I love curry. I know many people don't care for it, but make a cream sauce and add a good amount of curry powder and I will have trouble putting down a fork. There's something about the flavor which is both at the same time simple and complex that keeps the world hooked and basing their meal around it.
I can eat enough curry that it will emanate from my pores throughout the rest of the day. I often come back reeking so much from visiting an Indian buffet during lunch that my coworkers make comments about it. Perhaps I have added the second office nuisance, following only the shear vitriol saved for those that burn microwave popcorn at 2 in the afternoon. However, I keep up my shameful ways with gusto.
Indian food may be the first cuisine that I ever tried outside of my comfort zone. Growing up, I pretty much ate the basics. Corn flakes for breakfast, bologna sandwich for lunch, spaghetti or chicken with mashed potatoes for dinner. Day in and day out, I stuck to this routine without much complaining. Then one evening in college, I was invited by my roommate and some of his friends to try an Indian restaurant and I was hooked.
After that, I began trying whatever food I could come across, much like a local Anthony Bordain. I found a penchant for other cuisines, and expanded my Asian repertoire beyond chicken fried rice. Since that fateful day, I have also learned how to make many of these dishes.
I will show you a basic recipe for you to use in making any number of curry based sauces. This one is super quick and doesn't fuss with the multiple step layering that traditional Indian cooking favors.
You'll find this sauce both delicious and easy to make.
Basic curry sauce:
Half stick of butter
1 diced yellow onion
1 1.66 ounce jar curry powder (fresh)
2 cup of quality chicken stock
1 pint of heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon corn starch
Salt to taste
8 ounces of portobella mushrooms
1 half bag frozen peas
The freshness of the curry powder is of absolute importance here. Curry powder, which is an amalgamation of spices, definitely has a shelf life. One that is much shorter than prescribed on the packaging. This isn't something you buy and keep in the cabinet for a year before you use it. This is something you want to use soon after bringing it home from the store. This is why I built my recipe around using an entire jar of it, so I don't have anything lying around that can go stale.
1. Melt the butter in a heavy pan. Fry the onion in the melted butter.
2. Once the onion starts to really sweat, add the curry powder and fry for a minute or two. Add the stock, cover the pot, and let cook for a couple of minutes. We want the onion to cook enough so that it disintegrates and acts as a thickening agent.
3. Add your vegetables. Since we are cutting back on protein for the time being, I am using vegetables instead. I use half a bag of frozen peas and 8 ounces of cubed portobella mushroom. It can be any kind of vegetable, or even bean for that matter. If you want to use chicken instead, dice it and roll it into the onions. This is very similar to how the French would go about doing it.
4. Cover and cook until the mushrooms really start to sweat. Add more stock if it's getting a little dry. We want enough liquid to keep it from burning, but we're not making stew so keep that in mind.
5. Remove from heat and let the simmer come down. Add cream and stir. Bring back to medium low heat. We do not want this cream to scald. Once it does, it gets kind of gross and loses its creaminess and takes on a sad look.
6. Add corn starch to thicken. Let warm up for another ten minutes stirring. Once it gets to your desired thickness, take it off the heat.
7. Serve on top of brown rice.
8. Impress your wife.
OK, thanks for reading. Now I'm hungry.