cook bookin' our way through the NBA
Really happy to have my fellow Indian bro, Amar aka @AllThatAmar, on here today. Amar lives up to the biggest Indian stereotype by being a doctor but is far from a normal F.O.B. (Fresh Off the Boat) Indian. Growing up in Canada and currently living in Detroit, Amar is one of the most hardcore Utah Jazz fans I know; as the editor of the SB Nation Utah Jazz blog SLC Dunk, Amar and his team pump out must read content daily letting us know of all the goings on in Jazzland.
Follow Amar on Twitter.
1. Spiciest thing you ever ate?
Being an Indian dude I have to say that I’ve eaten a lot of spicy food in my life. In some perverse way I’ve actually tried to challenge myself to find increasingly hot things to eat. I’ve gone south of the border, and my toilet paid the price. I’ve tried a lot of Thai, and my bowels have howled. I’ve eaten Vindaloo that went right through. Sadly the absolute spiciest thing I ever ate in my life was at a Chinese Buffet in London, England. I don’t remember the name of the place, it was near a movie theatre. I showed up there and noticed that they had one of those “wanna-be Mongol” type stations where you brought raw food and they’d cook it for you. The tiny man behind the counter gave me a look up and down and said “Indian, huh?” I replied in the affirmative. “You like Spicy-Spicy?” In my smart-ass way I said “yes-yes”. He then pulled an old rusty tin can from under the table and sprinkled the mystery liquid onto my quickly cooking noodles and meat. It looked odd. It looked out of place in a kitchen. It looks more like the type of thing you’d have in your garage after changing your oil. I gladly accepted this new treat and walked back to my table to taste this new experiment.
It tasted … I don’t even remember. It was insane. All I remember was sitting there at my table, alone (the guys I went there with had since left a long time ago), crying. I had like five bites of this stuff. I wanted to eat the rest. I just could not. In all of my adult life this was the only thing I have not been able to finish eating due to it being way too hot for me. It was for the best though, because they needed to get the rest of that ‘sauce’ back to the lab to perfect the next fuel for the Chinese Space Program. I did not just leave defeated that day. I also left a part of my tongue at that Chinese Buffet.
2. Who had the better rec specs: Thurl Bailey or Antoine Carr
This is an easy one — Thrul Bailey stopped wearing them for a while when he was on the Timberwolves — I guess he didn’t want to see how bad they were either. The Original Big Dawg wins this because he eventually moved from “normal” goggles to red tinted, high contrast wrap around Oakley shades. If I could get away with wearing shades at work I’d wear those too.
3. Favorite Jazz fan moment.
Looking in hindsight the favorite moment for me as a Jazz fan happened decades ago when I was a young, innocent fan who just loved the game. I did not have years and years of anguish built up back when I was young, I did not waste years of my life writing recaps for meaningless regular season games against the lottery bound Sacramento Kings. It happened when I had a lot of hope for the future for my team. It most likely is that Karl Malone dunk on Kareem Abdul-Jabbar back in the 1988 NBA Playoffs. The Sky was the limit for the team then, and I had just started following the Jazz. How could a team that took the Showtime Lakers to 7 games in the second round of the playoffs NOT put the pieces together in the future to win a few NBA titles? I kind of knew the Jazz wouldn’t be able to beat the Chicago Bulls. I knew that the D-Will/Boozer Jazz couldn’t even get by the Lakers. The happiest moment had to be back when I didn’t know my team’s limitations. It had to be that dunk — the microcosm to the macrocosm of all a young fan’s hopes and dreams. Cramming it on Kareem.
4. Better hot dog: American Coney Island or Lafayette Coney Island
This is a toughie. Here in the 313 shots are fired if you rep the wrong dog in the wrong area. A quick look at google maps shows us that. While I’m usually up at the wrongest times of the night, I still pick Lafayette over American Coney. If I’m going to eat something bad for me, I want to eat something so bad for me that I don’t wanna be right. At American you get something very good, but then again, you can get something very good at any number of late night diners in the Motor City. I’m a big fan of onion (I know, people love to kiss me), and at Lafayette when you ask for “lots of onions” you get a lot of onion. Leave it to the Indian dude in me to make a decision about which place for meat I like better by which place gives you more vegetables.
5. Favorite “All That” cast member.
I did not even know that this show existed until two weeks ago. I didn’t get Nickelodeon growing up, and I think I was a little out of the age group to enjoy this show. Wiki tells me that season one was in 1994-1995. I was already writing basketball previews for my high school back then, and in a thrash metal band too. So, yeah, not really an “All That” expert. Going through the very detailed list of cast members on Wiki, though, I’ve selected Alisa Reyes as my favorite member. Why? Because she’s listed as having Dominican, Irish, Italian, and Caribbean Indian heritage. I always rep the diaspora. Even to a fault.
Amar’s Recipe: The Fires of Mount Zatal
I’m going to release my “Top Secret” dish to you all. It’s something I stumbled into back in medical school that I called “The Fires of Mount Zatal.”
1 can of black beans
1 can of kidney beans
½ can of tomato paste
2 medium tomatoes, diced
1 large red onion, diced
3 bell peppers, cut into chunks (precision not important here)
5 habanero chillies, diced
5 fresh jalapeno chillies, diced
1 Bhoot Jolokia chillie, cut in half
2 tbsp of coarse black pepper
2 tbsp of store brand garlic salt
4 tea spoons of ground cumin
3 tea spoons of whole cumin
2 tea spoons of mustard seeds
4 lb of anaconda meat, though you can substitute alligator or beef or chicken or whatever, like you’re the one eating this. I know I always have enough anaconda meat in my freeze though. But I’m not judging you here. Man.
Shredded cheese (as much as you want)
Corn chips (garnish), three handfuls, crushed
1. Sautee the peppers, onions, and tomatoes on medium heat in a pan, you can use some oil here or pam or whatever. Stir every 20 seconds so all things are cooked evenly. Do this for 3 minutes.
2. In a big pot start cooking the two cans of beans and the tomato paste on a medium heat, cover, and let it cook for 3 minutes, stirring once or twice. After three minutes add in the spices to this base, and stir every 45 seconds or so.
3. If you opt to just use minced beef, or three chicken breasts instead of the exotic danger meats then you have your pick here. You can quickly broil or fry the minced meat, or grill the chicken breast. If it’s chicken feel free to cut up the breast so it cooks faster.
4. Add the veggies to the bean pot and reduce the heat and let it cook covered.
5. Make sure the meat is thoroughly cooked (in whatever form it is in) before putting it in the base pot.
6. When everything is together cook covered for 5 minutes (it’ll congeal, which is normal)
7. Serve with cheese and crushed corn chips on top.
8. Add salt to taste, but I don’t for this recipe
9. You’ll find out why it’s called the Fires of Mount Zatal once going in, and at least once coming out again.
10. This recipe has NOTHING to do with the fact that @AllThatPreeti (Ed note: His wife) is a gastroenterologist. It just happens to be that she is.