Approximately Indian

I had a taste for Indian last night, but I live in the sticks, and you just can’t run out for Indian food when you live in the sticks. Unless, of course, you live in the sticks in India. Or maybe England. Not here, anyway.

So I cooked some broccoli and cauliflower and steamed some fish and made this sauce to put over it:


  • butter
  • garam masala powder
  • ground cashews
  • milk
  • tomato paste
  • salt and pepper

Melt butter. Add garam masala and cashews and stir until they smell toasty. Add milk, tomato paste, salt and pepper, and stir until sauce is thick. Takes about 10 minutes from start to finish. Tasty. I wish I had put some chopped raisins in it, too, but I didn’t think of it until just now.

Another good recipe is to put lima beans and LOTS of dill weed into a rice cooker along with jasmine or basmati rice, water, butter and salt.

I’m nearly done with my edits on FORCE OF HABIT. I’ve done three passes, now: rainbow edits, eliminating most of my “had”, “was”, “were” and “that” overuses; this one, responding to my editor’s suggested changes (make almost all of them and some she didn’t suggest) and eliminating most of my remaining overuses; and the third one, changing attributed thoughts to italicized thoughts (instead of “I really don’t want him to knock my face off onto the floor, Bel mused.” changing it to “Bel weighed the consequences. I really don’t want him to knock my face off onto the floor.“) That isn’t an actual line from the book, but it could be. The possibility exists, at one point.

When I finish this pass, I’ll send the ms back to my editor,  and she’ll go over it and catch all the mistakes I made during the rewrites. Then I’ll go over it again, then I’ll submit it, then I’ll get the proofs and go over it AGAIN. Yes, it takes a lot of time, but I’m expecting people to pay money to read my book. They worked hard for that money, and I owe them the respect of working hard to earn it, too.

WRITING PROMPT: Does your main character ever eat in a public food dispensary? If not, why not? If so, what kind?



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Approximately Indian

  1. Holly Jahangiri

    March 12, 2011 at 4:44pm

    Oooh, you like Persian food, too, I see! Baghali Polo… Try this one, too:

    If you’re feeling adventurous, this is a fun way to kill half a lazy Saturday:

    My character doesn’t eat in a public food dispensary because she’s a bit of a germaphobe and the sound of other people chewing and swallowing nauseates her and makes her fantasize about heinous ways to make it stop.

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 12, 2011 at 9:10pm

      Oh, um yum, the lubia polo looks SO GOOD–without the ground beef. The torshi is TOO MUCH TROUBLE. I’d rather just buy baby eggplants and grill them. 🙂 My favorite guilty pleasure (aside from galub jamun) is chello. Totally devoid of nutrition, yet high in calories. What could be better?

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  2. Naxysch

    April 19, 2012 at 1:37pm

    Hi thanks for the recipe! My character loves eating in public food dispensary because she loves taking a dive in other cultures and tries every other cuisine! Oh and gulab jamuns are my favorite too!

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 20, 2012 at 6:40am

      I think your character and I would get along! 🙂

      Somebody brought Ladoo to a party, and now I have to learn how to make them. Mmmmmm!


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