As soon as it starts warming up my mind goes straight to mangoes. They are the king of fruit in my opinion, and they reign over Pakistan all summer.
Chutneys have the power to make or break your food. I don't mind buying ready made chutneys, but there are two that I make the effort to make, especially during Ramadan, because I like my version the best and also because they make me feel a little closer to home! They have such deep and concentrated flavors that a little goes a long way and there's nothing like a well made chutney that instantly transports you back home. Hari Chutney, or mint chutney, is such a classic...
Kaley Chanay (Black Chickpeas) are a family favorite. They have a different flavor compared to chickpeas, more robust and intense, and have more of a bite to them. They're found in spicy and tart chaats, dry roasted and packed into newspaper packs on the streets of Pakistan, and in robust curries, like the one made in my home. They create a gorgeous masala with just onions, no tomatoes or yogurt in sigh. They are naturally gluten free, vegan and rich in nutrients. I love them served over delicious long grain basmati steamed to perfection, but you won't find me refusing to eat them with naan either.
Chicken Jalfrezi is a testament to how one ingredient can transform a dish completely. If you look through the ingredients you can see they consist of ingredients used in any chicken curry. The only difference is a bell pepper, also known as shimla mirch. Such a poetic name, no? This is the story of how one shimla mirch changed everything. Another thing to love is that Jalfrezi is classically cooked with boneless chicken, so it's not just me switching out the bone-in chicken for my convenience. But don't be fooled. This recipe delivers on all fronts. Flavor, texture, and looks, because that fresh pop of green does so much for this dish.