Can I please just say that I am obsessed with Indian food?! I had one of the BEST meals of my life last night! We didn’t end up going to the restaurant that you all say the menu for—we decided it was too expensive and we opted instead for a “hole in the wall” that got 5 star reviews across the board. The restaurant is called Woodlands, and it is a 100% vegetarian Indian restaurant! How cool!I was pretty much in heaven!
We started off by ordering some Aloo Paratha (basically hot bread stuffed with potatoes) for the table. Oh.my.god—this stuff was absolutely amazing and addicting. I had a slice before my meal came and two more slices at 10:00 at school! (we brought the leftovers with us and put it in the fridge)!!!! We also ordered the Assorted Appetizers and I got to try a bit of samosa, which was amazing. I tried not to eat too much before my meal so I just picked at this and that. The samosa was my favorite!
For my meal, I ordered Baigan Bartha—eggplant mashed with onions and tomatoes and cooked with Indian spices. This was fantastic. I would have never known it was eggplant because it was just so smooth and creamy. I ate it over some of the white rice (not pictured) that it was served with and savored every bite.
In the end I totally stuffed myself—past the feeling of being full…I ate most of mine, that bread, rice, some appetizers and tried some of everyone else’s meal. It’s just so hard when its all so good! I got on my roommate’s scale this morning and saw that I had gained three pounds (which I’m sure is just me being bloated and it will level out soon….haha). Maybe snacking on that potato quesadilla thing wasn’t such a good idea at 10:00 at night…and chocolate chips from school. Anyways, I got up this morning and ran for 40 minutes then ate a good breakfast of Optimum Power cereal. I was going to bring leftovers from last night to work for lunch, but honestly, I ate so much of everything last night that I need a little break. I packed a hummus wrap with spinach and cucumbers, a pear and all natural peanut butter filled pretzels for a snack later.
Last night I started baking my chocolate-lavender cake! Everything was going really well until I tried to get the cake out of the cake pan. Half of it stuck in!!!!!! I thought I could redeem it when I cut it into layers but ended up getting really frustrated and smashing the whole cake with my fist then throwing it in the trash. Then, I took a deep breath, and started completely over–baking a whole new cake. I had the time and this was turned out better, with no cracks. I made my lavender icing, my chocolate buttercream and my lavender simple syrup and tonight I will assemble it all and get graded!
SaraMay 16, 2008 at 12:48 pm
I’m not sure if you saw my question from the other day…I live in Orlando and I was wondering what farmers markets you went to? I only know about the one in winter park on sat and the one in lake mary on sundays. Please let me know, I would love to be able to go to one during the week. Glad to hear you enjoyed Indian food, I’m going to have to check Woodlands out.
RominaMay 16, 2008 at 12:51 pm
All that indian food looks delicious! I love how veg friendly it all is. =)
jennaMay 16, 2008 at 12:51 pm
I actually answered that question on the previous post’s comments 🙂 I went to a farmer’s market in Kissimmee that is every thursday morning. I wrote you some directions to it under your original question on yesterday mornings post so check there—you need to go, its great and cheap!
NJMay 16, 2008 at 12:53 pm
Can’t wait to see that cake. I wish I could bake like that (I am a total amateur) because then I could sell those bad boys for $$ and get out of this office! Your career path is pretty cool. Oh, and your self-restraint, too. I could never work around sweets of any kind for a living as I would weigh 300lbs plus, easily.
NJMay 16, 2008 at 12:54 pm
In addition… Woodlands is my fave for Indian too. You should also check out Spice Cafe at Dr. Phillips Marketplace. It is up there as well, and I do lots of take-out from there.
CassieMay 16, 2008 at 1:13 pm
You look so cute in that pic! I have never had Indian food before but your pics are making me want to seek some out- esp those bread potato things- they look amazing!
Sorry about your cake, i am sure it will be great this time around! Can’t wait to see the final product.
MollyMay 16, 2008 at 1:19 pm
Jenna, Nicole R., and anyone else who does yoga.
I went to a yoga class the other day (hot) and sweated buckets. The guy next to me got some sweat on my mat (disgusting….eww, I was so grossed out!). Anyway, it made me realize yoga mats are quite dirty. How are you supposed to clean them?
Similarly, my wrists hurt a lot from yoga, from all the downdogs, etc. Any tips? Are their special props for your wrists?
That food looks delicious!
lindsMay 16, 2008 at 1:29 pm
haha it looks like you had a fight with the cake in your pic there 🙂
jennaMay 16, 2008 at 1:32 pm
yes, I always win the award for being the messiest in class! haha!
VTgirlMay 16, 2008 at 1:34 pm
i’m so glad you described the indian food dishes…i have always wanted to try indian food but i never know what anything means!! its so confusing! thanks for saying exactley what some of the dishes were!!!
RhodeygirlMay 16, 2008 at 1:37 pm
you make me want to cut my hair short again! your short hair looks so pretty on you! love it!
anything lavender flavored is delicious to me! I went to a restaurant in SoHo with my cousin last year and we had lavender ice cream + rose flavored crepes filled with jam… I still have dreams about it!
blueberrybabeMay 16, 2008 at 1:39 pm
hey everyone! i just wanted to say hi bc i haven’t posted in way too long! i miss chatting with everyone here so hopefully i can step my game up!
jenna congrats on all your hard work and success at school! you are doing an awesome there and on the blog!!! thanks 🙂
molly- i try not to think about the yoga mats! they are most likely pretty gross… but if it really bothers you i would just suggest buying your own bc they aren’t too expensive.
KellyMay 16, 2008 at 1:48 pm
Yum. Your choices for Indian food look SO good. The Aloo Paratha looks especially good. I’ll have to look for it on the menu the next time my bf and I are out for Indian. That’s very fun that it’s 100% vegetarian and it looks like they have a buffet too so you could try lots of things at lunchtime without having to worry your selection will be limited by meat dishes. Good luck decorating the cake.
beckyMay 16, 2008 at 1:48 pm
Shared yoga mats gross me out! They are cheap to buy – I got mine at Target. In the hot yoga classes I’ve taken people also put towels on top of their maps (although this might be to not slip and fall!). The studio also offers some spray which I use even though the only sweat on my mat is mine.
beckyMay 16, 2008 at 1:48 pm
ps – Jenna, can’t wait to see that cake! it sounds yummy!
JessMay 16, 2008 at 2:09 pm
Where did you get the all natural peanut butter pretzels?? I’m allergic to high fructose corn syrup (a blessing in disguise!!) and I can’t find them without HFCS anywhere and I love them!
VeggieGirlMay 16, 2008 at 2:13 pm
Oh wow, that Baigan Bartha looks INCREDIBLE!! Glad you enjoyed it :0)
Love the shot of you at school! Good luck with the cake tonight!!
healthyceliacMay 16, 2008 at 2:14 pm
That is a fantastic picture! You are much cleaner than I would be in a baking class 🙂
I’m glad that you enjoyed your Indian dinner. Indian food is absolutely wonderful, in my opinion, and you did a great job describing it. You made me wish that I had some Baigan Bartha packed for lunch!
Dinah SoarMay 16, 2008 at 2:37 pm
I love, love, love Indian food…so much so that I’ve learned to cook it from an Indian neighbor. We have a Woodlands here in middle TN and I go often…it is wonderful. At lunch they have a buffet which is awesome.
A tip…most Indian restaurants have on the menu a “thali” which comes vegetarian or non. It is a sampler type meal—usually on a large stainless steel platter with dividers and several small stainless bowls. Generally it will have naan, rice, dal, poppadom, a curry dish, another veg dish or two, chutneys, raita, maybe a petite samosa or two…for around $12….so…if you’re craving several things this is always a good choice when there is no buffet.
Sitar is an Indian chain restaurant that has some good offerings too, although Woodlands is my favorite chain.
A really good website if you’re interested in Indian cooking is Show Me the Curry at http://www.showmethecurry.com…..it has good instructional videos.
HeatherMay 16, 2008 at 3:18 pm
Glad you liked the Indian food! That eggplant dish looks fantastic. Yum.
Cute pic in your chef gear! I start culinary school in a month and that photo makes me even more excited. Good luck with the cake today 🙂
Molly- I know I’ve seen deodorizing sprays for yoga mats that you can buy, and here’s a link for how to make your own from tea tree oil:
KristieMay 16, 2008 at 3:24 pm
Wow, that Indian food all looks and sounds amazing. I’m going to make sure that someday in the near future and get out and get myself to an Indian restauarant. I really want to try that Aloo Paratha, mmm.
Can’t wait to see that lavendar cake of yours once it’s all finished up!
TinaMay 16, 2008 at 3:31 pm
I LOVE Indian too! What a find with Woodlands!
nicole r.May 16, 2008 at 3:31 pm
Definitely invest in a mat! They can be pretty cheap and it’s a wise purchase since yoga mats ARE gross. If you don’t want to buy one, I’d recommend buying some method cleaning wipes (like the clorox ones but they’re more gentle than clorox and don’t have bleach) and packing them in your bag to wipe down the mat before you use it. Alternatively you could get some tea tree oil spray.
For your wrists, you can do dolphin instead of down dog. Its the same pose, except you put your entire forearm on the mat extended out in front of you. For a visual, check out the pose index on yogajournal.com. For other sensitive poses, like plank, you can also work on your forearms instead of your hands, and another option is to make fists and work off that but I find this kiind of painful. Always aim to really spread through your palms and fingers so you can focus on distributing weight evenly throughout your hands. Your hands have a nice wide surface giving them a larger surface area across which weight may be distributed. This in contrast to the tiny cylinders that are your wrists. Hope that helps!
BethTMay 16, 2008 at 3:44 pm
If you liked the samosa, try the Samosa Stuffed Potatoes in Veganomicon. Trust me – it does not disappoint!
mollsMay 16, 2008 at 4:15 pm
Jess- I’ve seen those pretzels at Central Market, but I feel like they might be at Whole Foods too if you don’t have a CM. They’re yummy.
Anyone know what the green spots are on the Aloo Paratha? They look kinda trippy. I like it.
SerenaMay 16, 2008 at 4:22 pm
Jess, I’ve bought those pretzels at WF – they’re pretty good (not too salty, which is nice).
SDFMay 16, 2008 at 4:29 pm
Yummy-lavender! My birthday cake was a lavender infused raspberry vanilla cake-and it was possibly the greatest thing I’ve ever had in my entire life! Mix chocolate in with that and I can’t even imagine! You’re so talented!
BetsyMay 16, 2008 at 4:32 pm
hole in the wall indian places are always the best. i LOVE veggie samosas too. so amazing.
i cannot wait to see your final cake!
NadiaMay 16, 2008 at 4:40 pm
mmm that eggplant looks SO good. dont worry about the weight gain…obv. bloat. indian food always gets me super bloated. It’s all the fiber and sodium. Glad u enjoyed ur meal. Btw i love how u said the paratha was like a potato quesadilla. Now I know how to explain it – I always just said it was fried bread with some sort of filling. lol
Becca AMay 16, 2008 at 4:49 pm
Your dinner looks great! I can’t wait to see the final product of your cake!
MollyMay 16, 2008 at 4:53 pm
I am sorry I guess I should have been more clear, I own my own yoga mat………but I still would like to clean it.
Thanks for the advice.
MollyMay 16, 2008 at 4:57 pm
Oh and nicole, thanks for the wrists advice.
You mentioned that method does not have bleach…..what is so bad with bleach. I keep reading to avoid it, but noone ever says why? Thanks again!
DanielleMay 16, 2008 at 5:10 pm
I have the same problem with Indian food, it’s almost too damn good ;). Jenna, I wanted to tell you that I added you to my new blogroll. Hope that’s okay!
natalieMay 16, 2008 at 5:56 pm
Jenna you sound just like me. Whenever I bake a cake it comes out perfect out of the oven but then I find some way to destroy it haha
I really wanna buy those peanut butter pretzels to 🙂
nicole r.May 16, 2008 at 7:14 pm
nothing is wrong with bleach. i love bleach. i clorox my bathroom about 15 times a day haha. i just wouldn’t use it on my yoga mat because it’s super caustic and i would be afraid the rubber would disintegrate.
Eat, Live, Run » Blog Archive » What’s Cooking TonightMay 19, 2010 at 2:46 pm
[…] we are going to make one of my favorites, channa masala. I LOVE Indian food. I had it for the first time when I was in culinary school, living in Orlando, and I’ve been rather obsessed ever since. […]