Opening Night: The Cook and The Chef

Kurma's Saffron Halava:

If you missed tonight’s ABC1 TV episode of The Cook and The Chef, dedicated to vegetarian cooking (with a 3-minute section on me), you can see it repeated again next Saturday at 11.30am (provided you live in Australia).

Simon cooked one of my recipes – Saffron, Cardamom, Flaked Almond and Sultana Semolina Halava.

If you want to watch the episode in your own time, especially if you live overseas, you can download the complete episode via WMV, MP4, or Vodcast.

Warm thanks to producer Mark Stanforth and crew, to Simon and to Maggie. I’m very happy with how it all turned out. What did you think?

Posted by Kurma on 4/3/09; 9:18:04 PM


Episode Guide

This Week Simon and Maggie go vegetarian, proving a meat free diet is far from bland and boring. While vegetarianism has always being part of Indian and Asian culture, it didn’t really kick off in the west until the mid nineteenth century, when a meat free diet became more accessible.

Every home cook should have a least a couple of vegetarian recipes up their sleeve and Maggies no exception. One of her favourites is a very tempting ‘Tart tatin’ made from leeks & aubergines, herbs, verjuice and vino cotto, cooked to perfection in a sour cream pastry base.

One of Australia’s greatest exponents of vegetarian cuisine is legendary Hare Krishna Chef, Kurma Dasa. One of the movement’s longest serving Australian devotees, Kurma has been extolling the virtues of a vegetarian lifestyle for over thirty years and has written several classics on vegetarian cookery.

Inspired by meeting Kurma, Simon cooks a traditional Indian Dahl, a delicious spicy soup made from lentils, vegetables, herbs and spices.

Middle Eastern style halva is made from tahina, but just as popular is the Indian version which is usually made from semolina and just happens to be one of Simon’s favourite deserts. Using Kurma’s recipe Simon makes a version using flaked almonds and saffron, simple and quick to make, it’s the ideal accompaniment to any meal.

To wrap up our ‘vego’ feast Maggie makes a delicious semolina Gnocchi with walnut sauce, proving that being a vegetarian doesn’t necessarily mean a lot more work in the kitchen!

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