Culinary Travel Around The World: Indian Curry

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Confession time: I have not been to India. Yet! I have the full intention that this part of the world is going to see me one day. In the meantime, I will keep dreaming and eating this super yummy curry. It comes straight out of the kitchen of Mrs S., the lovely Mum of one of my best friends, and seeing that she is from India she knows what the real stuff is about! My friend kindly explained to me that this is unlikely to be like any other curry you have had before particularly if you consider that most curry places actually serve you Bangladeshi curry (I know, right!). It’s by far not as heavy as the greasy counterparts that you usually get in restaurants and the flavours are amazing. Now this curry really ripens with age (I am talking hours rather than days), so if you can, cook it a day in advance and leave it stewing in its own juices for a few hours for the flavours to really come together. I usually have this with brown rice (my friend did promise me to teach me how to make flatbread, though, so watch this space), but can also eat this by itself with just some green beans on the side (which is what I do when I am not very hungry).

So, now you better get shopping, then cooking, because this you really don’t want to miss out (and don’t let me catch you with your fingers in the pan while the flavours mingle!).

Note: if you are cooking brown rice from scratch, I recommend soaking it overnight in acidic medium to make it more digestible. If you are making the curry a day ahead, put the rice on to soak that same day, so that you can have it the next day together.

 

Indian Curry

Vegan, dairy free, gluten free, nut free, soy -free

Serves 2-3 people

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(Apologies for the rubbish picture quality – I had technical difficulties, so ended up using an older camera!)

 
Ingredients:

3-4 tbsp coconut oil
2-4 cloves (remember how many!)
1 tbsp mustard seeds
1 cinnamon stick
1 tbsp cumin seeds
4 spring onions, sliced (keep the greener slices aside)
~ 2 cm ginger, grated
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red chilli, finely sliced and de-seeded if you don’t like it too hot (don’t rub your eyes with your fingers after slicing!)
500g chopped tomatoes (preferably from a jar)
½ tsp coconut sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin
1 sweet potato, cubed
1 small head broccoli, chopped into florets
1 jar (or can) of chickpeas, rinsed
1 cup of brown rice
2 pods of cardamom (optional)
To serve: juice of ½ lime, freshly chopped coriander, green sliced spring onions)
 

Directions:

For the curry:

  1. Parboil the sweet potato cubes and the broccoli florets in boiling water for about 5 minutes. Drain, then set aside.
  2. Heat the coconut oil in a sauce pan over medium to high heat, then add the cloves, the mustard seeds and the cinnamon sticks. Add lid on top and wait for the mustard seeds to pop. Turn heat to medium high and once the mustard seeds have popped, add in the cumin and wait until it changes colours (about 30-40 seconds).
  3. Add in the chopped spring onions, grated ginger, minced garlic and sliced chilli, mix with the spices, then add ~50 mL of water to the pan, so that the bottom is slightly covered and the spices and herbs get cooked for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes, salt, sugar, cumin and turmeric. Stir in. Add sweet potato, chickpeas and broccoli head, then bring to a boil and simmer for about 1 hour. Ideally, leave the flavours to infuse for a few hours.
  5. Stir in lime juice just before serving and top with spring onion slices and chopped coriander.

For the rice:

  1. Soak in three times the amount of water and 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar for a minimum of 12 h. Drain and rinse well.
  2. Add rice to a pan with 2 ½ times the amount of water needed. Add cardamom pods for extra flavour (optional). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Keep an eye on the rice to avoid it boiling dry. Brown rice should take about 30 minutes to cook.

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