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Messages - romain

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He has been at this for years. You have absolutely no idea how much work this has been. This is a labour of love for him. 11,000 books is a very small number and Jon is right. There's no money in cookbooks at this kind of volume...

Livo - I will let him know. I'm sure he'll be delighted you enjoyed it!

Richard (MR) is a guy like any other. He is my (on-line) friend and I know for a fact he works tirelessly for literally a pittance.

We were chatting before he went live and he was nervous as anyone would be. It took as long as it took and that was his intention. The point here wasn't to demonstrate mastery in a post-produced sort of way. He is being very human and reaching out in a vulnerable way to help people during this time. And people are having fun with it which is something we could all do with these days.

Lets Talk Curry / Re: Base gravy suggestions?
« on: April 18, 2020, 10:03 PM »
I'm firmly in the keep base simple camp. Too assertive a base and I find all the curries tasting more of the base and less of the individual curry. If it tastes like much more than a vaguely curry flavoured onion soup I tend to stay away...

Tandoori and Tikka / Re: Chicken Tikka - better than the BIRs
« on: April 18, 2020, 09:59 PM »
What would your list be today, T63, with the benefit of a further 13 years' experience ?

Can you name a quality Indian cookbook or two?

For me it has to be:

  • 50 Great Curries of India by Camellia Panjabi (even with the errors)
  • Indian Cookery by Madhur Jaffrey
  • Classic Indian Cookery by Julie Sahni
  • A Taste Of Punjab by Lali Nayar
  • Tandoor by Ranjit Rai (especially with the BBQ season upon us)
  • Indian Cookery, A Practical Guide by Dharamjit Singh

(Slightly re-formatted to make it more legible as an embedded quotation).

** Phil.

That is a searching question. Of the books I first named only the Maddhur Jeffrey still gets extensively used. I have my original BBC paperback that is now tattered, torn and stained and that goes into the kitchen with me. A clean copy of the same book resides on the shelf, picked up seemingly unused in an oxfam shop, and I have the large glossy format with pictures released by the BBC a few years back for perusing in an armchair.
Recently I have worked through a lot of Vivek Singhs book as well as some of the more recent authors and my Indian Cookbook collection consists of 130 plus books.

I think that the above list were the special books that I really relied on back in the day but, nowadays, I have certain recipes in a number of cookbooks to fall back on depending on who is around and what is available.

I’m currently experimenting with Rabbit and trying to adapt some of my preferred recipes to suit.


Madhur Jaffrey's Illustrated Indian Cookery from 1982 was one of the very first Indian cookbooks I ever bought. It's still an essential for me. There are so many just fundamentally solid recipes in that book.

It's up there with Julia Childs Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Marcella Hazan's Classic Italian Cooking, Rick Bayless' Mexican Kitchen and yes, dare I say it, the first book Emeril Lagasse ever published (all his subsequent books have been a joke but the first one is absolutely brilliant).

Lets Talk Curry / Re: Naan bread
« on: April 15, 2020, 12:02 PM »
The recipe was a quick rise with a lot of yeast so the flavour was under-developed IMO but I expected that.

Talking of under-developed flavour I made some no-knead  bread yesterday and it was a pretty nice loaf but didn't have the right smell (in spite of the requisite 6-plus hour rise in lieu of kneading, around ten in this particular case). Now the yeast was the instant type and had been in the fridge for well over a year. Worked fine though. I was wondering, do you have to use fresh yeast to get the right loaf smell? Last time I baked with fresh yeast was at school and by God I could have eaten a hundered of those loaves it was that good. Never tasted one better since.

Livo covered this off well so I will just add that I meant that I was dealing with a short ferment based on a lot of commercial yeast and so there was no time to allow complexity of flavour to develop.

Tandoori Dishes / Re: Tandoori Chicken on the Weber
« on: April 07, 2020, 02:08 PM »

Generally i also stack the charcoal both sides, or if i am cooking small items i can shuffle between direct and indirect heat, over the years for me that has proven to be the best way, i so love charcoal :)

I love charcoal too. Haven't has a gas grill in many, many (too many:-) years.

Tandoori Dishes / Re: Tandoori Chicken on the Weber
« on: April 07, 2020, 01:07 AM »
Lol, it was the first time i used it and the drip tray was a tad high, i just had it to hold water, i had the coals to "the side" rather than underneath as i wanted the heat to be offset.

They were lovely :)

I can just imagine. Those chickens look absolutely mouthwatering. I still remember the day I got my rotisserie ring and that is easily 20 years ago. The original motor is still going. It's one of my absolute favourite cooking toys...

I build my fire on either side (I have the charcoal baskets) and place the drip pan in the middle (between the fire - no upper grate installed.

I do that any time I cook indirect (which is most of the time) - rotisserie or not. Keeps the bottom cleaner that way. I just move things over the fire briefly towards the end if I want some char - for tikka as an example.

Looking closer that's not a Weber is it?

Tandoori Dishes / Re: Tandoori Chicken on the Weber
« on: April 06, 2020, 05:28 PM »
Looks delicious.

I'm curious. Your tin pan is off to one side and I see no drippings in the pan. When I set up (same weber kettle with the rotisserie ring) I put the drip pan underneath the chicken. That way I don't get the bitter flavour from the fat vaporizing - just the the kiss of pure, sweet charcoal smoke.

Lets Talk Curry / Re: Naan bread
« on: April 06, 2020, 05:24 PM »
I could have flattened them more as I found them a bit thick. The texture was good though.

The recipe was a quick rise with a lot of yeast so the flavour was under-developed IMO but I expected that. Managed to get some flour finally so I will be working on it now. :smile2:

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