Wednesday, November 10, 2010

An Indian Inspired Fireside Tablescape

Komali Nunna from Entertaining From An Ethnic Indian Kitchen wrote a book by the same name. I was quite honored when she contacted me and asked if I would feature her book on Vignette Design.
Entertaining From An Ethnic Indian Kitchen is more than a cookbook. Komali has elevated entertaining to an art form, as seen by the beautiful photographs. It really deserves to be showcased on the coffee table!

I was inspired by the many menus and tablescapes she features in her book, particularly her fireside dinner. She says, "I like to set a low table in front of the fireplace and use oversized cushions for people to sit on the floor around the table. Sitting on the cushions at a low table invites intimate conversation."

So, inspired by Komali's table, I set out to create an Indian inspired fireside tablescape.
Remembering my collection of wool Kashmir shawls, I used them to set the tone for my table.

Japanese maple leaves and hydrangeas freshly cut from the garden form the centerpiece, along with mercury glass votives and aged brass candlesticks.

I layered a paisley pillow over a velvet one for the floor cushions.

The dishes are from our wedding. I layered silver over brass for the chargers. The silver napkin rings are made in India, as are the candlesticks and centerpiece container.

The silver wine goblets are from my husband's family. They have been passed down from one generation to another.
The copper jesveh is from Armenia. It is used to make Armenian coffee, served in the tiny demitasse cups, a gift from my mother-in-law upon our engagement.

Sitting here, browsing through Komali's book, I noticed some similarities between Indian and Armenian food, and even fabrics. I'm wondering if it is the Persian influence on both cultures.

We both love lamb shish kebob and rice. Flat breads called roti are similar to the Armenian lavash. And of course pickled vegetables are a mainstay in both cultures. Komali tells about how making pickles and chutneys from every possible vegetable was part of her mother's repertoire. My husband's grandmother did the same thing. Armenians call it Tourshi!
In fact, that's what our daughter Ashley named her catering company!

Indian cuisine also features pomegranates, and so do Armenians. I'm so excited about this recipe for Brine Roast Turkey with Pomegranate Glaze.
We are definitely making this for Thanksgiving. I have been searching for this recipe forever, and now here it is!

Doesn't this look delicious!? Like I said, this book is brilliantly photographed.

I learned so much from Komali Nunna. Not only does she give practical entertaining tips, she also provides insights into the Indian people, their languages, festivals, history and geographical influences on the different regions and cuisines of India.

This may very well be my favorite tablescape to date! Seeing the opulent and elegant tablescapes in Komali's book really inspired me to try to do the same. I had fun gathering the ingredients together and look forward to recreating this tablesetting on a grander scale in the dining room someday.

Be sure to visit Komali Nunna's website here, where you can order a copy of
Entertaining From An Ethnic Indian Kitchen for yourself or as a gift.
Komali also has a blog here. She is a regular participant of Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch.
I'll be joining Susan for Tablescape Thursday too this week, and also Jain at Food For Thought, where books are reviewed in the kitchen!
On Friday, I'm joining Michael at Designs by Gollum for Foodie Friday.

Oh, and guess what!?
While I was photographing my tablescape this morning, my Kitchenaid arrived from Designs by Gollum! That's right, I won the Kitchenaid giveaway!
Thank you Michael! I can't wait to use it for the first time. Perfect timing for the holidays.
I may have to fight Ashley for it. Her catering business is starting to take off. Check out her new blog here!
Sorry Ash, that's my Kitchenaid!

I'll be back later to light the fire.....


I'm back! It's now dark and the fire is lit!

Ready for a fireside dinner for two.

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Kim said...

Wow. What a stunning tablescape Delores. So warm and inviting. You've captured the essence of the book perfectly.

Lizabeth said...

This is just beautiful! You have all the elements and the warm colors make it all so inviting! Your home is so lovely! The food in the book does look really good!

Bonnie Bee said...

Delores...gorgeous...elegant..fabulouson ALL levels... and I too have a *jesveh* that was my grandmother's.
I love cultures that cherish the simple things in life- family,friends,& food. Your table reflects all of these.. WONDERFUL blog!

Blondie's Journal said...

Just beautiful, Delores. Your home is the perfect backdrop for this dinner. You did a wonderful job and the book looks fabulous!


Kathy said...

I would love to be a guest at this table -it is lovely

NanaDiana said...

Oh Delores-That is absolutely, breathtakingly beautiful. Can I come for dinner? I promise to behave myself (well,as good as I can be that is). It is lovely! Hugs-Diana

Pam - @diy Design Fanatic said...

Delores, your tablescape is so beautiful and romantic! Looks wonderful!!! I am so happy for you about you winning the Kitchenaid! Congratulations!!!

Marigene said...

What a beautiful, warm, welcoming table you have set, Delores. Love the unusual combination of hydrangea and Japanese maple for your centerpiece.

Glenda/MidSouth said...

Congratulations on winning the Kitchen Aid!! Glad to hear your daughter's catering business is doing well.
Enjoy your evening.

Marlis said...

This is truly beautiful. Thanks for the inspiring lok into both cultures. Your table is magnificent. I love the colors. I love how you layerd the silver and brass.

Scribbler said...

This is so beautiful and inviting! Now you have made me want that book!

Mariette VandenMunckhof-Vedder said...

Dearest Delores,

What a most interesting blog! So many favorites, beginning with the Indian food, the Kashmir paisley shawl and pillow. Oh my, so glad to see them in this blog. My husband did bring Kashmir shawls back for me, when he went on his trip to Kashmir for the Dutch Government. For years I've imported Kashmir art till they had some uproar and things didn't work out as smooth.
You both can be very proud of your ethnic background as well. Certainly there are many cultural similarities. Persia did rule at the times of the Taj Mahal. Glad we got to see that too in the ten years we worked in India for Pond's.
Thanks again for sharing this!

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

Hi Delores, Beautiful table and shawl! Congrats on your win.
Hugs, Sherry said...

Exquisite -- both your review of the book and accompanying table, as well as the pictures from the book itself. I'm only sad that I can't just sit and enjoy that table by the fire. I can't tell you how glad I am to have found your blog!

Komali Nunna said...

I had tears in my eyes when I saw this post. I love it. Thank you so much.

Lynn said...

This is just amazing, absolutely beautiful!

Jacqueline said...

I adore setting up a table in front of the fireplace. This is just lovely and the colors are so rich. I really like the candlesticks. Everything just glows. Your home is just inviting.

How fun to see your new Kitchenaid arrive. Have fun with that you lucky winner! said...

PS I just added you to by blog roll. I hope it inspires someone to visit :)

Gerry said...

Simply breathtaking !!!

Donna@Conghaile Cottage said...

"Beautiful, Warm & OH SO Cozy"! The colors are also perfect for the season. "Lucky You with your new Kitchen Aid, Congratulations"!!! I'm printing out your turkey recipe(thank you SO much), it sounds SO good...
Hugs, Donna

Sarah said...

Delores, this is a gorgeous setting. You've captured the feel of an Indian fireside tablescape without question. The textiles are stunning and the perfect backdrop for your wedding china. ~ Sarah

Sharing with Sherri said...

What a cozy, romantic, and GORGEOUS tablesetting Delores! Love the rich paisley prints and the glow of the candles and fire are so warm and inviting!

The turkey recipe looks soooo delicious it's making my mouth water! I'd love to have Thanksgiving dinner at your house!!

Congratulations also on that wonderful prize you won, that should be a big help for all the delicious baking I'll bet you'll be doing for the holidays!

Warm wishes!

Kathy Walker said...

Gorgeous! And...the die for!

a quiet life said...

aren't you the lucky gal, cookbook and mixer! great news your daughter is doing so well too, and OF COUSE your room looks stunning :)

love your guest curled up so cozy too~ mine would have eaten the sofa...

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Gorgeous setting, Delores.

Unknown said...

Very beautiful!! How romantic!

The Charm of Home said...

You did a wonderful job with this table. It is gorgeous and your home just makes it perfect. Wonderful to visit. Thanks for showing us.

BonjourRomance said...

What a gorgeous table - very romantic in front of the fire.

Kathy said...

This is stunning...and you get to use your beautiful Christmas room too. Thank you for such a great world history lesson. Did the hubby like sitting on the floor?

Barbara said...

What a rich and luxurious setting! Everything looks wonderful. I am afraid that once that fire was lit, I would curl up on one of those cozy cushions and go right to sleep. Lovely!

Bill said...

Hi Delores,

Your interpretation of an Indian fireside dinner is absolutely stunning! I love the rich colors and gorgeous textiles you're used. Your thoughts on the influence of Persian culture on Armenia and India are fascinating. I want to try some of Komali's recipes too. They sound (and look!) wonderful, don't they?

Congratulations on your win! I used my KitchenAid tonight to knead bread -- so much easier and clean up is a breeze (always start on the lowest speed though!).

Warmest regards,

The Tablescaper said...

Such a beautiful cozy tablescape. How welcoming.

- The Tablescaper

Red Couch Recipes said...

What a warm and decadent tablescape fireside. It is just beautiful. Joni

xinex said...

Your tablescape is so exotic and so cozy, Delores...Christine

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hi Delores...

I have been to Komali Nunna's blog several times...she is such a talented and inspiring lady! Her book looks fabulous! My friend, you have set the most beautiful floor-side table...I love it! Ohh...just wished you could have heard all of my oohs and aahs as I looked through all of your lovely photos! Delores, I adore your wedding's such a beautiful pattern and it sets such a fabulous table! I love how you used a bronze and silver chargers...I love the mix of colored metals! Your centerpiece...fabulous! I also really enjoyed your beautiful Kashmir scarves...ohhhh!!! Thank you so much for sharing your lovely table with was breathtaking!

Congrats on winning Michael's gift giveaway! That's awesome!!!

Warmest autumn wishes,
Chari @Happy To Design

pamela marie said...

Stunning, yet cozy! What a glamorous and fun way to dine. Def doing.

Johanna Gehrlein said...

Whow, Delores, what a great tablescape. I am a follower of Komalis Blog and I always enjoy her posts. Her tasteful and colorful decorations are always an eye-candy and her recipes are yummy and very healthy, too. Her posts are a glimpse to the Indian culture and she has so many different themes to show. I can imagine, how wondeful the book is. And you did a great job, inspirated by Komali. I think, you are really right that the Persian of the classical world influated many cultures. And I love all those wonderfull patterns and styles.
Greetings, Johanna

Chubby Chieque said...

Hi Delores!

Your settings today is unbeatable. I love it to death.

You have so much to share to your readers for a great inspiration.

TY for sharing.

Happy TS…

Greeting from a freezing Stockholm.

Sonny G said...

I agree with another poster..

La Dolfina said...

Your inspiration led you to create an unbelievable vignette!!!
It's so opulent yet so warm and inviting... I didn't want to leave this post. I hope you and your hubby ate there that night. Completely romantic and perfect for your Armenian roots. YOur paisley shawls are gorgeous. The author couldn't have picked a more perfect person to review her book!!!
Absolutely Stunning my friend and so well written.
Many xo's to you,

Alycia Nichols said...

What a beautiful setting! Your table covering and pillows are fabulous, I LOVE your wedding china, and those napkins...those NAPKINS!!! Exquisite!!!

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

STUNNING! The entire room is just perfect, a beautiful extension of the table. Now I'm craving Indian food.

Entertaining Women said...

I wonder if there can be such a thing as a friendly stalker...I can see you getting up one morning and finding me asleep on those cushions in front of that glorious fireplace. I love every moment and detail of this post. I might even check into the cookbook, although I've never had a very adventurous palate...maybe it's time to turn over a new leaf...pun intended! Thank you for sharing your beautiful design. Cherry Kay

Mary said...

Love this cozy setting you've created! I would love sit on those cushions, curl up by the fire & peruse the pages of that cookbook :-)

Patricia @ ButterYum said...

I love your home, love your photos, love your blog... love, love, love.

Brined turkey is a favorite in this house. The pomegranate glaze sounds like a fabulous addition! Mmmm... I can smell it now.


Miss Char said...

Your table is is warm and inviting, I'd love to sit a spell and discuss tablescapes. You have a great eye for putting things together. Thanks for sharing.

Rattlebridge Farm said...

Glad it arrived! Your photos and your home are beautiful!

Kathysue said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Low Tide High Style said...

I can see why this would be a favorite tablescape, it's absolutely beautiful!

And congratulations on your new'll love it!

Kat :)

Randi said...

Enchanting and delicious!! Just returned from the upholster, Delores, who made fringed pillows to compliment an unfringed sofa. She informed me another client saw the pillows, cancelled her intended redo and went with a velvet with fringe sofa. You've got company!!

Kellie Collis said...

It's a gorgeous table setup! Wow! Enjoy the beautiful weekend, Kellie xx

Bargain Decorating with Laurie said...

Delores, this is an incredible post! The table on the floor, by the fire, the beautiful china and chargers, the table topper and flower pillows -- all of it looks gorgeous. The book looks gorgeous too. From what I can see, you have captured the essence of the book beautifully. laurie

Nellie's Cozy Place said...

Your fireside table for two is simply delightful and beautiful.
It looks so warm, inviting and intimate and relaxing!!
You did an outstanding job on this table, it makes me want to linger here and just savor it awhile.
I am sure it made for a wonderful dinner.
Certainly enjoyed my visit!!
Blessings, Nellie

Donna D said...

Amazingly beautiful! Love it!



Wow Delores! I love it that you fixed it in the living room in front of the fire, sooo very romantic! I love your cashmere throws, the over sized cushions on the floor, everything is perfect, the colour of the atmosphere with the lighting is so warm and cosy. I love the stock of chargers, it's great!
Come visit my blog, I've put some new stuff, although I broke my camera on my last trip, we went on a cruise around the south of America, just came back 2 weeks ago. Keep posting hon.


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