where to buy indian spices

CLE Living: Gatherings Kitchen

There comes a point in your life where the line between friends and family starts to blur. And what better way to demonstrate your love for your family of friends than a home-cooked meal? You know what's even better? A home-cooked meal where neither you nor your friends have to clean up! Recently, my good friend and fellow blogger Charity organized a super fun evening where a group of friends gathered to take a private cooking event at Gatherings Kitchen

I've never done a group cooking class-- in fact, for me, cooking is a solo sport. So this was definitely a new adventure. Gatherings does not serve alcohol, but guests are welcome to bring their own, so armed with a bottle of prosecco (duh!) and a bottle of wine, Nick and I made our way over to Lakewood to cook. We had a group of about 12 people (the private cooking events have a max capacity of 16), and together we set out to cook an Indian menu of samosas and pakoras, lentil soup, Indian bread called khulcha, a lamb dish, a entree of chicken and vegetables, and Indian rice pudding for dessert. Gatherings advertises the event as four courses, but as you can see, we made a LOT of food!

Everyone paired off to work on different portions of our meal, but no one seemed particularly interested in making the chicken korma, so being Indian, and as previously mentioned, a solo cook, I decided to tackle this head on. Now if all of this sounds intimidating, it really isn't. Everything is perfectly portioned out, most of it is prepped, and there are 3 chefs on hand to help out. So at no point do you feel like you're on a sinking ship with no lifeboat. And you know what? It was SO MUCH FUN! We were all drinking wine and prepping food and having conversations, and along the way, I even learned a new way to chop onions! 

We cooked until we had our appetizers ready, and then it was time to leave it up to the professionals to finish off our dishes, and plate them, while we sat down for more alcohol, conversation, and table service. 

I have to say, everything was DELICIOUS!! The quantity of food was ridiculous, so most of us went home with leftovers (which were equally delicious heated up!), AND a cookbook to recreate the recipes at home!!!

One quick tip on cooking Indian food: I highly recommend finding a neighborhood Indian store (just google Indian grocery or Indian store) where you can buy spices for a really low price. They store for up to 2 years in airtight containers or you can freeze them. If you don't have one close, and/or you have Amazon Prime, you can also order kits like this one or this one

Overall, a fun, educational, and delicious way to spend an evening with friends or family or friends who have become family! Find Gatherings Kitchen here or on Facebook. The Supper Clubs (where you participate in a pre-scheduled class) as well as the private cooking events are $75/person!