Pakistani food is really good so I thought to give you a few notes on some of the food. (this post is dedicated to CM). In Balakot we had a cook that would fix Pakistani food. Here is the menu:

InternetCafeMenu of the Balakot tent

One of my favorites is Daal Masoor. As near as I can figure, this means “Split Red Lentil” (sorry CM, I miss translated it last night). Here is the recipe that we ate:
Ingredients

  • 1 medium Onion
  • 1/4 cup Oil
  • 4-5 Medium Tomatoes
  • 1/2 tablespoon Salt
  • 1 tablespoon Garam Masala (‘Hot Spices”, MIGHT be able to substitute curry powder)
  • 1 cup Split Red Lentils
  • 1 cup Water

In medium saucepan, chop the onion and brown in the oil. Remove the skins from the tomatoes and cut into pieces, adding into the browned onion. While stirring, saute until mush. Add salt and garam masala and saute for another 10 minutes or so. Finally add split red Lentils and water. Simmer until lentils are well cooked and the Daal Masoor is a thick sauce. Serve with rice or flat bread such as roti or naan. If serving with the bread, to further the experience, serve in bowls without silverware. Serves 4.

Another of my favorites is Chicken Qorma (mild curry).
Ingredients

  • 3 medium Onions
  • 1/4 cup Oil
  • 6 medium Tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons Masala Qorma (“meat fry spice”)
  • 1/2 small Chicken (cut into parts)
  • ~1 cup water

In medium sauce pan slice and saute onions until browned. Peel and slice tomatoes adding to browned onions and saute until mush. Add masala qorma and cook on low for 10 minute, stirring occasionally. Add chicken pieces. Mix and cook until chicken absorbs most of the spice (if sticks to bottom add a little water). Add ~1 cup water and let cook until chicken is done. Serve with rice or flat bread such as roti or naan. If serving with the bread, to further the experience, serve in bowls without silverware. Serves 4.

Much of the food was like this. One of the most common meals was a beef and vegetable stew with spices eaten with roti and if we ate with roti, we would not use any silverware but would tear off pieces of roti and use that to scoop up the food and eat it. With practice you can keep your fingers very clean.

Of course we would always have chai (tea). Often one is asked to come over and have “Chai” and in many instances this will progress to a “light” snack and eventually to a full meal. Chai is very simple to make. Traditionally it is usually 1/4 teaspoon of green tea in a tea cup with hot water and ~1/8 cup of milk. Usually you get a choice of adding your own sugar but two – three teaspoons is the norm. Another beverage is water. But be sure, if you are in Pakistan to get bottled water or purify your own (or you will pay). You will also not get any alcoholic beverages because of Muslim law.

Hope that you enjoy.

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