Ramblin' Recs


House of India

827 Main St
Schererville, IN 46375


This is the first in a series we call … Buy It. Make It. Love It. This series proves that if you know where to look, the region has the options to help you cook like a pro.

Buy It.

House of India on Main Street in Schererville is a wonderful little ma and pa shop that carries all the essentials for creating a wonderful Indian meal. Though the store is not very big, it is packed full of goodies. A husband-and-wife team owns and runs the cafe and store. The couple are very friendly and extremely helpful in picking out just what you need and can offer tips and suggestions as well. If you’re not in the mood to cook, there’s a wide selection of frozen foods, and they offer a selection of southern Indian vegetarian dishes in their cafe. The wife does the majority of cooking for the cafe, although the husband boasted about his chicken biryani. It’s only offered on Saturdays, and I’m dying to try it. I have had the paneer dishes and think they’re fantastic. I found everything to be very reasonably priced. Be sure to grab a couple of samosas on your way out. That delicious little snack has quite a following: The store has orders that come in from NYC!

Make It.

Mulligatawny Soup
1/4 cup ghee (clarified butter) or vegetable oil
3 cup onion, chopped, medium diced
1 each Indian green chile, chopped, fine (alternative: serrano)
5 cloves garlic, chopped, fine
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 1/2 Tbsp garam masala (buy premix or mix your own!)
                1 Tbsp cardamom
                1 2-inch cinnamon stick (1 tsp ground cinnamon)
                1 tsp cumin
                1 tsp whole clove
                3/4 tsp black peppercorn
                1/4 tsp whole nutmeg
Mix whole spices in a spice grinder or coffee grinder or mix preground spices in a mortar and pestle.
1 1/2 tsp coriander
1 1/2 tsp turmeric
1Tbsp tamarind concentrate (alternative: 2-3 prunes)
1/2 tsp cayenne powder
2 cups Masoor dhul (red lentils, dry)
8 cups vegetable stock (alternative: chicken stock)
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 cups basmati rice
Salt and pepper to taste
Garnish: lemon wedges and cilantro

1.        Heat the ghee.
2.        Add onions. Cook until brown, about 15 minutes.
3.        Add garlic, chile and ginger. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
4.        Add garam masala, coriander, turmeric, tamarind and cayenne. Cook for 1 minute.
5.        Add lentils. Stir until coated.
6.        Add broth. Bring to boil
7.        Reduce heat. Cook for 20 minutes.
8.        Puree soup in processor or blender. Be careful not to overfill. This can be done in batches.
9.        Stir in coconut milk and lemon juice.
10.     Salt and pepper to taste.
11.     Pour over rice. Garnish with lightly chopped cilantro and lemon wedge.

Love It.