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Easy Indian Recipe

(Skip the blurb)

This is my easy Indian recipe - a basic anything curry. It can be followed and will produce a perfectly good meal, but the main purpose of this is to show how I write the recipes on this site.

Basic Ingredients

Meat of some kind - about ½lb (225g)
1 large Onion
2 cloves Garlic
Curry Powder
Chilli
Oil

Notes on Ingredients

(This is where you get to make some sense of the above)

I will include this in most of my Indian recipes. There are some ingredients you can play about with to suit your taste. Others make the dish what they are. This is a very basic Indian recipe and is meant mostly as an example but the points are all valid.

Firstly you will note that there is nothing so precise as 'Serves 2'. This is probably the most singularly pointless comment in any recipe. It is at best a guideline and usually a disappointment. It all depends on how big you are, how hungry you are, what else you are eating with it, and about a dozen other things. So I will try to find the most appropriate way of quantifying the thing.

You also notice that there is a lack of quantities for some ingredients in this example. I will include quantities for most things in most recipes, where I don't there will be a note about it.

The links are generally to pages giving information on the ingredients - this may be useful (or maybe even interesting).

Meat. You can use beef, lamb, pork, fish even. Apologies to the vegetarians; I have nothing against you (you will find lots of vegetarian recipes in here) and I really like vegetarian food. This is just an example of and easy Indian recipe, and if you wish you can simply substitute the meat with an assortment of chopped vegetables.

Onion. About a standard largish onion (not the huge Spanish onions) Or if you only have small onions then you have to judge, but depending on how small they are you may need a few (doubling the diameter makes a massive difference to the volume)

Garlic. Well how much do you like? Personally I would put maybe 3 or 4 reasonable cloves in this amount but you may not like as much or maybe more.

Curry Powder. You can buy ready made curry powders or make your own (here are some curry powder recipes). Again how much you use is largely up to you, some ready made curry powders have chilli in them so this could be a factor. If you're a newbie then I suggest between 1 and 2 teaspoons in the above quantities.

Chilli. Again a mater of taste. Most Indian recipes will have some sort of chilli and you can use fresh chillis - red or green, dried chillis - whole or crushed, or chilli powder. If you use fresh green chillis then go cautiously. There are a number of varieties and some can be pretty awesome. For a medium curry I would use no more than 1 chopped fresh green chilli or ½ teaspoon of chilli powder in the above quantities.

Oil. This is a biggie and makes a big difference even to a easy Indian recipe like this. There are loads of different oils you can use. See the Oils page for the full story but for now lets say that ghee is good or you can use butter or plain vegetable oil.

Basic Method

Cut up the meat into cubes between ½ inch and 1 inch (1-2cm) depending on how chunky you want it.
Peel and slice the onion
Peel and chop the garlic
Chop the chillis if you are using fresh chillis, crush whole dried ones

Heat the oil in a pan
Add onions and garlic and chillis if using fresh
Cook till soft
Add crushed chillis or chilli powder if using
Stir and cook for 2 mins
Add curry powder and cook for further 2 mins
Add meat and brown on high heat stiring all the time
Add some water bring to the boil
Reduce heat to very low, cover and cook till meat is tender, stiring ocassionally and adding more water as necessary.

Notes on Method

Even easy Indian recipes are more than Ingredients and Method and although this is pretty basic there are a few points to note.

Or if you're bored already go to the Recipe Indexes to find the Indian recipe that you want.

Chop the onions to suit yourself. If you chop them very finely then prolonged cooking will make then disolve into the sauce. chopping them larger will leave nice chunks of onion in the dish. Both are good.

The pan. I use a cast iron sauce pan with a lid for this type of curry. It is good for frying the onions and for simmering.

Always add chillis and especially chilli powder before the meat and make sure it is cooked. Chilli powder which is not cooked out properly will irritate your digestive tract (yes all of it).

The same applies, to a lesser extent, to curry powder.

Instead of water you can add milk, yoghurt, tinned tomatoes coconut milk, tomato puree, or any combination that gives a sauce that the meat will cook in and which you like.

How long it takes to cook depends on how chunky you cut the meat and how well done you want the end product. I would simmer for at least 45 mins but cooking for a couple of hours on a very low heat will do no harm as long as it doesn't boil dry - just check and stir occassionally.

So, there's an easy Indian recipe. If you're a newbie then you can try this - it is perfectly edible (quite yummy if you use some yoghurt or tinned tomatoes). The result can vary with different curry powders.

I have suggested about ½lb of meat so that the rest of the ingredients can be proportioned to this. The end result together with a simple rice dish would adequately feed 2 people of reasonable appetite. If you make other stuff to go with it then obviously it would serve more.

If you are more experienced (or as you become more experienced) with Indian recipes then you can skim over the notes and just look as the basic ingredients and method - you will know how to go from there.





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