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How to Make a Simple, Easy Indian Curry

Updated on May 22, 2017
tonymead60 profile image

Tony is a curry maniac, and has been cooking them since 1970. He has travelled to India many times in search of recipes.

What Is A Curry?

Curry is a British term for a spicy gravy dating back to Victorian times, although it is sometimes used in India these days.

Although it is sometimes used in India these days, you will very rarely find the dishes we are familiar with available there.

It is really the term used for spices blended to create exotic flavours and intensify the flavours of other foods.

There used to be the myth that the spices were to hide the fact that the meat had gone off. However, it is just the opposite; as far back as Henry VIII, a king that loved his food, the very wealthy flavoured their meals with exotic spices.

Queen Victoria had her own curry chef and loved the flavours of her Empire.

Curries do not have to be very spicy hot to work; they add a wonderful richness to even the simplest of vegetables.and meat.

Full of Flavour.

Here is my recipe for a basic Indian style curry, which is suitable for anyone. Curries don’t have to be very hot, but they should always be full of flavour.

Ingredients

  • Turmeric powder
  • Coriander powder
  • Cumin powder
  • large Red Onion, Chopped fine
  • Ginger
  • Chili powder
  • 4 cloves Garlic
  • Ghee or Oil

Toasted Spices

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Spices toasted and then lightly cooked with Ghee.mixed spices
Source
Spices toasted and then lightly cooked with Ghee.
Spices toasted and then lightly cooked with Ghee.
mixed spices
mixed spices | Source

Instructions

  1. Heat a large pan or deep frying pan and put the onions in.
  2. Don’t add any oil yet, just sweat them a little. When they begin to steam, keep stirring them on a middle heat, as they begin to go a little bit transparent put in your preferred oil, ghee { this is clarified butter, and imparts a wonderful flavour). Let the whole thing gently fry, this will give you a far better flavour [this also applies to gravies too] when they are just turning golden take them off the heat and put aside.
  3. 1 tsp cumin, 2tsp coriander, 1 tsp turmeric, 1tsp Kashmiri chilli powder.
  4. In a small frying pan put the spices spreading them out over the bottom of the pan. Toast with a very gentle heat; as they begin to give off an aroma add two tablespoons of ghee or oil, and then mix with the powder until it forms a paste now also add the garlic and ginger. Be very careful not to have the heat too high. Add water and stir to form a gravy, cook until the oil begins to separate from the rest of the mix.
  5. Now fry and seal your meat, chicken, lamb, beef, or whatever you like.
  6. When you think the meat is sealed, add you onions, and then add these to the spices you have just cooked stirring very well.
  7. Add a few chopped tomatoes or use a tin
  8. Bring it to the boil on a medium heat, then turn the heat down and let it simmer for an hour with a lid on, then fifteen minutes without the lid, but stir well, and obviously don’t let it go dry.

A Detailed Ingredients List

I have a Holy Trinity of ingredients; onions, garlic, ginger. I start every curry and most other cooking with a mixture of these. I use two large onions, red if I have them, four cloves of garlic and about an inch of fresh

I start every curry and most other cooking with a mixture of these. I use two large onions, red if I have them, four cloves of garlic and about an inch of fresh ginger for every pound of meat.

[my mouth’s watering already] I chop one onion very fine, the other slightly courser, also chop the garlic and ginger very fine. Chop them by

Chop one onion very fine, the other slightly courser.

Chop the garlic and ginger very fine. Chop them by hand not in your processor, you can control the chop better that way.

From your local Indian or Asian shop, [where by the way you will find far better fresh food a lot cheaper than the big named supermarkets] you need.

1 tsp cumin, 2tsp coriander, 1 tsp turmeric, 1tsp Kashmiri chili powder. I prefer fresh chili. If you can find Kashmiri chillies or powder then this is not as hot as other chillies, but adds colour to your meal. if you want it to be hotter then add more chili.

Detailed Cooking Instructions

How To Cook

Heat a large pan or deep frying pan and put the onions in; don’t add any oil yet, just sweat them a little.When they begin to steam, keep stirring them on a middle heat, as they begin to go a little bit transparent put in your preferred oil,

When they begin to steam, keep stirring them on a middle heat, as they begin to go a little bit transparent put in your preferred oil, ghee (this is clarified butter, and imparts a wonderful flavour) is the best to use, but grapeseed, olive, or peanut oil is okay too.Let the whole thing gently fry, this will give you a far better flavour [this also applies to gravies too] when they are just turning golden take them off the heat and put aside.

Let the whole thing gently fry, this will give you a far better flavour [this also applies to gravies too] when they are just turning golden take them off the heat and put aside.

In a small frying pan put the spices spreading them out over the bottom of the pan. Toast with a very gentle heat; as they begin to give off an aroma add two tablespoons of ghee or oil, and then mix with the powder until it forms a paste now also add the garlic and ginger. Be very careful not to have the heat too high. I do it this way to make sure they don't burn.Add water and

Add water and stir to form a gravy, cook until the oil begins to separate from the rest of the mix.

Now fry your meat, chicken, lamb, beef, or whatever you like. When you think the meat is sealed, add you onions, and then add these to the spices you have just cooked stirring very well. You can add a few chopped tomatoes or even a tin [don’t spoil it with a cheap tin, there are some good quality tasty tomatoes on the market. Bring it to the boil on a medium heat, then turn the heat down and let it simmer for an hour with a lid on, then fifteen minutes without the lid, but stir well, and obviously don’t let it go dry.

Eat with chapattis, rice or crusty bread. Enjoy!


I hope this will encourage you to experiment with Indian cooking; if you want to know how to make chapattis I have a hub on the subject.

please leave a comment as this is very important.

What to Drink With This Meal

To find the right wine for a curry is not easy. I often have a fruit drink, mango or something a little bit tangy, lemon or grapefruit juice is nice too.

If the curry is hot for you, then why not try a cooling yoghurt drink which will stop the burn for you.

A nice cup of tea with or without milk usually finishes this meal with something sweet fresh mango or even one of the many wonderful Indian sweets.

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Cook Time

Prep time: 35 min
Cook time: 45 min
Ready in: 1 hour 20 min
Yields: This will make enough for four servings

Raita Recipe

A very nice sidedish for all curries is Cucumber Raita.

Chop half a cucumber and squeeze out as much juice as you can.

mix together sugar about 1teaspoon and fresh mint leaves, or bottled if you prefer.

One coffee mug of yogurt, Greek styles is okay and mix with the other ingredients.

fine chop some tomatoes and mix it all together for a delicious addition to your meal.

5 stars from 1 rating of Rate Curry

Comments

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    • Granny's House profile image

      Granny's House 6 years ago from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time

      tony, thank you. I worked with a guy from India and he would bring me curry rice. I loved it. Now thanks to your recipe i can make it.

      voted up and will bookmark,and share

    • tonymead60 profile image
      Author

      Tony Mead 6 years ago from Yorkshire

      Thanks for the comment Granny's House, I will be posting lots of super recipes in the near future.

    • Becky Puetz profile image

      Becky 6 years ago from Oklahoma

      This sounds wonderful. Thanks so much for sharing your recipe and ideas to spice up food. My mouth is watering too :) Can't wait to try this method. Voted up, useful and awesome.

    • tonymead60 profile image
      Author

      Tony Mead 6 years ago from Yorkshire

      Many thanks Becky, I hope you enjoy it, I have other spicy ideas published too.

      cheers Tony

    • Seeker7 profile image

      Helen Murphy Howell 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

      This sounds like a great recipe and not too difficult. Will definitely give this a try as my family all love curry. I agree with you as well about buying from the local Asian shops - their ingredients are much fresher and loads cheeper than the big greedy supermarkets. I also love all the different aromas when you go into the small Asian shops - wonderful.

    • tonymead60 profile image
      Author

      Tony Mead 5 years ago from Yorkshire

      Hi seeker7

      thanks for reply, much appreciated. The produce, onions and such like are less than half the price. Tesco sell three onions all exactly the same size for .95p; i get 12.5 kg of onions for £1.25 locally, admitedly they are all different sizes though. :)

    • profile image

      Derdriu 5 years ago

      Tony, What an appetizing, exquisite, tasty recipe for curry! In particular, I like the versatility in the range of meats -- beef, chicken, lamb -- which work with this curry. Also, I appreciate the explanation about ghee and the inclusion of healthy, tasty ginger and Kashmiri chili powder.

      Respectfully, and with many thanks for sharing, Derdriu

    • tonymead60 profile image
      Author

      Tony Mead 5 years ago from Yorkshire

      Derdriu, if ever I need a pickmeup, then curry is first on the agenda. I use Kashmiri chilli because it is not so hot, and yet deliveres wonderful colour to a meal.

      thank you for all your comments and intererst.

      regards

      Tony

    • TycoonSam profile image

      TycoonSam 4 years ago from Washington, MI

      Thank you for this interesting recipe Tony. I've never tried curry but always wanted to. I think I will try it at an Indian restaurant first so I know it is prepared correctly.

    • tonymead60 profile image
      Author

      Tony Mead 4 years ago from Yorkshire

      Tycoonsam' I can't imagine a world without curry.

      Thank you for your comment and calling by. Curry is great, you must give it a try. Eat it with chapaties, just dip them in and heaven awaits.

      where is Washington MI, is that different from the capitol?

      regards

      Tony

    • profile image

      Derdriu 4 years ago

      Tony, Have "the kids" tried this out? The word "curry" should have their complete, enthusiastic, undivided attention!

      Respectfully, and with many thanks for sharing, Derdriu

      P.S. What do they like for drinks with this?

    • tonymead60 profile image
      Author

      Tony Mead 4 years ago from Yorkshire

      Derdriu

      My kids love this, Jessica [13] is now able to help with rolling out the chapaties, she can get them round too, mine still look like a burst balloon.

      60% of take aways in Britain are curry houses, pushing fish and chips into second place, with Chinese a long way behind and then a mix of other ethnic foods including Italian.

      Even old Queen Vic was partial to a few popadoms and a Madras curry.

      many thanks for your support and visits to my humble sites Oh Celtic Queen of Hubs.

      ttfn yer owd Pud.

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