Growing up, my mother put dinner on the table six nights a week. We had everything from experimental quinoa recipes to Hamburger Helper to, when my mother was pregnant, cake and ice cream night. While cake and ice cream night was a huge contender for this article, my favorite was day number seven. On Sundays my dad made curry.
When my neighbor asked what curry is, the most honest answer I could come up with was “the good version of stew.” The official definition is “a dish of meat, vegetables, etc., cooked in an Indian-style sauce of strong spices and turmeric and typically served with rice.” Of course you can always use curry powder from the store, but making the base (Indian-style sauce) uses ingredients that are beneficial to your health, like ginger and garlic.
This is the recipe I use when I cook it, but I’ll tell you the same thing I tell my husband: curry is practically an art. Experiment and have fun with it. Use different meats and vegetables or go crazy with the spices. It may not always win top chef, but it’ll be yours.
one medium onion, diced, to taste.
One or two bay leaves
five or six cloves
a teaspoon of pre-diced ginger, or a thumb sized piece of ginger root (diced)
a teaspoon of minced or diced garlic
oil, enough to coat bottom of pot.
Meat: 3 lbs of chicken or equivalent of other meat, cut into bite sized pieces. Fish doesn’t work well.
Potatoes and tomatoes: chopped, to taste.
Rice: cooked separately. 2 cup uncooked.
cumin and turmeric: add little by little until yellow-light orange color is achieved.
put oil in good sized cooking pot and heat.
Add onions, garlic, and ginger, stir occasionally until onions turn yellow/transparent.
Add 1c water.
If adding potatoes, add them now
Now would be a good time for the bay leaves and cloves.
add Cumin and turmeric, and more garlic or salt to taste.
Let cook for two minutes, then add chicken and tomatoes.
Add dash of cinnamon and let cook, covered, for 25-30 minutes or until it smells good.
Serve over rice when you’re ready and dig in.
Serving Size: Makes a good family sized-pot. We fed ten people when my husband and I cooked for our neighbors.
- Cooking time depends on the meat. Tougher meats like beef will need a longer cook time.
- I know it’s good, but save the leftovers. As they marinate overnight in the fridge, they taste even better the next day. For leftover rice, throw the desired amount in a pan with some water and heat, stirring, until water is evaporated for light fluffy rice.