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03 November 2014 @ 07:54 pm
Fifty Weeks, Fifty Curries: Week Eight: Aachar Gosht  
I'm always more favorably inclined to green foods than I should be. I'm not sure why it is. Maybe it's because a lot of my favorite vegetables are green--broccoli, asparagus, spinach, kale, or cucumbers. Maybe it's because I love pesto. Maybe it's because the olive oils that taste the best are the ones that have a deep greenish hue. Or, probably more relevant in this case, maybe it's because I love green Thai curry. That's not really relevant here at all, since with green curry the color comes from the curry paste in the coconut milk, and with aachar gosht it comes from all the cilantro that's been added, but nonetheless that's the first reaction I had: this is going to be great.

Look at that bundle of cilantro. Yum!

And it was. It actually tasted a lot like paneer, and much like with jeera aloo salan I took a single bite and then said to softlykarou, "This tastes like paneer." Saag paneer, specifically. Even though there's no cheese in aachar gosht, there is yogurt and it's not typically one of the spicier curries, according to 50 Great Curries of India. And I'd agree with that--we had some green beans and spicy hummus from Middle Eastern Bakery & Grocery with it and the hummus was spicier than the curry. If it had just been the curry and rice or bread, it would have been pretty mild overall.

It also differs in being stuffed full of beef. I've never heard of beef paneer, but if someone has, please let me know so I can eat all of it.

Cilantro/yogurt mix. I honestly kind of want to just eat it like soup.

Words from the Chef
I've seriously been loving these not 200 ingredients or 200 hour prep time curries. This curry was perfect for coming home on a Monday and wanting to eat dinner somewhat soon. I also tend to be really excited by herb-based curries, something about the freshness of the sauce really makes me smile. I changed some things, we have a bunch of habeneros from my father-in-law so I used those instead of the 6 green chilies asked for. But the heat was nice, a warming spice that went with the more acidic tastes. I loved the spice combination as well and since these are supposed to be pickling spices I will probably explore using fenugreek in my pickles. I'd be perfectly happy to add this to our rotation, possibly with some paneer added in.

It's a good thing I like onions now. All of these would be a lot harder for softlykarou to make if I still hated them.

When softlykarou first told me that this was "lambbeef in pickling spices," I was a bit skeptical, since I wasn't sure how the taste of pickles would mesh with the curry flavor. Of course, I should have remembered that Western-style cucumber pickles aren't the only, or even most common, way of pickling things. Googling up fenugreek as a pickling spice actually turns up these pickled mangos, which sound amazing. Maybe we should be adding some fenugreek to the pickles that softlykarou makes that I have with breakfast? If it makes them taste anything more like this curry, or like the pickles described in that link, I'm all for it.

There's the green color. Not quite as visible because of all the beef that's in there.

I actually think I've said just about everything I want to on this. It was good, but not amazing, and most of my thoughts on it are dominated by the comparison to paneer.

Would I Eat It Again?: I always get saag paneer if it's available whenever I go to an Indian restaurant, if that tells you anything.
Do I Prefer It to the Usual Thai Curry?: No. While I always get saag paneer, it's a side dish. Even though this has beef and not cheese in it, I didn't quite feel like it was a whole meal. Maybe if there was also paneer included like softlykarou suggested.
What Would I Change?: Nothing. This was perfect as is.
Current Mood: fullfull
Current Music: Mysterious Universe podcast