Kitchen Nomad – Pakistan

For the month of September our taste buds travelled to Pakistan! I decided to be brave and attempt all the recipes for one meal on a Friday night. My only dilemma was that we don’t eat meat on Fridays and so my Chicken Yakhni needed to be changed to a either fish or vegetables. I chose prawns and tweeted chef Sumayya Jamil to see what she thought. Her advice was to be gentle with the spices as the prawns wouldn’t take as much as chicken but to give it a go and let her know how I got on!

Here’s what was on the menu:

Starter – Courgette & Aubergine Pakoras
Main – Prawn Yakhni
Accompaniments – Channa Daal, Cucumber & Tomato Raita
Dessert – Carrot, Coconut & Pistachio Halva

I have to admit that I’ve never cooked Pakistani food before, so I was a little worried I’d muck it all up, but sheer determination took over and I got to work. As I was at the office on Friday, I prepped my onions, weighed my spices and made the Halva and Raita on Thursday afternoon, meaning I had much less to do on Friday after work.

I didn’t find any of the dishes too hard to make, my only problem was keeping track of all the spices I was using! The Daal, Halva & Raita were the easiest dishes to prepare, followed by the slightly more difficult Yakhni and finished off with the Pakoras. For me they were the hardest as I hate frying things in oil and it all got a bit smoky!

I served the Pakistani feast to my parents and boyfriend and they all seemed to enjoy it, with the Daal being a particular favourite. We all liked the carrot Halva but agreed it was very rich and you wouldn’t want much more than we had (and I’d halved the recipe!)

Overall I think it was a success and I’m looking forward to bringing out the spices more often in my cooking, and I’m excited to see where Kitchen Nomad will take our taste buds next!

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