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Easy Curry Sauce Recipe

Easy Curry Sauce Recipe. Everybody wants to recreate their favourite Indian Restaurant/takeaway or traditional Indian dish at home. How do you go about it?

The first answer you will probably get is ”You need to use a curry base sauce or gravy!”.

British Indian Restaurant Base Sauce

It’s not the wrong answer. Knowing how to make a base sauce will help you recreate some of your favourite restaurant and takeaway dishes. And so below you will find a really basic Indian Restaurant style curry base sauce.

Cooking with a base sauce, as they do in British Indian Restaurants or B.I.R as it’s known is one small part of cooking Indian food. I love it! Sometimes I want more though.

As a Chef I find it easy to adapt recipes. I can make a base sauce to suit a dish I am preparing. I personally don’t want a freezer full of a base sauce that is going to make my food taste a bit samey after a while. My base sauce does enough for 6 – 8 portions. That’s just about one meal for our family! If you are cooking for less, it can still be frozen and if you want to make more just double the quantity.

So here is my Really, Really Simple Base Sauce…

Really, Really Simple Base Sauce

‘Ome
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 31 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 4 tbsp of oil not a strong one so vegetable, rapeseed (not cold pressed) or sunflower oil.
  • 3 large onions sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 big fat cloves of garlic
  • 1 inch cubed piece of fresh ginger
  • 3 tsp mild curry Masala ('Ome Made B.I.R Curry Masala is ideal!) or you could use 1 tsp each of ground cumin, coriander and turmeric
  • 1.2 litres of water
  • A handful of coriander stalks
  • 400 ml tin of tomatoes they get blitzed so chopped or whole

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a large pan. Once hot add the onions and salt and gently fry for 10 minutes or until the onions are starting to soften.
  • Add the garlic and ginger and fry for a couple more minutes
  • Add the curry Masala or spices, along with a splash of water. Give a quick stir and mix and then pour in the water
  • Bring to the simmer and cook for 45 minutes, lid off
  • Add the tinned tomatoes and coriander stalks
  • Bring back to the simmer and cook for another 30 minutes
  • Take the pan off the heat and blitz with an immersion blender until you have a smooth sauce
  • Put back on a low heat ready for adding to your curry. If it looks a little thick add some water. It should be slightly thicker than full fat milk.
  • Use in a curry recipe as directed.

Notes

This is so easy to adapt. Feel free to add a small amount of peppers, carrot or any of the other usual base ingredients you find in different recipes.
I have made this sauce in less time than it says, giving it 30 minutes before adding the tomatoes and coriander and then cooking for only another 20 minutes. It was still good!
Of course you could fry your ingredients off and then add to a pressure cooker or soup maker along with all the other ingredients and it will still be just as good. Just follow the cooking times for a soup.
This base works really well in a curry when you use the method of adding diluted tomato paste to you cooked out spices. For 4 people use 2 tbsp of tomato puree diluted in 300ml of boiling water. Add this to your curry when you have fried your onion, garlic, ginger and spices and let it reduce down so you’re left with a thick paste. Then you can start adding your base sauce as normal.
Keyword Base Curry Sauce, British Indian Restaurant, Curry Gravy, Indian Style, Indian Take away, Indian Takeway style curry

But There’s more!

Cooking Indian isn’t just about base sauce.

It’s about techniques too.

There are two techniques that you must understand even to make an easy curry sauce.

Caramelise Your Onions!

When using a base sauce this is achieved by cooking the sauce down at the highest heat you can so that the sauce caramelises around the edge.

However you can get this caramelisation before the liquid is added by slowly cooking the onions in plenty of oil for a little longer than you would when cooking a base sauce. The onions soften and go a deep brown colour, releasing their natural sweet flavour.

This is to do with the maillard reaction. Google it if you like but all you really need to know is that it’s a reaction that happens when cooking food which makes it taste great! Think of a steak that is cooked on a searing hot BBQ with the chargrilled flavour versus a pale grey coloured steak cooked under a moderate kitchen grill? Get it? That’s the maillard reaction.

Blooming Spices!

No, this isn’t about getting angry with spices!

‘Blooming’ is the technique of cooking the rawness out of the spices and releasing all the aromatic, flavoursome oils they contain. If you have ever had a curry that has a bit of a gritty texture, it’s probably down to the spices not being cooked out properly. The spices can also have a bitter flavour if not cooked out but then this can also happen if you burn the spices.

To bloom your spices they need to be cooked in oil, plenty of oil. To little oil and they will burn and catch. Better to use lots of oil and spoon it off at the end of cooking the dish rather than skimp on it.

However if you really want to cut down on the oil make sure you have jug of hot water handy. Just as the spices begin to stick add a splash of the water. It’s not the best method but sometimes if you have to cut down on oil for health or medical reasons, it’s the only way.

So generally speaking the start of a curry goes; heat oil in a pan, add onion (if not using a base sauce), garlic, ginger and then spices. To bloom the spices they need to cook for 40 – 60 seconds on a lowish heat, stirring so they don’t catch.

It’s Not All About That Base!

I have already written a post about Indian Hotel Gravy, just click the link if you want to read more.

Hotel Gravy has a lot more depth of flavour and because the onions have already been caramelised it means you don’t have to reduce on a high heat when added to the pan. And that means less splatter! Winner!

Here is my version and again it’s a really easy curry sauce recipe…

And there’s more!

While doing some research I discovered that in India they have a myriad of base sauces that they use depending on what dish they are cooking.

There’s two that I find really useful.

One is a White Gravy, used for mild, subtly spiced dishes .

The other is a Yellow Gravy which falls in between a white gravy and hotel gravy. A good allrounder!

There is another one, Makhani Gravy. I will be giving this one a post to itself shortly but if you’re desperate then I reccomend you look at Glebe Kitchen version (just google it!).

I have also included a recipe for a Madras Curry Sauce… Just add the main ingredient and voila! instant Madras. Or if you like things hot just dilute and use as a base sauce for other dishes!

As well as an instant Madras sauce, there’s also a Tikka Masala sauce. Again just plonk in some Chicken Tikka or whatever you want and you have an instant dish.

These two instant sauces are great if you’re entertaining and can be made a couple days in advance and refrigerated until you need them.

The recipes are below.

Keep an eye on the blog for recipes coming up where I will be using these Easy Curry Sauce recipes!

Curry On Folks!

And remember all of my curry masalas can be purchased online at www.omemade.co.uk

White Curry Gravy

A light coloured, delicate flavoured curry gravy to use when making dishes such as Korma or other subtle spiced dishes.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Cuisine Indian
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 4 tbsp oil
  • 3 Indian bay leaf (tej patta)
  • 5 green cardamom
  • 3 large onions sliced
  • 70 g cashew nuts
  • 3 cloves of garlic finely chopped or grated
  • 3 green finger chillies
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 2 tbsp yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp corn flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1.5 ltr Water

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan. Gently fry the bay leaf and cardamom for around a minute.
  • Add the sliced onions and on a low heat cook for around 20 minutes until beginning to turn golden brown.
  • Add the cashew nuts and fry for a couple minutes more.
  • Add the garlic, green chilli and white pepper. Fry for a minute.
  • Mix the corn flour with the yoghurt and stir in to the pan.
  • Add the salt and the sugar, stir in and then add the water.
  • Stir the mixture until it comes to a simmer.
  • Cook the gravy for 30 minutes.
  • Remove the cardamom and bay leaf and blend the gravy with a hand blender or blender (leave to cool slightly if doing the latter otherwise the steam will build up and blow the lid off!)
  • Once smooth the gravy is ready to use.
Keyword White Curry Gravy, Korma, Indian Gravy, Indian Sauce, Korma Sauce, Mild Curry Sauce

Yellow Curry Gravy

Yellow curry gravy is the next ‘flavour’ step up from White Curry Gravy. It can still be used for Kormas and mild and medium dishes but has a little more spice and flavour.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 min
Cuisine Indian
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 4 tbsp oil
  • 3 Indian bay leaves (Tej Patta)
  • 5 green cardamom pods
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • 3 large onions sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 inch piece of ginger finely chopped or grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic finely chopped or grated
  • 3 green finger chillies chopped
  • 70 g cashew nuts
  • 1 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder or 0.5 tsp of normal chilli and 0.5 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 3 tablespoons plain natural yoghurt
  • 1.5 litre water

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan. Gently fry the bay leaf, cinnamon and cardamom for around a minute.
  • Add the sliced onions and salt, cook on a low heat for around 30 minutes, stirring often, until beginning to turn deep brown.
  • Add the cashew nuts and fry for a couple minutes more.
  • Add the garlic, ginger and green chilli. Fry for a minute.
  • Add the ground spices and cook, stirring for 30 – 40 seconds
  • Stir in the tomato puree and cook gently for 30 seconds, stirring.
  • Mix in the yoghurt followed by the water
  • Stir the mixture until it comes to a simmer.
  • Cook the gravy for 30 minutes.
  • Remove the cardamom, bay leaf and cinnamon. Blend the gravy with a hand blender or blender (leave to cool slightly if doing the latter otherwise the steam will build up and blow the lid off!)
  • Once smooth the gravy is ready to use.
Keyword Yellow Curry Gravy, Indian Curry Sauce, Base Gravy, Mild Curry Sauce

Madras Curry Gravy

This is gravy for a restaurant style Madras dish.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 3 medium onion sliced
  • 50 g garlic finely chopped or grated or use paste
  • 30 g ginger finely chopped or grated or use paste
  • 1 tbsp ‘Ome Made B.I.R Curry Masala
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tsp chilli powder
  • 400 g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 400 g water
  • 2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tbsp kasoori methi
  • 2 tbsp ground almonds (leave out if you have a nut allergy)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp mint sauce
  • 1 tsp tamarind concentrate
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1.5 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan.
  • Add the onions and fry gently, stirring, until a nice dark brown colour. This should take 30 – 40 minutes
  • Add the garlic and ginger and fry for 30 seconds
  • Add the curry Masala and ground spices, fry for a further 40 seconds
  • Add the tomatoes and water. Bring to a simmer and cook for 45 minutes
  • Blend the gravy using a hand blender
  • Bring back to the simmer and add all the other ingredients.
  • Cook for a further 15 minutes before adding you main ingredient or portioning and freezing.
Keyword Madras Curry Recipe, Curry Base Sauce, Spicy Curry Sayce, Restaurant Style Curry Ssuce

Tikka Masala Curry Gravy

This is gravy for a restaurant style Tikka Masala dish.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 20 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic finely chopped or grated
  • 1 tbsp 'Ome Made B.I.R Curry Masala or curry powder
  • 1 tbsp 'Ome Made Tandoori Masala
  • 1 tsp tomato puree diluted in 175ml water
  • 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp vinegar white wine or cider
  • 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • ½ green pepper chopped
  • 4 green chillies chopped medium heat unless you like it spicy!
  • 2 tsp 'Ome Made Garam Masala
  • 100 ml single cream
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan.
  • Add the onions and fry gently, stirring, until a nice dark brown colour. This should take 20 – 30 minutes
  • Add the garlic and fry for 30 seconds further.
  • Add the curry Masala and Tandoori Masala. Fry for a minute stirring all the time. If the spices are getting dry and sticking, add a splash of hot water.
  • Add the watered down tomato paste and reduce down to a thick paste.
  • Add the tinned tomatoes, vinegar, tomato ketchup and a further 200ml of water (½ tomato tin full).
  • Bring the mixture to a simmer then add the green pepper and chillies.
  • Simmer for 45 minutes before blending using a stick blender.
  • Bring back to the simmer and add the rest of the ingredients.
  • To use simply add chicken or lamb tikka, Tandoori prawns, paneer or vegetables of your choice for a vegetarian version.
Keyword Easy, Tikka Masala Sauce, Indian Curry Sauce, Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe
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Base Curry Sauce

Really Really Simple Base Curry Sauce

When it comes to Base Curry Sauce this is as simple as it gets! A few ingredients that you should be able to memorise and it can easily be made from start to finish in 1.5 hours (I’ve done it in less!).

This is my go to recipe for base sauce these days. A great recipe as you can get this put on and by the time you’ve done your prep for the main dish for instance, your base is cooked and ready to add.

This recipe makes enough for 4 – 6 portions of curry, depending on how saucy you like it. If you want to make more to freeze, for convenience, just double or even triple up.

What Is Curry Base Sauce?

Curry base sauce or gravy is basically a stock. The predominant ingredient is onion.

Indian restaurants they have a base sauce which is added to fried garlic, ginger, different spices (adapted for various dishes) and other ingredients.

High heat is used to quickly reduce the base sauce which results in a caramelisation of the sauce, which is where the flavour comes from. This allows the restaurants to produce many different dishes, very quickly. If they were cooking from scratch they wouldn’t be able to do that and we would be waiting an age for our curry!

Of course most people aren’t cooking for 100s of people a night. It’s still nice to be able to recreate that Indian restaurant or takeaway flavour though, isn’t it? And that is why many people in the UK make their own base sauce because who wouldn’t want that authentic Indian restaurant flavour? Especially if like me, you don’t go out for an Indian meal very often.

I’ve Made My Base… Now What?

This base curry sauce is ideal for any Indian recipe that requires a base sauce.

A good place to start would be some of the basic curries I have given on my British Indian Restaurant blog.

If you’re looking for inspiration have a look on the Facebook group The Curry Secret. A friendly group where you can discuss all things curry related.

There are many authors and You Tubers that specialise in British Indian Restaurant style cooking. Why not use this base for their recipes too.

What About The Spice Mixes?

I make a number of curry masalas that are perfect for homemade curries. They are available to buy at www.omemade.co.uk

Of course you could always have a go at blending spices to make your own bespoke blend.

More Recipes From ‘Ome Made

Lamb Madras

Goan Pork Vindaloo

Chicken Pathia

Chicken Jalfrezi

Mutton Curry

Chicken Tikka Masala




Really, Really Simple Base Sauce

‘Ome
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 31 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 4 tbsp of oil not a strong one so vegetable, rapeseed (not cold pressed) or sunflower oil.
  • 3 large onions sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 big fat cloves of garlic
  • 1 inch cubed piece of fresh ginger
  • 3 tsp mild curry Masala ('Ome Made B.I.R Curry Masala is ideal!) or you could use 1 tsp each of ground cumin, coriander and turmeric
  • 1.2 litres of water
  • A handful of coriander stalks
  • 400 ml tin of tomatoes they get blitzed so chopped or whole

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a large pan. Once hot add the onions and salt and gently fry for 10 minutes or until the onions are starting to soften.
  • Add the garlic and ginger and fry for a couple more minutes
  • Add the curry Masala or spices, along with a splash of water. Give a quick stir and mix and then pour in the water
  • Bring to the simmer and cook for 45 minutes, lid off
  • Add the tinned tomatoes and coriander stalks
  • Bring back to the simmer and cook for another 30 minutes
  • Take the pan off the heat and blitz with an immersion blender until you have a smooth sauce
  • Put back on a low heat ready for adding to your curry. If it looks a little thick add some water. It should be slightly thicker than full fat milk.
  • Use in a curry recipe as directed.

Notes

This is so easy to adapt. Feel free to add a small amount of peppers, carrot or any of the other usual base ingredients you find in different recipes.
I have made this sauce in less time than it says, giving it 30 minutes before adding the tomatoes and coriander and then cooking for only another 20 minutes. It was still good!
Of course you could fry your ingredients off and then add to a pressure cooker or soup maker along with all the other ingredients and it will still be just as good. Just follow the cooking times for a soup.
This base works really well in a curry when you use the method of adding diluted tomato paste to you cooked out spices. For 4 people use 2 tbsp of tomato puree diluted in 300ml of boiling water. Add this to your curry when you have fried your onion, garlic, ginger and spices and let it reduce down so you’re left with a thick paste. Then you can start adding your base sauce as normal.
Keyword Base Curry Sauce, British Indian Restaurant, Curry Gravy, Indian Style, Indian Take away, Indian Takeway style curry

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Simple Southern Fried Chicken Recipe

‘Ome Made The Chicken Went Down To Georgia, Perfect For Southern Fried Chicken!

You just can’t beat the flavour of Southern Fried Chicken. The Chicken Went Down To Georgia Rub-a-Dub-Rub takes all the flavours of the American South, blends them together to give a seasoning that can be added to flour (or a gluten free substitute) which is perfect for coating drumsticks, thighs or wings to fry or bake for lovely crispy pieces of chicken. Or you can just use it to rub in to chicken, pork, prawns or vegetables before grilling, roasting, frying or of course barbecuing.

Southern Fried Chicken

You can buy ‘Ome Made The Chicken Went Down To Georgia here

Of course you don’t have to use our seasoning. There are plenty of recipes out there for you to make your own or use your favourite shop bought.

If you don’t fancy frying the chicken first you can of course just bake it in the oven, it won’t be quite as crispy though and it quite often goes a little soggy on the bottom. It still tastes great though!

Cook More Than You Need!

We always cook more SFC than what we need. Cold SFC is perfect sliced and put in a wrap with a drizzle of hot sauce and mayonnaise or just with a bit of salad. Perfect for The Kids school pack up.

What To Serve Your Chicken With.

I like to serve Southern Fried Chicken with either chips and salad or savoury rice and salad, with mayonnaise or even garlic mayo.

Occasionally I will use boneless chicken breasts, sliced in half through the middle, so they’re not too thick, for SFC. These go great in a bread bun with salad, mayonnaise and hot sauce or ketchup if you want something a bit tamer.

If you like Southern Fried Chicken you may enjoy this easy recipe for spicy beef chilli

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Slow Roasted Lamb Moroccan Style

One of our favourite meals in the ‘Ome Made household is slow roasted lamb Moroccan style. Lamb shoulder coated with a warming, earthy Moroccan rub.

Keep It Local!

We are lucky in Sheffield that we have so many places to buy superb locally reared lamb. Two of our favourites are Firs Farm and Whirlow Hall Farm.

Why Lamb Shoulder?

Lamb shoulder is superb for slow roasting on a low heat. Because the shoulder joint is fattier than the leg, it stays lovely and moist. The fat renders down to nothing and helps flavour the meat. After a 6 – 8 hour cook you are left with a piece of meat that is literally falling from the bone!

Add a marinade or rub to the cooking process and you end up with a incredibly tasty meal!

Variations

Don’t feel that you have to follow this recipe to the letter.

At the most basic all you need is some ‘Ome Made Moroccan Rub-a-Dub-Rub, or your own mix of spices, rubbed on to a piece of lamb which you put in a roasting pan, cover with foil and roast on a low heat for 6 hours.

However the more you put in to it the more layers of flavour you will get.

Also if you are using ‘Ome Made Moroccan rub it uses very little salt so you may want to season to your own taste. There is also very little chilli heat in the rub so if you don’t like things to hot don’t worry you will be fine. And if you do like heat? well pile in some extra chilli!

How to serve

Our favourite way of serving slow roasted Moroccan lamb is with Mediterranean flatbreads, Turkish Salad, yoghurt & mint or Tzatziki and a generous splash of ‘Ome Made Chilli Sauce!

However it could be served with cous cous, savoury rice, tabbouleh or even part of a more Traditional Sunday Roast.

For The Recipe Of Slow Roasted Lamb Moroccan Style Click Here

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Pulled Pork. How To Do It & Make Chilli With The Leftovers!

Pulled Pork… I do like cooking meat the low and slow method. It allows you to play around with so many flavours and you also get the rest of the day free! You also get to make great food with the leftovers. Read on for a great Pulled Pork Chilli!

Pulled pork is no exception. It can be done on the BBQ, in the oven or in a slow cooker.

Although I would prefer to cook pork for pulling on the BBQ, the British weather isn’t always ideal and I’m not one for ducking in and out of the rain just for a piece of meat!

So what is the best cut of pork for Pulled Pork? Most people will be able to get a piece of shoulder from their local butcher or supermarket and this is fine for the job. Make sure you take the rind off and cook that separately for some crackling! However the best piece of pork, if you can get hold of it, is a cut referred to as Boston Butt! This is the American name for the cut, however in good old Blighty it is called pork crop. Ask your local butcher, they may just oblige!

Pork crop for pulled pork rubbed with 'Ome Made BBQ rub from www.omemade.co.uk
Pork crop or Boston Butt rubbed with ‘Ome Made BBQ Rub-a-Dub-Rub

We are lucky to have a pig farmer just around the corner from us. Their pork is sublime. If you are in the Sheffield area you really should try and get hold of some. They are Moss Valley Fine Meats if you want to look them up.

So now you have your meat you need to decide how to flavour it. Most people will opt for a traditional BBQ flavour. In this cook I used ‘Ome Made BBQ Rub-a-Dub-Rub to rub on to the pork before it was cooked. If you can do this the day before it will help the flavours penetrate the meat. You could opt for other flavours. In the past I’ve done it Chinese style and of course South American flavours work brilliantly.

Now you need to decide how to cook it. I’m not going to talk about cooking it on the BBQ in this post, I’ll save that for another time!

To cook in a slow cooker simply put in the slow cooker with a little liquid. Apple Juice works well. For a kilo piece of pork you will be looking at 4.5 to 5 hours. Personally I would finish it off in the oven with a glaze of BBQ sauce or some apple juice, maple syrup or honey and a splash of bourbon!

To cook pulled pork in the oven you want the oven temperature to be 120°C – 125°C. Place your pork in a roasting pan. Place a little baking sheet or greaseproof over the meat, if you have it, and then cover the roasting pan with tinfoil, crimping to the edges to create a seal. for 1kg meat you are probably looking at around 4 hours. For 2kg about 5.5 hours cooking covered. after this time you need to uncover the meat. Take the meat out of the pan and drain off the juices then put the meat back in the pan. Turn the oven up to around 160°C – 165°C. you can now baste the meat with whatever you want. I used a mixture of apple juice, maple syrup and bourbon. Put back in the oven and every 20 minutes or so give it a baste. You could baste with BBQ sauce, Sweet Chilli Sauce or even reduce the cooking juices down with a bit of dark sugar or honey a little vinegar and soya sauce and use that. after an hour or hour and half if you have a larger joint the meat should be ready. Carefully take the pork out of the roasting tin and wrap in baking or greaseproof paper and tin foil. the meat now needs to rest for at least 20 minutes after which time you can pull it apart with a couple of forks. You can now add more BBQ Sauce Chilli Sauce or leftover juices to the pork before serving.

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Personally I like to serve it in some bread of some sort, with some pickled veg, cheese, jalapeno chillies and some fries on the side. Awesome! You could serve with some good old ‘Ome Made Baked Beans! Follow the link for the recipe.

Of course the best thing about pulled pork is that it goes a long way and you always end up with leftovers. If you don’t you need to buy a bigger joint!

One of our favourite things to do with the leftovers is a Chilli.

Here’s a simple recipe for a really tasty Pulled Pork Chilli!

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British Indian Restaurant Curry

British Indian Restaurant Curry And how to Make It!

Scroll down for a basic recipe for Curry Base Gravy and how to use it!

Just like any other food curry has it’s trends and opinions on how to make it. In this article we will find out what British Indian Restaurant Curry is and how to reproduce it in your own home.

I have been following the trend for British Indian Restaurant (BIR) style curries for many years, starting in the 90’s when Pat Chapman started his series of books. Recently Dan Toombs, Misty Ricardo and a handful of other curry aficionados have taken over the mantle.

The British Indian Restaurant style of cooking curry relies on the use of a basic curry powder and a special ‘mix powder’ as well as the use of a ‘base curry sauce’.

 

Base Curry Sauce

The base curry sauce is basically a thin type of stock/soup. Onions, garlic and ginger are sautéed in a pan before a little spice is added. Carrot and peppers are often added along with fresh coriander stalks and I’ve even seen cabbage added, in fact I’ve used it myself!

The problem I have with the British Indian Restaurant Curry method is that;

1, it usually relies on cooking base sauces and ingredients in bulk and then freezing in portions.

2, it’s best cooking one or two main dishes at a time as it relies on high heat to reduce the base sauce quickly and caramelise in the pan. this is difficult to achieve if like me you are cooking for a family of six (even more if I’m cooking extra for another day!). Also do you want to spend the rest of the night cleaning your cooker top after curry has spat everywhere? I mean it’s bad enough when I just normally cook!

If you’re cooking for just yourself or two people and you haven’t got Kids to look after, the second point may not bother you too much, in fact, I remember those days! If that’s the case you can find some great recipes online. Here’s a couple places to get started:

 

Curry Personalities

Romain at Glebe Kitchen has some amazing recipes. Easy to follow and explains every stage in detail but without the process sounding like you need a science degree to put some food on the table!

Misty Ricardo has some great recipes on his You Tube channel, or check out his books on Amazon.

Dan Toombs also has some great recipes on his website and again he has a few great books out.

Julian Voigt is somebody else that is worth having a look at. Again he posts lots of ‘how to’ videos on You Tube.

You could also check out The Curry Secret on Facebook.

However If you are like me, sometimes you just can’t be bothered to follow a recipe, and personally I don’t think it’s necessary, if you remember the basics.

And I think the most important thing is that there is no right or wrong way of doing things providing you are getting great end results!

 

‘Ome Made Curry Masalas

 

I have just started selling a group of spice blends that are perfect for Indian cuisine, whether you are making traditional dishes or going down the British Indian Restaurant curry route. They are Madras Curry Masala, BIR Curry Masala, Garam Masala and Tandoori Masala.

 

 

British Indian Restaurant Curry masalas available from www.omemade.co.uk

 

The BIR Curry Masala is a cheeky little thing. I’ve combined the ingredients you would normally find in a standard curry powder (minus the copious amounts of salt, flour and all the other fillers it would have) and added extra spices that would make up the Indian Restaurants ‘special mix’. Obviously they would add more or less of the curry powder and mix depending on the dish but I have found this is a pretty happy medium and we’ve had fantastic results with it when I was trialling it at ‘ome. 

Obviously there are plenty of standard curry powders out there for you to try and it’s really easy to find out what the basics are of a BIR ‘special mix’ powder are if you want to make your own. Or you could just use a standard curry powder without the extra spice mix.

 

Back To Base!

 

Now on to the Base Curry Sauce.

If I have the time I do, nowadays, make one.

Do I follow a recipe? No. I don’t always have everything that ‘should’ go in to it so sometimes you just have to go with what you have.

Oh, and here’s a tip. If you really can’t be bothered with making a base sauce try using one of those fresh, chilled Carrot & Coriander soups you find at the supermarket. Never done it myself but I’ve read it gives great results! I have also just developed a Curry Bouillon which is a dried blend of onions & vegetables. This is simply fried for a few seconds before adding water and simmering for 10 minutes. You then have a curry stock which you can add to your curry or use as a substitute for base gravy if you haven’t had the time to make one or you’ve emptied your freezer supply!

So, even though I don’t use a recipe myself, here’s two recipes for a base sauce! If you haven’t got some of the ingredients leave them out or replace with something else. See this recipe as a starting point, adapt and customise it how you will and to your taste. It’s the best way!

The first recipe is a bit more complex. The second is about as basic as it comes and you should be able to memorise it after a few goes. If I was honest I use the second one more than the first!

 

Base curry sauce No. 1

 

Makes enough for approximately 12 portions of curry. It will keep in the fridge for 3 days or can be frozen. if you don’t want to make so much just halve the ingredients.

Ingredients;

  • 3 tablespoons oil (sunflower, rapeseed, vegetable)
  • 4 medium onions, sliced
  • 8 fat cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1″ cube of ginger, chopped
  • 2 heaped teaspoons mild/medium curry powder/masala
  • 1 red pepper (or any other coloured pepper!)
  • 1 medium sized carrot
  • coriander stalks (if you have them, basically if you are using fresh coriander to finish your curry off cut off the stalks now to add to your base!)
  • big dollop of tomato paste (you could use a squirt of tomato sauce if you don’t have any)
  • 2 litre of water, ideally hot from the kettle.
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of sugar/jaggery/palm sugar
  • optional extras; few fresh tomatoes, white cabbage, extra peppers, a little coconut powder (or coconut milk or creamed coconut)
  •  

Method.

 

Heat the oil in a pan and add your onion. fry gently for 10 minutes before adding your garlic and ginger, fry for a couple minutes more. Add the curry masala/powder and fry for a minute or so. If it’s sticking add a splash of water. Now add your carrot and peppers and give a stir around. Add the tomato paste and cook for  20 seconds or so. Add the water and bring to a simmer. Now add the coriander stalks and cook gently for at least an hour (and up to 2 hours). If it’s starting to look a bit thick or the liquid is disappearing just add some more water.

 

British Indian Restaurant Curry Base Sauce

 

Once all the veg is soft you need to puree the sauce. The best way to do that is with am immersion/stick blender. It can be done in a blender but let it cool a little and don’t overfill!

Once your sauce is blended it needs to cook for 30 – 60 minutes more. it should be the consistency of a thin soup.

 

British Indian Restaurant Curry Base Sauce

Base Curry Sauce N0. 2

This is a handy one for us as it does enough for 6, exactly the number of people in our household! It can be doubled up and again it will keep in the fridge for three days or you can freeze it.

Ingredients

  • 4tbsp of oil
  • 3 large onions, sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 inch cubed piece of fresh ginger
  • 3 tsp ‘Ome Made B.I.R Curry Masala (or another curry masala or 1 tsp each of ground cumin, coriander & turmeric)
  • 1.2 ltr water
  • a handful of coriander stalks (if you have them)
  • 1 x 400ml tin of tomatoes (chopped or whole as they get blitzed)

Method

1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Once hot add the onions and salt and gently fry for 10 minutes or until
the onions are starting to soften.
2. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for a couple more minutes
3. Add the curry Masala or spices, along with a splash of water. Give a quick stir and mix and then
pour in the water
4. Bring to the simmer and cook for 45 minutes, lid off
5. Add the tinned tomatoes and coriander stalks
6. Bring back to the simmer and cook for another 30 minutes
7. Take the pan off the heat and blitz with an immersion blender until you have a smooth sauce
8. Put back on a low heat ready for adding to your curry. If it looks a little thick add some water. It
should be slightly thicker than full fat milk.
9. Use in a curry recipe as directed.


Notes


I have made this sauce in less time than it says, giving it 30 minutes before adding the tomatoes and
coriander and then cooking for only another 20 minutes. It was still good!
Of course you could fry your ingredients off and then add to a pressure cooker or soup maker along with all
the other ingredients and it will still be just as good. Just follow the cooking times for a soup.
This base works really well in a curry when you use the method of adding diluted tomato paste to you
cooked out spices. For 4 people use 2 tbsp of tomato puree diluted in 300ml of boiling water. Add this to
your curry when you have fried your onion, garlic, ginger and spices and let it reduce down so you’re left
with a thick paste. Then you can start adding your base sauce as normal.

Basic Medium Curry British Indian Restaurant Style.

serves approximately 4

Ingredients.

  • 2 tablespoon of oil (not olive) or ghee
  • 1 1/2 medium onions, roughly chopped
  • 4 fat cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • small piece of ginger (to taste) roughly chopped
  • 4 heaped teaspoons curry masala/powder
  • a half portion of Base sauce No. 1 or all or nearly all of base sauce No. 2 
  • 600g of your main ingredient  (uncooked chicken, lamb, vegetable, prawns etc)
  • fresh coriander, chopped
  • a pinch of garam masala or grind of black pepper
  • salt to taste

Method

Blitz your chopped onion, garlic and ginger in a food processor, grinder or blender (you may have to add a little water to help) to make a paste. If you haven’t got a food processor you could use a pestle and mortar or just chop finely. 

Heat the oil in a pan and add the onion paste, careful as it may spit a little. Fry the paste gently for 10 minutes or so, don’t worry it will probably turn green!

Fring onions for a British Indian Restaurant Curry

Add the curry masala/powder and cook gently, if it is sticking add a splash of water, a little at a time. You want the spices to ‘cook out’ the oil will start to split from the paste when this happens and the mixture will spit in little eruptions.

Now add your main ingredient and give it a good stir. Add just enough base sauce to just cover the main ingredients and simmer gently until cooked, if it’s looking a little dry add more sauce. once your chicken, lamb or whatever is just cooked turn the heat up and add more of the base sauce a little at a time until you have your desired consistency. If it’s to thick add a little water. Add the chopped coriander and season to taste with garam masala or pepper and salt.

British Indian Restaurant Chicken Curry with Dall, Rice & Naan bread

 

And that’s it! not exactly BIR style but good enough to give your favourite Indian restaurant a run for their money!

Once you have the basics it’s easy to tweak a recipe to make a lot of different dishes.

There’s some variations you can follow further down the page. Keep Checking Back as I will keep updating and adding recipes and ideas.

 

Tandoori

The ‘Ome Made Tandoori Masala can be used to make your favourite Tandoori and Tikka dishes.

If you just wanted something quick you can literally rub a little of the Masala in to some chicken, prawns or whatever you fancy before grilling, frying or barbecuing.

For a simple tandoori or tikka marinade just add some of the masala to plain yoghurt to coat your main ingredient.

If you want to go the whole hog, fry roughly 1 heaped teaspoon of Tandoori Masala per 200g of main ingredient (chicken, king prawn, lamb, paneer etc.) in a little oil. This then needs adding to some plain natural yoghurt (Greek yoghurt is fine).

For four people you want roughly 800g of main ingredient and 250g of yoghurt.

If you want a truly authentic flavour add a splash of lemon or lime juice, a teaspoon of grated garlic and ginger, some chopped chilli and coriander. You may want to season with salt and pepper or Garam Masala.

‘Ome Made Tandoori Masala has some beetroot powder in it to give it a slightly more reddish colour but it won’t be the vibrant, garish red that you get in an Indian restaurant. If you want that you need to add a small amount of red food colouring.

To cook I use the oven on a relatively high temperature. Once your chicken, lamb or whatever is cooked, you may want to just give it a blast under the grill to get those nice charred edges. I actually use a blowtorch. Of course if the weather is good Tandoori and Tikka is great cooked over charcoal on the BBQ!

 

Madras Curry British Indian Restaurant Style

This is as simple as it gets for a British Indian restaurant style Madras curry!

Follow the Basic Medium Curry above to frying the onion, garlic, ginger and spices. Once you have done this add the following;

400g chopped tinned tomatoes (blitz smooth in a blender or food processor if you want a restaurant style curry)

2 Tablespoons Tomato Puree

Cook this for a couple minutes then add your main ingredient. Add a little water or base sauce to thin the sauce a little then leave to cook.

Once your main ingredient is nearly cooked you need to add the coriander, garam masala, salt and the following;

1 tablespoon ground almonds

2 tablespoons of lemon juice, fresh is best but bottled will be fine

3 teaspoons of sugar

2 – 3 teaspoon of chilli powder.

Cook for another 15 – 20 minutes before serving. Simple!

Ceylon Curry British Indian Restaurant Style

Again follow the above Basic Medium Curry recipe. go easy on the base sauce as you are adding more liquid later.

once your main ingredient is nearly cooked add the following;

1/3 of a block of creamed coconut (i usually grate it straight in t the pan) or 3 tablespoons of coconut milk powder

150ml of milk

1 tablespoon of lemon juice, ideally fresh but bottled will work as well.

1 – 4 fresh green chillies chopped (or more or less to suit your taste)

cook for a couple of minutes before adding the garam masala, salt and fresh coriander and cooking for another 15 minutes or so before serving.

Again once you have mastered the basic recipe for a curry you should be seeing now how easy it is to tweak it and make lots of variations.

Chicken Karahi

Ok, this is another easy adaptation to a basic medium curry.

To me Karahi is about the lovely fresh taste of ginger along with some nice fresh peppers and tomatoes. I usually add fresh chillies as well. To be fair when you add fresh chillies this dish is virtually indistinguishable from a Jalfrezi so this is almost a two in one curry!

So follow the recipe for medium chicken curry above EXCEPT add more fresh ginger. You want a piece roughly as big as your thumb. Also add a teaspoon of turmeric powder and 1 teaspoon of chilli powder (more if you like it hotter) when you add your curry masala.

about 15 minutes before you’re ready to dish up add some chopped peppers (1 red, 1 green or whatever you have), 4 tomatoes cut in to quarters and some optional fresh chillies, and of course the chopped fresh coriander.

I’d love to see and hear about your own variations. Remember to post your creations on my Facebook page – www.facebook.com/omemade or Twitter account @Omemade

Remember to keep checking back here as I will add more recipes!

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Get Fuggled… Ketchup! Made With Real Ale!

Real Ale in ‘Ome Made products from Fuggle Bunny Brew House of Sheffield.

Fuggle chutney and sauces 1

 

 

As a Christmas special in 2015 I made a Fruity Chocolate Stout Chutney. It was going to be a one off but proved so popular that I thought I would do something similar as a mainstay. After all Real Ale is very popular at the moment!

And then I started thinking… “what else can I make with beer?” So I decided to do a Ketchup and a Brown Sauce as well as a Chutney.

So I started looking for a local brewery. A brewery that had the right credentials to suit the ‘Ome Made brand and of course, made really good beer!

I came across a brewery based in Sheffield, Fuggle Bunny Brew House, who seemed to fit the bill. I approached them with my ideas and they were interested in what I had to offer. So off I went to see them and, of course, sample some beer.

 

I have to say I was welcomed by two of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet… Fuggle bunny Brew House owners Wendy and Dave. They let me sample the beers they had on and I have to say it was some of the finest real ale I have ever tasted!

So that decided it. I had found my brewery!

Fuggle logo

For the Fruity Fuggle Chutney I used the Jammy Dodger Ale a ruby red ale with fruity undertones.

fruity fuggle chutney

 

 

The Stout Brown Sauce uses Russian Rare-Bit Stout. A lovely quaffable stout with flavours of chocolate and coffee… Good stuff!

 

stout brown sauce

 

 

 

 

For the Summer Haze Ketchup I found the perfect beer, Lazy Hazy Summer Daze. A light and refreshing ale with subtle fruit flavours… Fantastic! One of those beers that on a hot summer day you can just ‘neck!’. It gives the tomato ketchup a lovely fruity flavour with just a hint of hoppiness.

 

 

summer haze ketchup

 

The new products are available to buy from the brewery themselves… follow the link here: www.fugglebunnybrewhouse.co.uk to find out more about the brewery and their selection of fine real ales.

You can read about the ‘Ome Made products on Fuggle Bunnys Blog here

They will also be available from the ‘Ome Made Store.

Watch out for ‘Ome Made at a market near you. You will then be able to sample the Fuggle Bunny range along with the rest of the ‘Ome Made range.

You can catch ‘Ome Made at Norton Farmers Market on April 23rd 2016 and Fuggle Bunny Brew House will be at Barlborough Country Fair on April 30th 2016.

 

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‘Ome Made… Online Store!

  At long last it’s here.

You’ve been asking for it… I promised it and finally it’s here!

You can now buy fantastic ‘Ome Made products at The ‘Ome Made… Online Store!

www.omemade.co.uk.

Online orders can be made, paid through the PayPal gateway and delivered to your door by ACP courier or Royal Mail. If your local you can even opt to pick your goods up and pay no delivery fee!

There has been some changes to this website too. You may have noticed that the layout has changed and some photos disappeared! Well the photos are slowly been put back and some nifty new features are going to be making an appearance such as new and improved recipe posts.

So please go and have a gander at the store and remember to like and share on Facebook and Twitter and spread the word!

Keep an eye out for some promotional codes too for some special discounts!

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Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast

 

 

Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast… this was an absolute winner!

I’m quite a fan of lamb breast, a very underused and under rated cut of meat.

I think a lot of people are put off by the appearance (there appears to be very little meat) and they don’t know how to cook it.

Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast I normally roll it with a nice stuffing to soak up the juices and make it go a bit further.

On this occasion I remembered seeing a recipe where the breast was cooked without being rolled so that it went nice and crispy, so I thought I’d give it a go with a nice spicy coating.

‘Ome Made Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast.

We were not disappointed! I used three lamb breasts which did me, Kit and the four hungry Kids and then there was some leftover for lunches.

It does reheat really well and goes even crispier!

The recipe below is for one lamb breast so double it for two or treble for three… There’s nothing like stating the obvious is there, sorry!

Lamb breast needs to be cooked slow to render the fat down and give you tender meat so this was cooked in two stages the first with the marinated meat cooked in a low oven, wrapped in tinfoil. The oven temperature was then turned up and the lamb finished off uncovered.

 

Before you cook the lamb breast you need to remove the thin bit of film that covers the inside of the ribs as it tends to be a bit tough. If your not confident about doing this ask the butcher to do it.

Talking of ribs the breast can be cooked with or without them.

Our Kids love the ribs when they are removed after the meat is cooked!

As far as flavourings you could use any mixture you like. I stuck with cumin, which goes fabulously with lamb, chilli and garlic as the main focus.

Of course you could use a ready bought mixture from the shop such as Ras el Hanout or of course any of the ‘Ome Made seasonings and rubs which are available at www.omemade.co.uk.

‘Ome Mades Moroccan Rub-a-Dub-Rub would be ideal for this recipe.

 

Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast 

1 Lamb breast

splash of lemon juice

2 cloves of garlic crushed

2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon chilli powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

lots of ground black pepper

A little oil of your choosing

Prepare the lamb breast removing the film and any big lumps of fat. lightly score the meat (SEVERRRN!… Sorry!) and any fat to help the marinade penetrate the lamb. Splash a little lemon juice over the lamb and rub in. Put the crushed garlic, spices and seasoning in a bowl and add enough oil to make a paste. Cover the Lamb Breast with the paste and give it a good rub in. leave to marinate in the fridge for up to 24 hours if you have the time, however the meat can be cooked straight away and still taste good! When ready to cook wrap the lamb breast in a couple pieces of tin foil and place in a roasting dish. Place in a preheated oven at 145°C/125°C Fan for around 3 hours.

 

After this time the meat should be cooked and tender and the soft fat will have rendered down giving incredibly moist, tasty lamb.

Turn your oven up to 200°C/180°C Fan.

Remove the lamb from the tin foil and place on a wire rack (if possible, will be fine if not) in a roasting pan.

Once the oven has come up to temperature put the meat back in. After 15 minutes turn the meat over and leave for another 10 – 15 minutes or until you have a nice crispy finish to your lamb.

Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast

 

Remove from the oven and let rest for 15- 20 minutes before slicing into strips to serve.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We served the crispy strips of lamb breast with some mashed potato and garlicky sautéed cabbage… Winner!

 

 


Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast

Don’t forge to check out the range of ‘Ome Made rubs & seasonings at our online shop; www.omemade.co.uk

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Portuguese One Pot Chicken.

 

It was a Saturday. Something strange had happened. I fancied something other than curry for tea! Not sure Kit was so impressed with this idea!

However not all was lost…

I still wanted that hit of spice!

We were going to be having curry. We had bought 3 chickens especially. To be honest I think the thought of taking the meat off 3 birds was not appealing to me on this particular day. I think a bout of ‘Can’t be arsed’ had come over me!

As well as three chickens I had also put a load of chickpeas into soak the night before so I had to incorporate those in some way.

I had been making some seasonings a couple days previously and knew that I had some surplus ‘Ome Made Portuguese Rub-a-Dub-Rub. And that was all the inspiration I needed! “One Pot Portuguese Chicken”.

 

 

One Pot Portuguese Chicken

This really is a simple recipe and whilst it’s cooking you can go about and enjoy your day rather than slaving over a hot stove.

You don’t have to use three chickens! The recipe below is for one. You can also use whatever vegetables you fancy.

You will need;

  • One Large Chicken
  • 165g dried chick peas (soaked overnight, boiled for 10 minutes and drained)
  • 4 large potatoes quartered
  • 4 large carrots cut into chunks
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • 2 bulbs garlic chopped
  • roughly 120g mushrooms sliced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ‘Ome Made Portuguese Rub-a-Dub-Rub (or Piri-Piri seasoning or mix up a little paprika, cumin and chilli) mixed with a little oil to make a paste.
  • Roughly 1 1/2 litres chicken Stock (you could use a little less and add a glass of red wine or as we did a splash of Port!)
  • 4 tomatoes chopped
  • Big handful of fresh coriander chopped
  • Seasoning to taste

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Method

Take a large roasting pan or anything oven proof that all your ingredients will fit in. Put all the ingredients except the chicken, spice mix, stock, tomatoes and coriander in your roasting pan. pour over the stock so that it almost but not quite covers your vegetables.

Rub the spice mixture all over your chicken and place it on top of your vegetables. Cover the whole pan with a couple layers of tin foil and place in a preheated oven at 170°C/150°C fan/gas mark 3 for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

Take out of the oven. Turn the oven up to 220°C/200°C Fan/ Gas Mark 7. Remove the tin foil and stir in the tomato and fresh coriander. Check for seasoning. Place the pan back in the oven for approximately 30 minutes for the chicken skin to crisp and colour a little.

Remove from the oven and let sit for twenty minutes. The chicken will just fall off the bone. Try serving with some steamed rice and some good crusty bread.

Bao saúde