Curry from scratch.

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  • Curry from scratch.
  • I’ve had pretty good results with this one…

    …but always make it a bit hotter.

    Not tried one where the meat has to be marinated yet though.

    Get down to your local Asian supermarket mate, we go to one on Leeds Road, Bradford and get 400-500g bags of literally any spice for £1.50-£2.00. Spend £20 or so every visit and come out with loads of stuff.

    Just make it up as you go along, with a bottle of Cobra by your side obviously 😉

    Oh, and one thing that is a must is Mr.Naga chillie paste – adds a bit of kick to your curry!


    Chunkymonkey nice one, which do you go to? I live in Harrogate so not too far 🙂

    Thanks great information.


    You should be able to pick up everything locally, shops down the local ghetto tend to have everything, the staple ingredients I tend to use all the time are ghee, cumin, tumeric, garam marsala, cardomon, cinnamon, nutmeg, bay leaves (fresh ideally, chilli powder, paprika, coconut milk, fresh coconut, ginger garlic, chillis and onions.

    I’ve recently started to a similar thing to the woman towards the end, I start by very lightly frying a few chopped carrots, an onion, ginger and 4-5 garlic cloves then take it out and coarsely blitz it, I then add it back into my wok after the coconut milk has gone in. Have also recently stopped frying/browning the meat first and basicly boiling it as the mixture reduces down, makes it more tender.

    I started off with a recipe online and have tweaked it since adding things like sugar, honey and the carrots mentioned earlier, couldn’t go back to stuff out of a jar now. Had a lovely crevette curry for lunch yesterday. 🙂

    Premier Icon Cougar

    This is something I’m trying to nail at the moment. Adding a lump of creamed coconut (grated in) seems to been the missing ingredient for me.

    There’s a couple mate – Pakeeza is one, will have a look in the morning and get the name of another. Went into Tesco on Canal Road the other day and they have started to stock similar stuff, look for a brand called Natco. Must admit though, whatever you do don’t forget Mr.Naga 😉 Got talking to the guy who own’s a curry house just outside Skipton and he swears by it – never have a curry without it now!


    Cougar why not use fresh? I use desicated if don’t have a fresh one but love the texture of the real deal.


    Brilliant guys. Looking forward to creating my signature dish.

    Thanks again.

    Premier Icon Cougar

    Cougar why not use fresh? I use desicated if don’t have a fresh one but love the texture of the real deal.

    Never thought to try, TBH. But dessicated isn’t the same, it’s too, eh, coconutty.

    Premier Icon NZCol

    I use some recipes off and they are awesome. The chicken pathia in particular is excellent as is the Korma. You can make it from scratch in the time it takes the rice to cook pretty much.



    O.K. Very much inspired by Rick Stein in India. I really fancy getting loads of spices and starting from scratch.

    Any good online spice shops? Any tips or recipes?

    Looking at Prawn Goan style as the Mrs is a veggie and likes heat.


    Premier Icon kayak23

    Show me the curry is good. Lots of videos.


    I have the book from this woman, it makes the basic authentic takeaway/restaurant curry sauce which is then adapted, its a very good book and creates excellent curries, its a bit of a faff but once the base sauce is made its very easy to do. I love it.

    Premier Icon Smudger666

    Adscatt +1

    Got the book, made the recipes for a while to get the hang of the different effects of each spice – now we just make the base sauce and play with spices – great fun.


    Putting prawns in something doesn’t make it vegetarian, unless I’m missing something.
    Anjum Anand’s book are good and seem to produce nice results.

    Premier Icon Coyote

    You could do worse than check out Pat Chapman for a start.

    The key is get the basics right and then start experimenting. Much like any cooking really.


    Also throw everything Rick Stein did out the window and start again, you’ll be more successful.

    My Wife did a 12 week indian cooking course a while back in asia and has some brilliant recipes. I’ll post up a couple of recipes when I get time at home.

    Bombay potatoes are suprisingly easy and awesome too.

    We’ve got garlic chilli turkey curry tonight with a side of dahl… mmmnnnnn nom nom nom nom.


    If you can’t actually be bothered doing them from scratch all the time (I sometimes can’t even though I have a vast array of spices) then this mix is very good

    The hot one especially so – just cook up a couple of onions and some tomatoes then chuck it in. No artificial additives or salt, just a mix of spices. The website also has some additional recipes you can make using the mix as a base.


    one thing that is a must is Mr.Naga chillie paste

    sorry but that is a big no from me…
    if you want to make it hot, any asian cash and carry and quite a few of the popular supermarkets such as tesco and sainsburys are now stocking dried chilli flakes, you could also just add a few chopped green chillies or if you want it super fiery add a Dorset Naga or ghost (Bhut Jolakia) chilli…but be careful with these as they are some of the hottests in the world and should be handled very carefully (with gloves or by the stem) and eaten in small quantities (skin only or add the seeds if you’re brave)…
    with regards to restaurants and take-aways that use Mr Naga…very lazy chefs who cant be arsed cooking food properly so they just add the stuff so you cant taste anything else….without it you would find that the curries are actually pretty piss poor and you could do better at home….
    how do i know?….been eating curries since before i could walk and ride….family have been in the curry trade for over 25 years…
    trust me guys Mr Naga is not the right way to cook a curry…


    I’ve found Madhur Jaffrey’s Curry easy is an excellent book for making interesting currys from scratch.

    It’s not one that helps you how to make take out style currys but is great for really tasty spicy dishes made with real spices (no pre-bought pastes)

    For spices I’d 2nd buying from an spice specialist or if you live in an area with a significant Asian population the supermarket may sell big bags in their “ethinic” area (generally a tenth of the price of the tiny spice jars)


    Paraphrasing here, but: if you wish to make a curry from scratch, you must first create the universe.


    Keralan style beef and coconut curry:

    Heat coconut oil in pan, very hot.
    Add tsp of black mustard seed until they dance, 5 sec.
    Lower heat and add a handful of fresh curry leaf.
    Chuck in a diced onion and some thinly sliced beef (about a lb).
    Then add some garlic and ginger, 3 or 4 cloves plus same amount of ginger (finely chopped or better pasted in pestle and mortar).
    Let that cook for 5-10mins.
    a couple of chopped tomatoes
    5 tsp garam masala
    1-2 tsp turmeric
    Half a coconut chopped quite small (it doesn’t soften much)
    1 tsp chilli (optional)
    Then wet with either water, or half a can of coconut milk (my diversion from the recipe, highly recommended).
    Simmer that for 20mins.
    Then top with fresh coriander.
    For authenticity, serve with either rice or bread (naan or parotta).
    For British style serve with rice, naan, parotta and six thousand poppadums.

    For coconut oil and curry leaf I use this place.

    Learnt that on a cooking course in India.
    Best £3.50 I ever spent.
    You will cream your **** pants, it really is that good. 😀

    Premier Icon Scapegoat

    Lamb on the bone, slow cooked curry

    If you can find this in a restaurant it will be called something like a Lamb Handi, Dhesi or sometimes even known as staff curry. I have been experimenting to get it right ever since I had one a year ago and there are absolutely no shortcuts to be found, it really needs hours of slowcooking!

    Sainsbury’s do a large pack of stewing lamb in their basics selection, which is perfect, but you could of course use any on the bone stewing lamb, such as neck, shin, breast etc.

    Two large onions
    200 ml vegetable oil
    1 tsp salt
    Tin chopped tomatoes
    Bulb of garlic or four heaped teaspoonsful of garlic puree
    1 inch root ginger
    1/2 tsp turmeric
    1kg stewing lamb on the bone
    Four heaped teaspoons garam massala
    Two heaped tsp paprika powder
    two tsp coriander
    tsp black cumin seeds or 1 tsp cumin powder
    6 cloves
    4 black cardomum pods
    2 inch piece of cinamon stick
    3/4 pint of stock made with 2 oxo cubes
    4-5 fresh green chillies to taste.
    Bunch fresh coriander

    Stage one.
    Blend the onion, garlic and ginger into a mush and add to the 200ml oil in a stovetop safe casserole eg Le Creuset, (Or if you don’t have one, do the cooking in this stage in a large frying pan/wok and transfer into a casserole in the oven later.) Cook this at a medium to low heat for about 10 minutes without browning it. Blend the tinned tomatoes into a smooth liquid. Take a couple of tablepoons of the garlic/onion ginger mix out and keep to one side.
    Add the salt, turmeric and tomato blend to the casserole and bring to the boil. Let it simmer for about ten more minutes, again on a low heat
    adding a splash of water to keep it from sticking.

    Next you need to gently roast the dry spices, from garam massala to cinnamon stick on the list. To do this simply heat up a large dry frying pan and add the powdered spices. After a minute or so you will start to get a toasted/roasted smell from the spices. Stir them quickly to stop them from burning and as soon as the roasted smell gets strong, empty them into the casserole dish, stirring quickly to create a thick brown paste in the casserole.

    Chop the lamb into manageable pieces with a meat cleaver, so you get half discs of neck, lumps of shin about three inches across, half ribs with all the meat still on them, you get the picture! Brown these in a frying pan or wok using the two tablespoons of onion sauce mix as a coating, then add them to the casserole.

    Now use the stock to deglaze the browning pan and add it to the casserole. Bring it to the boil and put the lid on, and into a warm oven 130 degrees for about three hours, or all day at 100 degrees.

    Half an hour before serving you will need to skim it as there will be a good inch of oil on the surface of the casserole. The one I did yesterday produced a mugful! Don’t be tempted to try and make this with reduced oil at the start, as it’s crucial to the way the wet spices cook.

    Now the tricky bit. The curry you have produced is at the mild to medium scale as it is. It has very little chilli fire, but has very warming spices from the garram massala. You will enjoy it now, but I think a bit of green chilli in it at this stage just puts the finishing touches to it. Add two or three deseeded and halved if you like it medium, or go the whole hog and add three or four chopped without taking the seeds out for a bit more spice.

    If you like it really hot, use dried red chillies, as many as you dare, crumbled into the mixture.

    Chop up the coriander leaves and add half now, stirring it in and putting it back in the oven for half an hour, and the rest sprinkled on the top as a garnish when serving.

    This is a fantastic dish for four or so to share out of the same pot with your own naan or (even better if you ask me) some big thick tandoori roti.
    Fight over the bones, this is a really good winter evening dish for a family or friends.


    Two fantastic vegetarian meals ^^

    Premier Icon Scapegoat

    He doesn’t specifically ask for vegetarian recipes, unless of course prawns grow on trees in Goa?


    Madhur Jaffery-Chicken in light sauce. Substitute Quorn pieces for the chicken. Mouth will love you forever. #promise

    Great Book

    This is an awesome book. Curries from scratch around the world, no unobtainable ingresients. Easy to follow if you know your way around the kitchen.


    Well, in his post the OP says that his Mrs is a veggie (technically a pescetarian I think), but lamb sounds pretty vege too, obviously.


    aP – Member

    Two fantastic vegetarian meals ^^

    Firstly, it appears that the lady in question is not a vegetarian.
    Secondly, with the correct meal, vegetarianism can be cured. 🙂

    Premier Icon NJA

    There is a fantastic Indian cook book called the three sisters. Everything I have made from that has been really good.


    Hansa’s veggy restaurant in Leeds is awesome and has it’s own cookbook:

    Hansa’s Cookbook


    My wife and I have a few books by Anjum Anand

    We find we can get most of the ingredients from Sainsbury’s and what we can’t we can get in the local chinese supermarket (which also does a load of japanese and indian imports as well). Most cities will have asian food stores – you’ll just need to find one.


    these guys are a fantastic way to make your own curries:

    always fresh ingredients and you don’t have to buy lots of something youre only goingto use once..!


    Cheers guys, those recipes sound amazing. The Mrs does eat fish, but me and my mates eat meat so bring on meat!


    Think I’m going to stock up on a list of spices from an online store. What are the main spices that every cupboard should have?


    Turmeric, Garam masala, coriander, etc. Most spice places have ‘starter kits’ – you’ll need the stainless steel spice box obviously


    mixed curry powder
    tandoori masala powder
    garam masala
    chilli powder
    turmeric powder
    coriander powder (dhaniya)
    cumin powder (jeera)
    crushed red chilli flakes
    ground cinnamon
    fenugreek seeds
    fennel seeds
    cumin seeds
    star aniseed
    green cardamom
    bay leaves
    cassia bark
    curry leaves
    fresh garlic / ginger (you can get paste as well)
    green chillies

    all of this can be obtained from any local asian cash and carry…..but some supermarkets such as sainsbury’s also now stock them but at a higher price…

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