Week 13: From Curries to Kebabs

As I’ve mentioned before, Chris came to our marriage with a respectable cookbook collection of his own. Probably more respectable than mine, as all of his cookbooks were quite well used, where as mine… well… I don’t think we’ve hit 10% of my collection yet.

This week, Chris decided to make a spicy peanut sauce and chicken satay from Madhur Jaffrey’s book, From Curries to Kebabs: Recipes from the Indian Spice Trail, which excited me, as he’s cooked a bunch of really great stuff from this book previously.

When the pandemic first started, and the grocery stores were bare in NYC, Chris came home with a giant bag of roasted peanuts in their shells. Comfort food. We’ve slowly worked our way through the peanuts, but hadn’t even made it halfway through the bag. But, it proved to be an excellent buy, as Chris used them in the peanut sauce that went along with the chicken.

Chris, Georgia and I spent some time sitting around the table shelling peanuts, as the sauce called for two cups of them. Chris also said that grinding the peanuts was a learning experience, as the book recommended using a spice mill or a coffee grinder to do it. I know some of you may be shocked when I tell you we don’t have a spice mill (mortar and pestle has been fine for me over the years), we do have a coffee grinder and two cuisinarts.

Chris fired up the smaller of the two cuisinarts and ground the nuts a bit, and then switched them over to the coffee grinder for fine grinding. He discovered that he could not put the nuts directly into the coffee grinder the hard way.

After that, it was smooth sailing. I tended the sauce for a bit, while Chris dealt with the skewers. It smelled heavenly. He had marinated the chicken in ginger and lemon the night before, and I really loved the smells of the chicken, as he was threading them onto the skewers.

Also, while Chris was assembling dinner, I made margaritas, which were clearly the most important part of the meal. Fresh lime juice, some lime-infused simple syrup that I made a while ago and kept in the fridge, cointreau, Chamucos tequila (which is fabulous, I can even drink the blanco straight, which is unusual, because normally blanco is too harsh), and ice. I never bother with salting the rims of glasses, I never really liked that.

Anyway, the meal was fantastic, and Chris decided that maybe we’d work in some kebabs from this cookbook into rotation on a regular basis. The kids all liked the chicken, although only one of them tried the sauce. There’s some sauce left, which I’m looking forward to putting on some vegetables. G and I both went back for seconds. The chicken is gone.


One thought on “Week 13: From Curries to Kebabs

  1. Nice to see Chris in the kitchen.  I think it is the old granny ladies who grind the peanuts for the sauce in Asia.  They grind and listen to the gossip and watch the littles and grind… I have tried various peanut sauces over the years and still like House of Thailand best.  I have never made a satisfactory one.  If you have a GNC store handy, they do a super job of grinding peanuts for the peanut butter.

    Do you have a good shrimp recipe?? Saturday is Kevin’s 70th.  I was going to do lobster tails until I found that frozen (all you can get here right now) were going for $10-15  each!!  I got some enormous shrimp which look like baby lobsters.  The best I have found so far is broiled marinated ones.  I have one super conservative eater, Dorrie, and 2 gourmet-type and Susan who swears she does not like garlic but always says something smells good when I cook with it.  I am thinking marinating in garlic and lime and then broiling.  I am not ready to fire up the grill.  I mmight alternate the shrimp with steak on the skeweres. Love Ma


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