Curry Starter Bottle
Curry Starter Bottle
Curry blends are a British invention, a way to replicate the flavors of India at home. In most Indian households, you won’t find a specific curry blend. Instead you’ll find whole spices, ground spices, and a few masalas that are combined with aromatics to create the complex layers of flavor in Indian food. The types of spices can change from state to state, even family to family.
Nowadays, many Indian cooks refer to a dish as a curry as a category of food the same way as a soup or salad. It usually means it is a dish that has a spiced gravy with it. It can be vegetarian, with meat or fish, tomato based, yogurt based or finished with coconut milk.
Our curry starter is based on the one of the dishes my mom would make growing up that she generically called curry. We provide the spices and, you just add the fresh ingredients. As you can see in the recipe below, this is just a starting point. You can create variations of the dish and play with it to make it your own.
1 medium red onion
2-3 chilis like cayenne
3-4 cloves of garlic
1 inch piece of ginger
1 lb chicken, boneless, skinless thighs, cut into 1 in cubes
1 cup crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce
Options - Frozen Spinach, Broth, Coconut Milk, Cilantro
Olive Oil, Salt to Taste
Using a small food processor or chopper, blend onion, chilis, garlic, and ginger into a chunky paste. Set aside.
Heat a pan over medium heat and add 2 tbls olive oil to pan.
Add the top layer of the kit - the Cumin seeds.
When the cumin starts to sizzle, add the onion paste and 1/4 tsp of salt. Cook until the onions are soft.
Add chicken and cook until white.
Add the crushed tomatoes. For a variation, add 1 cup of frozen spinach.
Thin out the curry with water or broth if too thick, especially if adding spinach. Add salt to taste (~1 tsp). Let cook for 5 minutes.
Add the rest of the spices from the kit, stir well, and let simmer on low until chicken is cooked through.
You can finish the dish with a drizzle of coconut milk and serve with fresh cilantro sprinkled top.
* You can substitute chicken for other proteins or finish with poaching eggs in the curry or adding hard boiled eggs. For a vegetarian version, try adding cremini mushrooms or chickpeas after the onion mix has cooked.