Our Own “Paarti” on the Porch

So, I’m only slightly embarrassed to admit to my guilty pleasure over the summer.  Anyone who knows about our job situation for the past year or so knows that recently, my dinner companions have been slightly…televised.  So I’ve spent the summer eating dinner with Alton, and Iron Chef (on some of those nights when I couldn’t manage to get to dinner before 9), and Next Food Network Star.  I know, I know.  Reality TV is crap.  But it’s about food–does that redeem it at all?

I especially got drawn in this season because for once, I actually really cared about who won.  And I said that if my pick won, I would totally watch that show.  So it was with happiness and excitement that I settled in today at noon to watch Aarti Sequeira in her new Food Network show!  And I already have plans to make one of her recipes on Tuesday.  And I’ll make the other one in the near future.  I just love her.  She’s cute and upbeat (and has the most darling accent), but most of all, her “culinary point of view” was that she wanted to bring Indian flavors to American dishes and to make Indian cooking more accessible.  Her show blended in some interesting facts about the ingredients and cuisine in well.  I’ll definitely be tuning in again!

So, tonight Chris and I were adventurous and tried one of her dishes from Next Food Network Star, a Braised Lamb with caraway rice.  The link has the recipe, as usual.  It was interesting–I bought all sorts of things at the grocery store that I never had before.  Lamb. Cheesecloth. Stick cinnamon. I made a bouquet garni for the first time.  I now have 8 brand new jars of spices sitting on my shelf, and I don’t think there’s a common Indian spice that I haven’t bought now.  I think I’m ready for whatever she can throw at me.  After making this dish, the kitchen smelled amazing.  it was like being transported to our favorite Indian restaurant.  Awesome.  Sadly, the meat didn’t have as much of that awesome flavor as we would have liked.  Next time, while the rice is cooking, we’re going to put some tomato sauce into the pan with the lamb, add the powered version of some of the spices from the recipe, and let it simmer until the rice is done.  It’ll add a nice sauce and hopefully ramp up the flavor a bit.  I can’t wait to see what she makes next week!  🙂


5 responses

  1. The Next Food Network Star! I watched it all season too! I have to say, my favorite was the Big Chef, but I also thought that Aarti Paarti was very cute. (Glad she changed the name of the show so that Party is spelled less confusingly!) Although I doubt that I will ever cook any of her spicy Indian food, I’m interested to know how her recipes are! Keep the posts coming! 🙂

    • *laughs* I guess that shouldn’t surprise me. You were watched Top Chef, too, didn’t you? I was watching this past season over the summer, but I have a feeling that will end now. It’s funny–I made the same exact comment to Chris about the spelling of the show! I mean, that was the title of her blog and all, but I still am a sucker for proper spellings over the “cutesy” versions. I’ll update you as much as I can on how her food is! 😉 Good to “hear” from you! ❤

      • Yup, I’m all over the Top Chef. It’s not so very different than Food Network Star, so I would highly suggest adding it to the DVR list. 🙂

  2. We faithfully watched the show as well. Happily surprised that Aarti won, the ending was unexpected, but that’s what the network hopes for, isn’t it?
    You know that I am not nearly as adventurous as you and Chris, but she sure has a way of making you want to try her ethenic foods. She is interesting and fun to watch. I’ll be tuning in to see her show!
    Once again, congrats to you and Chris in your foodie kitchen! =)

    • I don’t know that I agree that it was unexpected. I mean, granted, I was biased. But it did seem like the judges liked her pretty consistently, and she provides something that the network doesn’t have yet. But all three finalists did have pretty good reviews of their pilots, so it was a bit suspenseful. I’m sad I’m missing next week’s show–I might have to have Chris tape it! 🙂

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