How to cook… Prawn Phall

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

The Phall is the hottest curry you’ll find in most restaurants and many do not even put it on their menu. Prawn Phall is great because the shellfish really soaks up the hot juices. Well, you wanted hot didn’t you?

What you need…
• Small knob of butter
• 800g prawns, shelled and deveined
• 2 Tablespoons ghee
• 1 Tablespoon black peppercorns
• 3 dried red chillies
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 600ml Base Curry Sauce
• 2 Tablespoons tomato ketchup
• 1 Tablespoon garam masala
• Salt to taste

Spice Mix
• 1 Tablespoon mild curry powder
• 2 Tablespoons chopped chilli pickle
• 4 teaspoons chilli powder


How to make it…
1. Heat the butter to a medium heat. While it is heating up mix the Spice Mix with the vinegar and enough water to form a sloppy paste.
2. Add the prawns to the butter and stir fry until they are pink. This should take about 2 minutes. Remove the prawns from the pan and set aside.
3. Heat the ghee to a high heat. While it is heating up mix the Spice Mix with enough water to form a sloppy paste.
4. Add the peppercorns and chillies and fry for 15 seconds. They should sizzle immediately. You can test the ghee is hot enough by adding one peppercorn.
5. Add the garlic paste and cook for 1 minute on a lower heat. You may have to remove the pan from the heat initially to stop the paste burning. (If it burns then throw it away and start again.)
6. Add the Spice Mix and cook for 2 minutes. It should now be thick and gloopy.
7. Add the Base Curry Sauce and the tomato and cook for 2 minutes.
8. Add the garam masala, salt and cook for 5 minutes.
9. Add the prawns and continue cooking until they are warmed though and fully cooked (about 3–4 minutes)..

CHEF’S TIP
Avoid water when eating a phall. Try a lassi instead as it’ll cool your mouth better.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken DopiazaAmbot Tik

Heard someone they can eat these easily? It’s a phallacy.

How to cook… Grandma’s Beef Curry

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

This is a classic 1960s-style ‘curry’ just like British grandmas used to make. The first recipe for “Indian Currey” appeared in English cookbooks in the 18th century and the Hindoostane Coffee House, considered to be the nation’s first curry restaurant, opened in London in 1810. But it’s unlikely the average British households had many spices in their cupboard till many years after that. When they did bravely venture into the world of Indian cooking it’s likely to have been a generic curry powder that found its way to a place next to the more common staples. Adventurous grandmas would have simply added a couple of spoonfuls of this spice mix to a beef stew along with other exotic (at the time) ingredients such as coconut, sultanas and chutney for sweetness. Hey presto! Grandma’s Beef Curry. Of course, beef is not found in too many parts of India, but that would have escaped many of these cooks. Just adding the curry powder was enough at this stage.

What you need…
• 600g stewing beef, cut into bite-sized pieces
• 2 Tablespoons flour
• 1 Tablespoon oil
• 1 large knob of butter
• 1 cooking apple (or 2 Granny Smith apples), peeled and cored, and cut into chunks of about 1.5cm
• 2 onions, chopped
• 2 tablespoons cornflour, mixed with water to make a thin paste
• 2 Tablespoons curry powder
• 2 tomatoes, chopped
• 400ml beef stock
• 1 Tablespoon brown sauce
• Salt to taste
• Pepper to taste
• 2 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks of about 4cm
• 1 Tablespoon desiccated coconut
• 2 Tablespoons sultanas
• 1 Tablespoon sweet chutney (optional)


How to make it
1. Heat the oil to a medium-high heat in a pan. While it is heating coat the beef in flour. Once the pan is ready add the beef and cook until all the pieces are sealed (about 4–5 minutes). Remove the beef from the pan and set aside.
2. Turn down the heat and add the butter. Once it’s melted add the onion and apple and cook gently until everything has softened (about 8 minutes).
3. Add the cornflour mix and curry powder and keep stirring for 3 minutes. Add a splash of water to stop it sticking if needed.
4. Add the beef (with any juices), tomatoes, stock, brown sauce, salt, pepper and potatoes and mix well. Cover the pan and cook for on a low heat for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
5. Add the coconut, sultanas and chutney, mix well and continue cooking, uncovered for 10 minutes. The beef should be soft and the ‘curry’ thickened.
6. Add a sprinkle of coconut and a few sultanas to garnish and serve.

CHEF’S TIP
This is what many people in Britain would have experienced as their first taste of a curry. Don’t temped to add more spices.
Grandma’s Beef Curry would have been seen as exotic in many British households in the 1960s.

If you like this you should try our
Ambot TikChilli ChickenChilli PaneerButter ChickenMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken Vindaloo Restaurant-style)Chicken BhoonaChicken Recheade

Check out 5 Best Goa Curries

What do you sing after getting served this dish. “Grandma, I love you!”

How to cook… Balti Aphrodisiac

Recipes

Makes 2 baltis (Cook them independently in 2 balti bowls – putting half the ingredients into each – if you can).

In the balti boom years there was a popular restaurant in Birmingham’s Balti Triangle called the Sher Khan run by Jimmy, a cheeky chappy Pakistani lad who had charisma and charm in abundance. The restaurant was decked out more in the style of the Bangladeshi places, with ornate wooden booths, flock wallpaper – all dark and mysterious. Jimmy’s place served a dish called Balti Aphrodisiac, which only added to the intrigue and enigma of the Sher Khan. The original recipe was allegedly a closely guarded secret, so secret in fact that the Sher Khan chef would only prepare it at home! This recipe is packed with heady spices for maximum potency and balanced beautifully with coconut. Perfect for Valentine’s Day as this is truly a very tasty balti! 

What you need…
• 3 Tablespoons coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
• 400g chicken, diced (not too big to ensure a fast cooking time)
• 2 small onions, finely chopped
• 1 large tomato, grated (use a free-standing cheese grater or if you don’t have one cut the tomato into tiny chunks)


• 2 teaspoons fresh red chillies, chopped
• 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
• 1 Tablespoon garlic paste
• 1 Tablespoon ginger paste
• 2 Tablespoons garam masala
• 4 pinches of salt
• 1 teaspoon cardamon seeds, freshly ground
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, freshly ground
• 2 teaspoons turmeric
• 2 teaspoons ground fenugreek
• 10 Tablespoons of Base Curry Sauce
• 6 Tablespoons of coconut milk
• Water as required (to stop the pan from sticking)
• 2 tablespoons coriander, freshly chopped, to garnish
• 2 tablespoons pistachio nuts, crushed, to garnish

How to make it
1. Heat coconut oil in balti bowl until sizzling, add the onion and tomato and cook until onions are translucent (about 3–4 minutes).
2. Add the chillies, fresh ginger and garlic and ginger pastes, stir well, then add the cardamom, cumin, turmeric, fenugreek, a splash of water and fry for 3 minutes.
3. Add the chicken and quickly seal (about 1 minute).
4. Add the garam masala and the salt and cook until the chicken is nearly cooked (about 5–7 minutes).
5. Add the Base Curry Sauce, mix well, add in the coconut milk and cook until your chicken is fully cooked and the edges of your balti become caramelised (about 3–4 minutes) Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
6. Garnish with fresh coriander and broken pistachio nuts and serve with naan bread (serve your naan with a drizzle of light honey and a sprinkle of freshly crushed pistachio nuts).
Recipe courtesy of the Birmingham Balti Co. To buy authentic Balti bowls click here.
• For more about balti see our interview with expert Andy Munro.

CHEF’S TIP
Throughout the cooking process ensure you stir frequently and add small splashes of water to avoid the dish sticking and drying out.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Dopiaza

How do phone mad couples get married? They give each other a ring.

How to cook… Piment Frire

Recipes

Makes 4

You’ll find street food sellers offering these Piment Frire (Chilli Poppers) all over Mauritius. These deliciously hot snacks are perfect to eat on the go or you can eat them with a chutney or pickle of your choice. For tuna-stuffed chilli poppers see Piment Farci au Thon.

What you need…
• 4 large chilli peppers (you can cut a small slit and empty out the seeds if you don’t like them too hot)
• Cold water
• Salt
• 100g self-raising flour
• 50g gram flour (this is chickpea flour, also called besan flour)
• 8 Tablespoons oil

How to make it
1. Soak the peppers in the water with a pinch of salt for 10 minutes. Dry them and set aside.
2. Mix the self-raising flour and besan flour with a pinch of salt and enough water to create a thick paste.
3. Dip the peppers in the flour batter so they are all well coated.
4. Heat the oil in a shallow pan to a high heat and, using a slotted spoon, drop the chilli peppers into the oil until they turn a deep yellow and the batter is fully fried (about 2–3 minutes). Turn the peppers while they are frying to ensure they are evenly cooked. Depending on the size of your pan you may need to cook these in a couple of batches.
5. The chillies are obviously very hot when they come out of the oil so allow them to cool slightly before eating!

CHEF’S TIP
Try these with our Tomato & Chilli Chutney.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Dopiaza

The large chilli asks his friend “why are you shaking?” “Because I’m a litle chilli,” comes the reply

How to cook… Piment Farci au Thon

Recipes

Makes 4

Piment Farci au Thon (Chillies Stuffed with Tuna) is popular street food or a snack that is often served at parties. These chilli poppers are sometimes stuffed with pieces of chicken or just cooked in batter without stuffing (see Piment Frire).

What you need…
• 4 large chilli peppers
• Cold water
• Two pinches of salt
• 100g self-raising flour
• 50g gram flour (this is chickpea flour, also called besan flour)
• 150g tuna, shredded
• 1 Tablespoon coriander, finely chopped
• 1 spring onion, finely chopped
• 8 Tablespoons oil

How to make it
1. Slice the peppers open to form a pocket. Remove the seeds if you don’t want them too hot. Soak them in the water with a pinch of salt for 10 minutes. Dry them and set aside.
2. Mix the self-raising flour and besan flour with a pinch of salt and enough water to create a thick paste.
3. Mix the tuna, coriander and spring onion and stuff the peppers with the mixture.
4. Dip the peppers in the flour batter so they are all well coated.
5. Heat the oil in a shallow pan to a high heat and, using a slotted spoon, drop the chilli peppers into the oil until they turn a deep yellow and the batter is fully fried (about 2–3 minutes). Turn the peppers while they are frying to ensure they are evenly cooked. Depending on the size of your pan you may need to cook these in a couple of batches.
6. The chillies are naturally very hot so allow them to cool slightly before eating!

CHEF’S TIP
These can be eaten hot or cold so are ideal for making in advance.
Piment Farci au Thon are Mauritian-style chilli peppers stuffed with tuna.

If you like this you should try our
Ambot TikChilli ChickenChilli PaneerButter ChickenMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken Vindaloo Restaurant-style)Chicken BhoonaChicken Recheade

Check out 5 Best Goa Curries

You love these so much you’ll eat a tun of them.

Chutneys, Pickles & Salads

Recipes
Carrot & Cucumber Salad
• 1 carrot, shredded
• 0.5 cucumber, peeled and shredded
• 1 chilli, chopped
• 3 teaspoons Balsamic vinegar
• Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all the ingredients together.

Onion & Tomato Salad
• 2 onions, sliced
• 1 tomato, sliced
• 1.5 green chillies, chopped
• 8 stalks coriander, chopped
• 5 Tablespoons olive oil
• 0.5 teaspoon salt
• 0.5 teaspoon black pepper

Mix all the ingredients together.


Coriander & Chilli Chutney
• 1 clove garlic, chopped
• 1 small bunch coriander, chopped
• 2 tomatoes, chopped
• 3 chillies, chopped
• 1 teaspoon salt

Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend to a rough, thick paste. Don’t blend it too much or the chutney will be too runny.

Cucumber Yoghurt
• 0.5 cucumber, peeled and cut into small cubes
• 0.5 onion, thinly sliced
• 1 Tablespoon yoghurt
• 0.5 teaspoon chilli flakes
• Pinch of salt
• Few coriander leaves for garnish

Mix all the ingredients together.

Chilli Pickle
• 10 red chillies, chopped
• 10 green chillies, chopped
• 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 3 Tablespoons oil
• Pinch of salt
• Pinch of black pepper

Mix all the ingredients together.

Tomato Chutney
• 2 tomatoes
• 2 Tablespoons oil
• 0.25 onion, sliced
• 4 stalks of coriander, chopped
• 1 green chilli, chopped
• 0.5 teaspoon salt

1. Bring a pan of water to the boil and add the tomatoes. After a short time you’ll see the skin starting to crack. Leave the tomatoes for another 15 seconds then remove them, peel off the skin and cut into chunks.
2. Heat the oil to medium heat and add the peeled tomatoes and onions, and cook for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and mash everything using the back of a spoon or a potato masher.
3. Add the rest of the ingredients, mix well and cook for 3 minutes.
4. Allow the chutney to cool before serving.

Mint Yoghurt
• 150ml yoghurt
• 50ml water
• 2 teaspoons mint sauce
• Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all the ingredients together.

Mint & Mango Chutney
• 1 large mango, chopped
• Small handful of mint, chopped
• 2 chillies, chopped
• 1 clove of garlic, peeled and chopped
• Pinch of salt

Add all the ingredients to a blender and mix to a smooth paste.
Mango Chutney
• 1 mango, peeled and chopped
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
• 1 Tablespoon garlic, chopped
• 10 red dried chillies
• 2 teaspoon Vindaye/Achar powder*
• Oil as required
• 1 green chilli to garnish

*If you don’t have Vindaye/Achar powder then dry fry 0.5 teaspoon fenugreek seeds, 0.5 teaspoon mustard seeds and grind. Then add 0.5 teaspoon chilli powder, 0.5 teaspoon turmeric, 0.5 teaspoon ginger powder, 0.5 teaspoon garlic powder)

1. Add the salt to the mango (this will stop it turning brown). Put the mango in a tea towel, fold it over and squeeze out the juice. Spread the apple out on a plate and leave it to dry for an hour, preferably in the sun.
2. Dry fry the fenugreek seeds in a heated pan and grind with the garlic and red chillies.
3. Mix everything together.
4. Heat the oil for a couple of minutes and remove from the heat. Add the apple mix to the oil and warm through for 2 minutes.
5. Put everything into a jar and cover with oil.
6. It is ready to eat immediately but is best left for a day or two. When ready to serve garnish with a green chilli.

Apple Pickle
• 2 apples, cored and chopped but not peeled
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
• 1 Tablespoon garlic, chopped
• 10 red dried chillies
• 2 teaspoon Vindaye/Achar powder*
• Oil as required
• 1 teaspoon tamarind paste

* If you don’t have Vindaye/Achar powder then dry fry 0.5 teaspoon fenugreek seeds, 0.5 teaspoon mustard seeds and grind. Then add 0.5 teaspoon chilli powder, 0.5 teaspoon turmeric, 0.5 teaspoon ginger powder, 0.5 teaspoon garlic powder)

1. Add the salt to the apple (this will stop it turning brown). Put the apple in a tea towel, fold it over and squeeze out the juice. Spread the apple out on a plate or try and leave it to dry, preferably in the sun.
2. Dry fry the fenugreek seeds in a heated pan and grind with the garlic and red chillies.
3. Mix everything together.
4. Heat the oil for a couple of minutes and remove from the heat. Add the apple mix to the oil and warm through for 2 minutes.
5. Put everything into a jar and cover with oil.
6. It is ready to eat immediately but is best left for a day or two.

Piment Carri Frire
• 8 large chillies (piments) with stalks removed and cut in half
• 2 Tablespoons oil
• 1 onion, sliced
• Salt to taste

1. Heat the oil in a pan to a medium heat and fry the chillies for 5 minutes.
2. Add the chillies and continue frying until the chillies brown (about 5–10 minutes).
3. Add salt to taste.

Tomato & Chilli Chutney
• 1 tomato, chopped
• 2 chillies, chopped
• Small handful fresh coriander, chopped
• 1 clove garlic, chopped
• 0.5 teaspoon fine salt

Add all the ingredients to a blender and mix to a rough paste.
Aubergine Chutney
• 1 large aubergine
• 1 garlic clove, cut into 4 slices
• 1 Tablespoon olive oil
• 0.5 onion, finely chopped
• 1 green chilli, chopped
• 2 Tablespoons coriander, chopped
• Slice of lemon, chopped

1. Make four slashes into the aubergine and insert the garlic slivers. Coat the aubergine with oil and heat under a medium-hot grill for 20 minutes, turning frequently. The skin of the aubergine should start to pucker.
2. Once the aubergine is cooked remove it from the grill and remove the skin.
3. Chop up the aubergine and garlic, add in the other ingredients and mix well.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken DopiazaAmbot Tik

How to cook… Marchwangan Korma

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

Korma is either loved (it is one of the favourite restaurant curries) or derided by those who prefer hotter curries. But korma is not just a mild, creamy dish but a style of cooking that means “to braise”, with origins in central Asia. Traditionally this oily, hot Kashmiri korma (yes, they can be hot!) is traditionally cooked with on-the-bone lamb or mutton but chicken works well and requires a lot less cooking time. Pandit Kashmiris (Brahmins) don’t eat onion so Marchwangan Korma is sometimes cooked without it.

What you need…
• 4 Tablespoons ghee
• 800g of chicken, cut into large chunks
• 4 green cardamons, cracked but not crushed
• 6 cloves
• 6cm piece of cinnamon stick
• 2 garlic cloves, sliced
• 1 large red onion, finely chopped
• 1 teaspoon cumin powder
• 1 teaspoon coriander powder
• 2 teaspoons chilli powder
• Salt to taste

Red Marinade
• 1 cooked beetroot, chopped, and 4 Tablespoons of the juice
• 8 red chillies, chopped
• 2 Tablespoons tomato purée
• 1 teaspoon paprika

How to make it
1. Mix the ingredients for the marinade and blend to a fine paste with a little water. Add the chicken and leave to marinade for at least 2 hours but preferably 24 hours.
2. Heat half the ghee in a pan to a high heat and quickly seal the chicken (about 3 minutes). Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
3. Add the rest of the ghee to a high heat and fry the cardamons, cloves and cinnamon stick for 15 seconds. They should sizzle immediately.
4. Turn down the heat, add the garlic cloves and fry for 1 minute.
5. Add the onion and fry until it starts to brown (about 6–7 minutes).
6. Add the cumin, coriander and chilli powder and fry for 2 minutes.
7. Add the Red Marinade and cook for 2 minutes.
8. Turn down the heat to very lower, add the chicken and salt, cover and cook until the chicken is all cooked through (about 15–20 minutes).

CHEF’S TIP
To cook without onion replace with 100ml red wine when you add the Marinade.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken DopiazaAmbot Tik

This curry is red, that much is true, it is so hot, it’ll make you go whooa!

How to cook… Paneer Jalfrezi

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

While Chicken is the favourite version of this popular dish Paneer Jalfrezi is a must try. Cooked with Base Curry Sauce and mixed with different coloured peppers, onions, tomatoes and chillies to create a lovely range of tastes and colours for this favourite restaurant curry

What you need…
• 1 Tablespoon oil
• 1 Tablespoon ghee
• 5 garlic cloves, sliced
• 4 cm chunk of ginger, cut into 2cm matchsticks
• 0.5 red pepper, cut into thin slices
• 0.5 yellow (or green) pepper, cut into thin slices
• 4 green chillies, chopped
• 600g Base Curry Sauce
• 800g paneer, cut into bite-sized pieces
• Small handful fresh coriander (chop up the stems and some of the leaves to add to the curry but set aside a few of leaves for garnish)
• 1 onion, sliced
• 2 tomatoes, cut into segments
• Salt to taste

Spice Mix
• 1 Tablespoon mild curry powder
• 1 teaspoon chilli powder
• 1 teaspoon cumin powder
• 0.5 teaspoon turmeric powder
• 1 teaspoon vinegar


How to make it
1. Heat the oil in pan to a low-medium heat. Add the paneer cubes and fry until they brown. This should take about 3–4 minute. Remove from the pan and set aside.
2. Heat the ghee to a medium heat. While it is heating up mix the Spice Mix with the vinegar and enough water to form a sloppy paste.
3. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 2 minutes.
4. Turn up the heat and add the peppers and chillies and cook for 2 minutes. You will soften the peppers and slightly char it (to mimic the tandoor taste).
4. Turn the heat down and add the Base Curry Sauce and Spice Mix and cook for 2 minutes.
5. Add the chicken and cook for 5 minutes.
6. Add the coriander, onion, tomatoes and salt, and cook for 3 minutes. The pepper, onion and tomato should be just soft but not mushy.
7. Add the paneer and cook for 2 minutes.
8.
Serve, garnished with the coriander leaves.

CHEF’S TIP
You can use shop bought paneer for the crumbliest paneer make your own.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Dopiaza

Which cheeses can fly? Birds of prey.

How to cook… Keema with Coconut

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

A simple dish for mushroom lovers who love a bit of spice in their side dishes. Just add the mushrooms to a little Base Curry Sauce, add plenty of garlic and chilli for this dryish dish.

What you need…
• 2 Tablespoons oil or ghee
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 1 teaspoon ginger paste
• 600g lamb mince
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
• 4 dried red chillies, chopped into large pieces
• 1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
• 5 curry leaves
• 0.5 teaspoon turmeric powder
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• 2 Tablespoons coconut cream
• Salt to taste

Green Paste
• 20 mint leaves
• 3 green chillies, chopped
• 1 Tablespoon desiccated coconut

How to make it
1. Grind the ingredients from the Green Paste into a fine paste. Set aside.
2. Heat 1 Tablespoon oil in a pan to a medium heat and fry the garlic and ginger pastes for 1 minute.
3. Add the mince and fry until it is all browned (about 10 minutes). Remove the mince and set it aside.
4. Add the rest of the oil to a high heat and fry the cumin seeds, mustard seeds and red chillies for 15 seconds. It should sizzle immediately. You can test it is hot enough by dropping in one seed.
5. Turn down the heat to medium, add the onion and fry until it softens (about 5 minutes).
6. Add the curry leaves, turmeric and garam masala with a little water and fry for 3 minutes.
7. Add the Green Paste and cook for 3 minutes.
8. Add the mince and cook for 25 minutes.
9. Add the coconut cream and salt, mix well, remove from the heat and leave to rest for 3–4 minutes before serving.

CHEF’S TIP
You can replace the desiccated coconut with a chunk of fresh coconut for a fresher taste.
Keema with Coconut is popular dish from the South Indian state of Kerala.

If you like this you should try our
Ambot TikChilli ChickenChilli PaneerButter ChickenMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken Vindaloo Restaurant-style)Chicken BhoonaChicken Recheade

Check out 5 Best Goa Curries

What will you find in the middle of a coconut? The letter ‘o’.

How to cook… Fish Tikka

Recipes

Serves 4 as a starter

Fish Tikka is often overlooked for some of the more popular Tandoori recipes yet fish marinates really well and is quick and easy to cook. Fish makes a top Indian starter but also makes an excellent main dish if combined with Bombay Aloo and Spiced Indian Mixed Salad.

What you need…
• 4 white fish fillets, about 120-150g each
• 0.5 recipe of Tikka Marinade

How to make it
1. Pat the fish dry with a paper towel and coat the pieces in the Tikka Marinade. Leave for at least 15 minutes but preferably 24–48 hours.
2. Preheat your oven to 170 C. Place the pieces on a greased baking tray, ensuring all the pieces are kept well apart and cook, turning once, until the fish flakes with a fork and the marinade is crispy (about 20 minutes). Check one of the largest pieces to ensure it’s cooked. If not return to the oven.

CHEF’S TIP
To achieve those blackened edges the Indian restaurants get by cooking in the tandoor you can finish the fish off for a couple of minutes under a very hot grill. Just remove the fish from the oven a couple of minutes earlier.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Dopiaza

Try this tandoori dish. It’s sure to go swimmingly.

How to cook… Mushroom Chilli Dry Fry

Recipes

Serves 4 as a starter

This is a popular vegetarian Indo-Chinese stir-fry dish, combining flavours from India and China. Mushroom Chilli Dry Fry is a favourite Indian restaurant starter and should be always be served fresh. It’s a very hot, dry dish using chilli and soy sauce.

What you need…
• 4 Tablespoons cornflour
• 5 Tablespoons soy sauce
• 600g mushrooms, sliced
• 3 Tablespoons oil
• 1 small onion, roughly chopped
• 1 green pepper
• 1–5 green chillies (to your taste), chopped
• 1.5 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
• 2 tomatoes, roughly chopped
• 4 spring onions chopped, to garnish
• A few coriander leaves, chopped, for garnish



How to make it
1. Mix the cornflour with 3 Tablespoons of soy sauce and coat the mushrooms in the mixture. Marinate for 15 minutes.
2. Heat oil to a medium-hot heat. Fry the mushrooms until all the pieces are sealed (about 2–3 minutes), then set aside.
3. Add the green peppers to the pan and stir-fry until they start to soften (about 3–4 minutes).
4. Add the onions, chillies, pepper and chilli flakes and stir fry for another 2–3 minutes. Add a tiny bit of water if needed but not too much as this is a dry dish.
5. Add the rest of soy sauce and mix in well.
6. Add in the tomatoes and mushrooms and stir-fry until they are all cooked.
7. Garnish with spring onion and coriander and serve fresh.

CHEF’S TIP
Check other popular Indian restaurant dishes such as Chicken Chilli Dry Fry. Also known as Hakka Chinese, this distinct Indo-Chinese cuisine was developed by a small group of people who settled in Kolkota from China.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Dopiaza

Don’t give this to someone who is struggling. You should never Kikkoman when he’s down.

How to cook… Stewed Taro Leaves

Recipes

Serves 4 as a side dish

These Stewed Taro Leaves are a Mauritian dish that is served as an accompaniment. When stewed this tropical green leaves (also called kalo) turn a dark brown, almost black and are thick and delicious when cooked with onion, a few spices and tangy tamarind paste. Mauritians eat this as street food with a roti.

What you need…
• 20 stalks of taro with leaves. Peel the first layer, clean thoroughly and chop.
• 1 Tablespoon oil
• 0.5 onion, chopped fine
• 0.5 teaspoon garlic teaspoon
• 0.5 teaspoon ginger paste
• 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
• 0.5 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 5 curry leaves
• 1 Tablespoon tamarind paste
• Salt to taste
• 1 tomato, chopped
• A few coriander leaves to garnish


How to make it
1. Heat the oil in a pan to a medium pan and fry the onion, garlic and ginger until the onion softens (about 5 minutes)
2. Add the chilli flakes, cumin seeds and curry leaves, and cook for 3 minutes.
3. Add the taro leaves, tamarind paste, salt and a little water, cover the pan and cook for 15 minutes.
4. Add the tomato and cook until the colour darkens and is fully stewed (about 15–30 minutes). Add a little more water if needed but not too much as this should be served thick.
5. Garnish with the coriander leaves and serve.
• Photo of leaves by Thierry Caro, published in Wikipedia

CHEF’S TIP
Chop everything as fine as possible to speed up the stewing process.

Taro leaves growing in Reunion.

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Don’t bother staring at the leaves. They won’t be able to tell you your future.

How to cook… Spicy Fish Pie

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

This is a spicy twist on the classic Fish Pie, combining white fish and prawns with spices and herbs and topped with Bengali mashed potato. Aloo Bhorta.

What you need…
• 1 recipe Aloo Bhorta
• 12 large prawns, deveined but not peeled
• 400ml milk
• 1 onion, sliced
• 400g white fish
• Small handful parsley, chopped
• 50g cream
• Salt to taste

Spice Mix
• 3 cloves
• 5 curry leaves
• 2 cardamons, cracked open but not crushed
• 5 peppercorns
• 1 dried red chilli
• Pinch of turmeric

For the sauce
• 50g butter
• 50g plain flour


How to make it
1. Cook the prawns in a little water in a pan until they turn pink (about 5 minutes). Allow to cool and peel. Set aside.
2. Heat the milk gently in a pan until it bubbles gently, add the Spice Mix and onion and cook for 1 minute.
3. Add the fish and poach for until it is cooked through (about 7–8 minutes).
4. Add the fish to a baking dish of about 22cm x 22cm and flake it (any skin should peel off easily and you can discard this). Spread the prawns and the parsley evenly on top of the fish.
5. In another pan heat the butter to a medium heat, add the flour and mix for 1 minute.
6. Turn down the heat to low, add the milk (not the solids) bit by bit to the butter and flour. Add the cream and cook gently for 5 minutes, constantly mixing to avoid it sticking.
7. Add the solids (you can remove the whole spices if you don’t want them in the pie), warm through, then pour over the fish and prawns evenly. Add salt.
8. Spread the Aloo Bhorta evenly on top of the sauce.
9. Heat the oven to 200 C and cook for 30 minutes. The potato should be slightly browned on the top.

CHEF’S TIP
When spreading potato on the top start from the edges and work inwards making sure there are no gaps that allow the mixture to bubble through when cooking.

The Spicy Fish Pie, just before the Aloo Bhorta is spread across the top.

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This is a clever dish. It knows Pi to 50 decimal points.

How to cook… Aloo Bhorta

Recipes

Serves 4 as a side dish

Mashed potato is a favourite around the world and the sub-continent is no different. This Bengali favourite, which uses garlic, chopped onion and spices in a mustard-flavoured oil, is also popular in Rajasthan and Bihar. You may also see it called Aloo Bhatte or Chokha.

What you need…
• 500g potatoes (about 3 medium-sized potatoes), peeled and chopped
• 1 teaspoon oil
• 1 teaspoon mustard oil
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
• 0.5 onion, finely chopped
• 2 chillies, chopped
• 0.5 garam masala,
• 0.5 crushed black pepper
• Small handful coriander leaves, chopped
• Salt to taste
• 1 teaspoon ghee



How to make it
1. Boil the potatoes in water with a pinch of salt until they are very soft. Mash and set aside.
• While the potatoes are boiling warm the oil in a pan to high heat and fry the mustard seeds and cumin seeds for 15 seconds. Be careful not to burn them.
• Turn down the heat to medium, add the garlic and fry for 1 minute.
• Add the onion (keep a few pieces back for the garnish) and chilli and fry for 2 minutes.
• Add the garam masala, pepper and coriander leaves, and cook for 3 minutes. Add a little water if necessary.
• Add the mixture to the mash, add salt, and mix together well.
• Garnish with the remaining onion, add the ghee to the top, and serve.

CHEF’S TIP
To achieve the mustardy taste you can use mustard oil instead of the vegetable oil (just omit the mustard seeds from the recipe).
Delicious Aloo Bhorta is the perfect comfort food and is the ideal stuffing for a roti.

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What’s better, mashed potato or chips? It’s advisable not to choose sides.

How to cook… Chicken Patia

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

Although traditionally cooked with fish, restaurants now serve this Parsee dish with your choice of meat, and chicken has soon become a curry house favourite. Parsee dishes are famed for their sweet and sour flavours and Patia is no different, using tamarind and jaggery to get the balance just right.

What you need…
• 2 Tablespoons oil
• 2 garlic cloves, sliced (or 1 teaspoon garlic paste)
• 600ml Base Curry Sauce
• Half a red pepper, cut into 2cm chunks
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• Small handful of coriander (chop up the stems to add to the curry and keep a few leaves aside for the garnish)
• Salt to taste
• 800g chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
• 1 Tablespoon jaggery (or brown sugar)
• 1 Tablespoon tamarind sauce/chutney (or lime juice)

Spice Mix
• 1 Tablespoon curry powder
• 1 teaspoon turmeric
• 1 teaspoon chilli powder
• 1 teaspoon paprika


How to make it
1. Heat the oil in a pan to a medium heat, add the garlic and fry for 1 minutes. While it is cooking mix the Spice Mix with a little water to form a sloppy paste.
2. Add the Spice Mix to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. It should now be thick and gloopy.
3. Add the Base Curry Sauce and pepper and cook for 3 minutes.
4. Add the chicken and cook for 5 minutes.
5. Add the jaggery, tamarind and garam masala, and continue cooking until all the chicken pieces are cooked through (about 7–10 minutes).
6. Garnish with the coriander leaves and serve.

CHEF’S TIP
Restaurants sometimes use lime juice and brown sugar instead of tamarind and jaggery.

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If someone wants to taste this curry then just Parsee it to them.

How to cook… Tikka Kofta Masala

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

Punjabis love their spicy meat dishes. These lamb koftas are mixed with ground whole spices and garlic then soaked in marinade and cooked in the moreish masala sauce to create the meaty and creamy favourite Tikka Kofta Masala.

What you need…
• 600g lamb mince
• 2 teaspoons garlic paste
• 1 recipe Tikka Marinade
• 1 Tablespoon oil
• 240ml Base Curry Sauce
• 1 Tablespoon tomato paste (or ketchup)
• 3 Tablespoons yoghurt
• Small handful coriander leaves, chopped
• 0.5 teaspoon turmeric
• 2 Green chillies, chopped
• Salt to taste
• 2 Tablespoons cream

Kofta Mix
• 10 black peppercorns
• 2 green cardamons
• 6cm piece cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon crushed chilli flakes
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• 1 teaspoon salt



How to make it
1. Grind the Kofta Mix to a powder. Add the garlic and mix thoroughly with the mince. Form the mixture into 12 even-sized balls.
2. Add the koftas to the Tikka Marinade making sure they are all covered. Leave to rest for 30 minutes.
3. Heat the oven to 160 C. Remove the koftas from the marinade, shake off the excess marinade and cook on a baking tray for 25 minutes.
4. Heat the oil in a pan to a medium heat, add the Base Curry Sauce, leftover Tikka Marinade, tomato paste, yoghurt and cook for 3 minutes.
5. Add the coriander leaves (keep a few aside for the garnish), turmeric, chillies and salt, and cook for 2 minutes.
6. Add the koftas, making sure they are all covered with the sauce and cook for 3 minutes.
7. Turn down the heat, add the cream and mix well, being careful not to break up the koftas and cook until the koftas are all cooked through (about 5 minutes).
8. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve.

CHEF’S TIP
If you are looking to stretch this dish a little bit further on the money front you can add a little bit of finely choped onion to the koftas and you’ll be able to make a couple more. Just be careful not to add to much or thet’ll lose their flavour.

If you like this you should try our
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What’s the best social media site to show off this dish? Tikka Tok.

How to cook… Garlic and Chilli Mushrooms

Recipes

Serves 4 as a side dish

A simple dish for mushroom lovers who love a bit of spice in their side dishes. Just add the mushrooms to a little Base Curry Sauce, add plenty of garlic and chilli for this dryish dish.

What you need…
• 2 Tablespoons butter
• 1 teaspoon oil
• 6 garlic cloves, sliced
• 3 green chillies (2 chopped and once sliced lengthways for garnish)
• 600g mushrooms, washed and sliced
• 50g Base Curry Sauce (more if you like more sauce)
• Small handful coriander, chopped
• Salt, to taste

Spice Mix
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• 1 teaspoon chilli powder
• 0.5 teaspoon turmeric



How to make it
1. Heat the butter to a low-medium heat. While it is heating mix the Spice Mix with enough water to form a sloppy paste.
2. Fry the mushrooms until they soften (about 4–5 minutes). Set aside.
3. Drain all the remaining butter from the mushrooms into the pan and add the oil. Heat to a medium heat and fry the garlic for 1 minute.
4. Add the chillies and cook for 1 minute.
5. Add the Spice Mix and chilli, and cook for 2 minutes. It should now be thick and gloopy.
6. Add the Base Curry Sauce and coriander, and cook for 2 minutes.
7. Add the mushrooms and salt and heat through until the mushrooms are fully cooked and soft.

CHEF’S TIP
Always use freash chillies and garlic for this dish.



Garlic Chilli Mushrooms is a super spicy side dish.

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The perfect dish for warding off vampires!

How to cook… Vegetable Shashliks

Recipes

Makes 4 Shashliks

This mix of mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes and onions, marinated in Tikka Marinade and grilled makes a fresh-tasting starter or you can double up the portion for tasty main dish. The trick is cook the Vegetable Shashliks just enough so they soften and the edges are charred.

What you need…
• 1 recipe Tikka Marinade (omit the water)
• 16 thick slices or chunks of mushroom
• 12 chunks of red pepper, about 3cm square (stab them a few times as this absorbs the marinade better)
• 12 chunks of green or yellow pepper, about 3cm square (stab them a few times as this absorbs the marinade better)
• 1 tomato, cut into 8 segments (stab them a few times as this absorbs the marinade better)
• Half an onion cut into chunks


How to make it
1. Slide the pieces, alternately, onto a skewer.
2. Coat all the pieces generously in Tikka Marinade. Leave for 30 minutes.
3. Grill the Shashliks, turning a couple of times, until they soften and start to char on the edges (about 15 minutes).
4. Serve with Mint Yoghurt Sauce.

CHEF’S TIP
Experiment with other vegetables of your choice.

If you like this you should try our
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Why do stupid evil guys never climb hills? Because they don’t want to be a High, der, Baddie.

How to cook… Rajma Curry

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

Rajma (red kidney bean) Curry is a hearty North Indian dish and makes a delicious, filling main meal or excellent side dish. The kidney beans require a bit of preparation but you can skip this by using canned beans if you don’t have time. Take a good serving of your Base Curry Sauce, add the kidney beans, add a bit of garlic and a sprinkle of spice for a great medium-strength curry. Garnish with cream and fresh coriander.

What you need…
• 750g red kidney beans
• 2 Tablespoons ghee
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 600g Base Curry Sauce
• 2 Tablespoons tomato ketchup
• Small handful fresh coriander (chop up the stems to add to the curry and set aside the leaves for garnish)
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• Salt to taste
• 2 Tablespoons cream

Spice Mix
• 1 Tablespoon mild curry powder
• 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
• 1 teaspoon chilli powder
• 1 teaspoon vinegar

How to make it
1. Soak the kidney beans in water overnight. Drain the water and rinse the beans. Cover with fresh water and boil for until the bean are well cooked and completely soft (about 45–60 minutes). Drain and set aside. Alternatively you can use canned beans. Drain them and rinse them well.2.Heat the ghee to a high heat. While it is heating up mix the Spice Mix with the vinegar and enough water to form a sloppy paste.
3. Add the cumin seeds and fry for 15 seconds. They should sizzle immediately. You can test the ghee is hot enough by adding one seed.
4. Add the garlic paste and cook for 1 minute on a lower heat. You may have to remove the pan from the heat initially to stop the paste burning. (If it burns then throw it away and start again.)
5. Add the Spice Mix paste and cook for 2 minutes. It should now be thick and gloopy.
6. Add the Base Curry Sauce and the tomato and cook for 2 minutes.
Add the kidney beans, mix well and cook for 5 minutes.
7. Add the garam masala, salt and coriander stems and continue cooking until the chicken is fully cooked.
8. Serve, garnished with the cream and the coriander leaves.

CHEF’S TIP
Spice up the curry with a couple of chopped red chillies. Add them just before stage 5.

If you like this you should try our
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“What are you cooking? Don’t tell me we having another hot curry tonight?” … “Stop naggaing me!”

How to cook… Chicken Chettinad

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

Chicken Chettinad tis the trademark dish from the South Indian city of Chettinad, whole spices and coconut are dry-fried and ground, then added to a sauce of tomatoes, onions, garlic and ginger to create a classic Tamil Nadu dish, with chillies providing the kick.

What you need…
• 2 Tablespoons sesame oil (you can use vegetable oil but will lose some of the flavour)
• 10 curry leaves
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 400g Base Curry sauce
• 0.5 teaspoon turmeric
• 0.5 teaspoon coriander powder
• 0.5 teaspoon chilli powder
• 0.5 teaspoon salt
• 800g chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
• A few coriander leaves for garnish

Spice Mix
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 4cm piece cinnamon stick
• 3 cloves
• 3 cardamons
• 6 Tablespoons desiccated coconut



How to make it
1. Dry fry the spices from the Spice Mix on a medium heat in a pan for 15 seconds then add the coconut until it browns (about 2 minutes). Keep stirring and be careful not to burn the Spice Mix. Grind the mixture and set aside.
2. Heat the oil in the same pan to a medium heat and fry the curry leaves for 15 seconds.
3. Add the garlic paste and fry for 1 minute.
4. Add the Base Curry Sauce and cook for 3 minutes.
5. Add the Spice Mix, turmeric, coriander, chilli powder and salt and cook for 3 minutes. Add a little water if needed.
6. Add the chicken pieces and fry until all the pieces are cooked (about 10 minutes)
7. Serves, garnished with the coriander leaves.

CHEF’S TIP
If using an electric grinder it’s best to let your dry-fry mix cool down before grinding.



Chicken Chettinad is a popular dish from the heart of Tamil Nadu.

If you like this you should try our
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If you love South Indian dishes you should Chett this recipe out.