Occasionally, a group of our close friends gets together for an "International Potluck". It works like this: the current host picks a country and each guest brings a dish based on its cuisine. It was finally my turn, and I chose the delightful, aromatic and even magical cuisine of India.
We usually just send out an e-mail letting all know when, where and what each person will bring. Because I really like every aspect of home entertaining, I decided I needed to go all out with a themed invite as well. I used the free font "samarkan" and a henna-inspired print for the electronic invitations.
I layered Indian-inspired curtains, table runners, sarongs, scarves and shawls I already had at home on the table to serve as "tablecloths".
The stainless steel hammered dish/bowl on top of each gold charger plate is called a kadhai or karahi. It is actually a cooking vessel traditionally used in Indian and Pakistani cuisine and looks like a rounded bottom wok. I found these at World Market, and thought they'd look great as "plates" at the table.
Indian breads - chapati, naan, papadumPier 1 went really well with the theme creating a warm atmosphere.
bindis and temporary "henna" tattoos to be worn during dinner, and sent them home with packets of soothing incense.
I turned my living room into a "lounging area" where guests could chat and sip their mango lassis.
I gathered several different candle holders, and arranged them on an antique tray.
Organic Chai and Chai Rooibos teas to accompany the sweets after dinner.
saffron, cardamom & pistachio kulfi
(recipe from Epicurious)
1 1/2 C. 1% Milk
1 1/2 C. Half & Half
4 whole Cardamom pods
A few Saffron Threads
5 TBS. Sugar
1/8 C. Chopped Pistachios
Pour the Milk and Half & Half into your pan and add the Cardamom pods. Heat on medium-low. Once the milk is warm, take 2 TBS. of milk and soak the saffron for a few minutes, then pour the saffron infused milk back into the pan. Stir the liquid often while it all cooks down to 1 C (1/3 of the liquid). Then strain out the cardamom pods, add the sugar and pistachios and cook for a few more minutes. Pour into molds and freeze until solid.
Para uma versão em português da festa, clique aqui.