and shape into a ball again. I like to use the same amount of stuffing as the size of the dough ball.
- Roll out the stuffed naan. Trick is to keep the ‘folded or sealed’ side down, and keep your work surface lightly dusted with flour.
- Place naan on pan, and brown on one side, before flipping over
- For you lazy people, not serving naans immediately, keep them warm in the oven (on lowest setting) – I like to place naans on the stove top for 60 seconds on high heat, so you’re not serving a soggy naan (oven can do that sometimes).
- Coat surface with clarified butter, just before serving.
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