Although most of my followers are culinary professionals, there is also a large segment of followers who are just starting to enjoy cooking on a slightly higher than basic level. I have therefore decided to publish, under the moniker “Easy Does It“, from time to time some very basic recipe variations of dishes which otherwise might seem complicated to some folks. I will break them down to the easiest, most simple instructions, so that those of you who are intimidated by elaborate recipes will be able to prepare these dishes properly, adjusted to your taste and liking, right from the get-go.
There is a great mystery and misconception surrounding a “proper” Indian, Thai, Malay or Indonesian curry. We are to believe that it is too complicated to be attempted by a less than perfect cook, that you will need 101 ingredients, that the ingredients are hard to find, etc, etc.
Now, while a proper curry can be all that and more, “Easy Does It ” is here to help you find a solution to the difficulties of preparing good food.
I am a huge fan of proper Indian and asian Cooking, curries in particular. I have lived in and visited all of the above mentioned countries (and many more) and although I have learned a lot about the local cuisines, I have never become an expert in any one of them. For my private enjoyment I have rather searched and mostly found preparations which will closely resemble some of my favorite exotic dishes but which I can easily prepare at home without getting a shopping cart full of unusual, expensive and hard to find ingredients every time a new craving hits me. Also, please bear in mind that many of the followers of ChefsOpinion live in remote places and also, not everybody has the means to spend large sums of money on a single meal, yet yearns to taste specialty dishes from around the world.
Here now is a curry sauce which I truly believe will give you that “authentic” taste of India if you add a bit of love and passion while you cook it 🙂
( I have learned a very similar recipe from one of my sous chefs, Said, at his home while I was living and working in Karachi, Pakistan.
The most important ingredient is your garam masala. Please take the time and effort to make it fresh just before you start cooking. It will be so much superior to the store-bought variety that you will probably never buy it in the supermarket again. Rather, buy the whole seeds and keep them airtight in a dark place in individual containers until you use them.
You will need :
Coriander seeds, black cardamom pods, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, bay leaves, peppercorn, small amount of cinnamon bark. Dry roast in pan on low heat until fragrant, about one minute. Put in spice blender until powder fine. Remove to jar, cover airtight.
Next, saute in ghee finely diced onions, garlic paste and grated ginger until onions are soft but not brown, add turmeric, chili powder, salt, a bit of sugar, lots of chopped fresh coriander with stems (cilantro) and lots of chopped, fresh, very ripe tomatoes. Add chopped fresh chili’s according to your tolerance of heat. Simmer for about 30 minutes. There should be enough moisture from the tomatoes so that after 30 minutes you should have a very thick sauce.
You could use this sauce by itself as a dip for naan (as I do), or use it as base for a quick, simple curry of chicken, vegetables, seafood or even beef. I usually make enough for two or three dishes. I let the base /sauce cool and freeze it in individual containers until I use them.
Bon Appetit ! Life is Good !
As usual, I have not included measurements, as I firmly believe part of learning how to cook and enjoy food your way at home you must experiment and practice a bit until it tastes just right FOR YOU ! 🙂
Chef Hans, this looks and sounds so wonderful. I have used the store bought garam masala, but it looks and sounds so easy to make with ingredients I already have that I’ll make my own now. Thank you for the list of ingredients.
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Enjoy, Ky. Cheers
Hey Chef Hans, Loved the way you appreciated Garam Masala, Even I am huge fan of it. I am working for a food netwroking website http://plattershare.com/index.php and it would be a pleasure for our team to get your opinion about food. As Its a complete food netwroking website it would provide you a great opporunity to meet people of food industry. See you on plattershare.
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yum, will give a try
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