A Meal Fit for a Maharajah

Tonight’s blog is a re-blog from last year. You see, we’re doing a curry night tonight and I wanted to tell you how I make my ‘one sauce, several curries’ gravy!

So, what’s in store for us tonight then? Remember, I’ll make my basic sauce and from that make a chicken, lamb or fish curry. Plus a couple of veg curries. I may add extra garlic, ginger, chilli, turmeric, tinned tomatoes or purée and extra garam masala or cumin, changing the intensity and the look of the different dishes.

Do not make the mistake of mixing your veg into one curry! Be focussed! Let’s up the game shall we? I’m planning on making a mutter (pea) curry, dahl (lentil) and a Bombay aloo to accompany a salmon curry with basmati rice today. Now starts my re-blog on how I make my basic sauce.

Okay, I love my hob. That was all I had to work with from my time spent in Mumbai, India. And that is where I perfected my ability to cook a damn good curry. I have spoken about cooking various curries throughout my writing of this diary and today I am just going to reiterate on making my gravy.

As ever you need to start with a good, tasty gravy (curry sauce). Blitz onions until pulp and fry in a little oil. Add your spices and cook out. My favourite combo is garlic, ginger, chilli, cumin, coriander leaf, garam masala or Madras mix, turmeric and salt. Add tomato purée, cook out further, then add water or a little stock (Knorr cubes are fine). You want a slightly thickened consistency and this I regulate purely with the volume of onion and tomato purée to the water or stock! Cook for 30 – 40 minutes on a low heat or until the rawness of the spices have morphed into that sweetness and harmony of fragrant spice that is all a good curry should be!

Now come your options! I usually cook at least a litre of sauce and freeze some but yesterday I used the whole lot and made a feast. Pre-soaked yellow lentils were simmered with some of the sauce plus the addition of extra turmeric, chilli and garlic, cooked on the hob for maybe 2 hours. The longer you cook, the more sumptuous the lentils become. I always use a potato masher towards the end of cooking!

Bombay potatoes are just way too simple! I tried a few recipes from the internet way back but settled on just steaming cubes of potatoes, cooling and placing in a freezer bag and covering with some of my curry sauce. Tie the bag, give it a squish and put it in the fridge.

I actually put all of my curries in a freezer bag once cooled and lay them alongside each other in the fridge until service. It makes cooking multiple curries a real doddle to serve up. Just heat one after the other in a microwave before serving up! There’s usually a bit of squishing of the bags to regulate heat and some re-microwaving to get everything to the same temperature – but that’s half the fun of ‘curry night’.

I also microwave the dry poppadoms for 20 seconds, turn, then a further 20 seconds. Perfection and so much healthier than shallow frying. But if you much prefer the taste of the fried, just use a pastry brush and lightly brush the dry poppadom with cooking oil on either side before microwaving.

Britain’s favourite dish ‘Tikka Masala’ simple! Just add ground almonds and a little double cream to the basic sauce! Bliss. My favourite ever would be ‘King Prawn Tikka Masala’. The bigger, the better. Just marinade the prawns for an hour with the basic combination of lemon juice, garlic, ginger, chilli, tandoori spice mix, salt and pepper! I use a freezer bag for my marinade.

Okay, the other dish’s were tandoori boned and skinned chicken thighs and mutter (pea curry). The thighs were 3 hours marinated in the same marinade just mentioned. No red food colouring like your local Indian takeaway might use! The chicken was cooked in an oven dish covered in foil for 20 minutes, then dry heat for a further 15. Moist and tender was the result. The last main dish of mutter had a variation to it last night as I added green beans to the peas – cooked with some of Dadda’s curry sauce, a tin of tomatoes and a little extra salt – divine ‘Amrit’ (manna) indeed.

My rice was of course cooked in the microwave – see earlier entry for 100% perfect basmati rice and our nibbles on the side were homemade onion bhaji’s and pakoras. I’m pretty sure I have covered those in an earlier diary entry, but if not, do let me know – they’re so simple to make and so tasty. The children love them!

A meal fit for a Maharajah!

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A Gay Dad reflecting on life in the Shires of England with my not so famous five and two rapscallion Dalmatian hounds

17 thoughts on “A Meal Fit for a Maharajah”

  1. Looks great, Andi! And the photo at the top looks yum! Sorry if I missed this in the post, do you have exact measurements for the ingredients or just suggest eyeballing? I’m saving this for future reference. Enjoy your meal tonight!

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    1. I can certainly do exact ingredients Ab. Though not he spice mix can be ‘tampered with’! Tell you what! Like dadda’s jam, my next post on ‘curry night’ will give complete measurements, just in case… you know the best tikka masala sauce is my basic gravy with the addition of ground almonds and a little double cream. Great with chicken or seafood!!! Have a lovely afternoon guys! 😃

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      1. Thanks Andi, we just back home from a long drive in the country.
        The views were amazing but it was too hot to get out and walk as we had Hank with us.
        Another hot day ~ 96 degrees! Yikes!
        I hope you are having a wonderful day!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Good evening Margie. Your day trip sounds lovely but WoW, the temperature is really up there! Warmish here bit thunderstorms and torrential rain at times! The garden will inevitably look greener! Everything quiet! John already in bed. Just me and the hounds! Watching ‘Mommy Dearest’ OMG!!! Poor Cristina. Joan should have been on our show! 😂 (maybe not)!!! Have a pleasant evening dear Margie.

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      3. I am off to bed now Andi and I guess it’s about time that you will be waking up, LOL, hope you have a great morning and I am planning on a great night’s sleep! As for Mommy Dearest, I have watched that movie a number of times, Joan Crawford was quite an actress and it’s best she was not on your show. LOL I had a wonderful evening, thank you, Andi ~ spent the time playing Monopoly with Jeff. 🙂

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      4. Ash that classic game monopoly. I love that game. We don’t play it with the children as yet. Still a little chaotic! Caleb would no doubt swallow and loose the small pieces. I have vowed not to buy them Andy games with small pieces on their birthdays in 2 weeks. Just single, solid items. Nothing with small pieces, but the choices are limited. I’m tired of parts being broken and taken / lost and the entire things/ item being thrown away! Nite nite dear Margie… 💤

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      5. Glad to know you love this game too, Andi.
        I agree with your not playing it with the children, way too many small parts ~ maybe they get older though they would enjoy to play it ~ it’s such a fun game!

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      6. Hello and good morning to you dear Margie. I’m about to sort the children’s dinner! Chips’n’choices tonight as several things to use up in the fridge. Maybe no blog today, I’ll see how I feel later. Everyone happy here three at school today. Caleb had his plaster removed Tuesday afternoon! I’m terrible aren’t I that in itself is something to blog. Let’s get through dinner hey! As for daddy and dadda’s dinner! I have been craving a kebab. You know, the bad sort! A doner kebab. Really looking forward to this. It’s been maybe 2 years since feeling a bit drunk (on a night off) and eating a doner kebab!!! Have a nice day in the summer sun… 😊

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      7. Hello Andi, I am so glad to hear that Caleb got his plaster removed! Yay!
        A doner kelab sounds wonderful for you and daddy’s dinner and I am sure the children will love the chips’n”choices!

        I just got back from a nice walk with Hank, I had to get out there before it gets too hot as poor Hank just drags himself in the heat!
        On my menu today for dinner is eggplant parmesan, stuffed mushrooms and four beautiful strawberries.( just picked the berries from my little strawberry patch, the berries are so very sweet and juicy, I took a little bite and it was heavenly!
        Hope you have a wonderful rest of your day, Andi 🙂

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      8. Your strawberries sound great Margie! We have maybe 3 red ones at the moment, but need 5 obviously before we pick them! The chips’n’choices finished now! The chips were in fact Dadda’s ‘Torn Potatoes’. Also heavenly. I spoke about them on my blog maybe a year ago! Just Potatoes in their skin, cooked in the microwave. Cool them and skin with a knife. Then using 2 hands, slightly squeeze top and bottom, left and right, then pull them into 2 halves. Then break into 2 thin quarters. They should be very rough and bumpy looking. With all this surface area, they deep fry into the most amazing fried potato of all time! I should have put all that in a blog really! Haha. Just for you Margie. I might leave the blog tonight… have a lovely day. I am glad that Hank enjoyed his early walk. Thunder and lightning here in ‘The Shires’ again today. The day almost at an end here. Bye for now Margie 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      9. The torn potatoes sound amazing Andi, thank you for sharing your recipe with me!
        Gosh, thunder and lightning there again ~ guess you must have spent the day inside ~ hope the sunshine returns soon ~
        Have a great evening, Andi 🙂

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