With the hyper-convenience of modern life, many of us settle for the Indian takeout around the corner that pretends to be Punjabi. Enjoying a home cooked Punjabi meal is now a luxury and nearly impossible to find. At The Ghee Spot we’re keeping it simple and traditional-ish. Things I grew up with as a typical Punjabi farm kid, with some fusion recipes on the side.
Until you’ve been to India you can’t quite grasp just how cosmopolitan it really is as a nation, partly because all we see in the states is the “Slumdog” or overly “ethnic” side of it, thanks to people wanting to “experience” the “real” India. The real India is diverse, complex, beautiful, and has evolved over thousands of years, and numerous conquests, foreign and home-grown. With it’s political and social injustices it’s also is a land of immense beauty.
As often as we had lassi with paranthas before an afternoon in the fields, we also went to the gym-khanna and had high tea with scones and fresh jam. We grew up riding tractors, playing polo on thoroughbreds, eating pizza, and drinking G&T’s. The cuisine, culture, and life is so varied based on the region, that it’s always a feast for the senses. The smells of fresh food wafting into the house from the kitchen, the smell of the earth during monsoon season, and the color of a field of mustard flowers, none of that ever gets old. Being Punjabi I’m always biased to thinking it’s the best part of India. We’re known for rich food, great music, and vibrant attire, not to mention, we’re known to be the pretty people. Punjabi culture has permeated throughout India and is now easily seen by the influence it’s had on Indian music, films, and cuisine.
Being raised in Punjab was a blast, at least the way we did it. There was way too much food and drink (alcoholic and otherwise). When we weren’t “sneaking” out of the house on the tractor (yes, in hindsight, we weren’t as clever as we thought we were. If you’ve ever been around a tractor, you know, there is no sneaking nothing.) or making chicken-orange whiskey (that’s a story for another time) we were enjoying fresh fruits, vegetables, milk, butter, and a variety of meats.
Our editorial scope is simple. As people have asked for recipes over the years, I’ve slowly compiled them with detail beyond my standard answer of, “Oh, I don’t know…a handful of this and some of that”. And as my rants have intensified about rarely being able to find actual Punjabi food despite 99% of restaurants claiming to be Punjabi, it was time to add code to web. By contextualizing each post with simple ingredients, explanations, and random musings, we hope to inspire you to create your own unique dishes. While my recipes can incorporate industrial food, I recommend sourcing locally when at all possible. Seasonal produce and free-range meats always yield the best flavor. Most of all, I believe they contribute to a healthier ecosystem and a more connected community.