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Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

A "Quick Start" for members new to BIR style curry cooking - basic techniques and simple recipes to get you started on your BIR-style curry cooking adventures.
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David Fowler
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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by David Fowler » Sun Jul 16, 2017 9:01 am

Great recipe. I've tried a few over the years but this one is definitely up with the best! Thanks.

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Shadowhun152 » Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:35 pm

I notice that this base contains Coriander and it can be used for lots of different curries.

Last time i made Al's base gravy it made the best Madras i've ever tasted, but when i tried to make a Korma with the same base the Korma didn't taste right at all. I can only put it down to the Coriander in the base gravy overpowering the flavour.

Are bases supposed to be totally versatile, or do restaurants have a few different bases tailored to different styles of curry i.e. sweet, hot?

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by ScotchBonnet » Mon Jul 17, 2017 11:30 pm

Some people just don't like coriander at all, some like the stems but not the leaves and others love the stuff. Best advice is leave out the coriander it you don't like it and just add it in to certain dishes as you see fit (or depending upon who you are feeding).
"There is no such thing as too much oil; just an insufficiency of naan".

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Cory Ander » Tue Jul 18, 2017 4:23 am

Suggest you try it, as is, and see how you go, Shadowhun? You can always subsequently adapt things (e.g. omit the coriander) to meet your own personal tastes (most people do).
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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Clivewire » Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:11 pm

Thanks for this... do all Currys have this ? I used to make Currys from curryfrenzy but they are ok but don't cut the mustard so to speak

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Clivewire » Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:39 pm

I HAVE tryed this gravey with a masala, tastes good, looking forward to expand

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Cory Ander » Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:54 am

Most (if not all) British Indian Restaurant (BIR) main dishes (and some of their side dishes) are made using a curry base, Clive. A curry base is an integral part of BIR style curry cooking (and it is where most of the distinctive flavours comes from).
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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by blackcloud » Fri Aug 04, 2017 1:35 pm

Just made this base gravy just now and made everything to the "t" until the last final ingredient which was the spice mix, I made the spice mix but forgot the base only called for 1 table spoon of that and I put the whole spice mix in, I realised right away but alot of it had disolved into the water but I tried to take out as much of the spice mix as possible but not sure how much spice mix ended up in, probably more than it should have, So do you think its ruined? and start all over again? a whole morning wasted :(

I tasted the base and I can taste the spice mix in the gravy, not sure if that means too much of the spice mix has gone in. Its not as yellow as the recipe instructions its more like a mustard yellow colour. The blended base is now just in its final 30 mins simmer. Is there anything I can do to rectify it? or do you think it will be ok? is it ok I can taste the spice mix in the base or is that a sign I have added too much spice mix?

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Marktheshark » Fri Aug 04, 2017 2:04 pm

My gut reaction would be "Never mind, I'll use it and make some more next time with the correct spices in".
Dont throw it away, unless you dont like it of course, you never know BC, you might have made the perfect base, its all about what works for you and balancing the flavors out mate.

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by blackcloud » Fri Aug 04, 2017 2:08 pm

I had to add some water to maintain the correct volume as the instructions say. I can not taste the spices as much now as before. Maybe it will be ok, it tastes pretty bland though apart of being able to taste the spices a little, its that normal for it to taste bland?

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Marktheshark » Fri Aug 04, 2017 2:40 pm

Yes indeed, the average base is a little bland, bit like a mild onion, vegetable soup type thing, the magic happens when you cook the curry and roast or caramelize the base in the pan, the true flavours come out , ie. the sweetness off the onions, in other words, THE MAGIC!!!

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by blackcloud » Fri Aug 04, 2017 2:51 pm

Thanks, think I added a bit too much water, shall I just leave the blended base to simmer for a bit longer to thicken it up? or maybe it wont thicken up now?
Yeah pretty bland tasting except the flavour of the spice mix.

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Marktheshark » Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:07 pm

It all depends on what you want bc, my base is about the consistency skimmed milk, some like it a bit thicker, you could simmer for a while to reduce it.

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Sigma » Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:12 pm

Just don't put any mix powder in the pan when you come to make the finished curries and don't use any spices in your pre-cooked meats. That should help to even it out
"Absorb what is useful, discard what is not, add what is uniquely your own." - Bruce Lee

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by blackcloud » Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:27 pm

Thanks, the blended curry base is still simmering as I am trying to thicken it, its the consistency of water at the moment. Do you think it will be ok? how could I thicken it? simmer longer? maybe it will thicken when I make the actual curry?

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Marktheshark » Fri Aug 04, 2017 5:01 pm

It will thicken when you make a curry guaranteed bc

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by blackcloud » Fri Aug 04, 2017 5:24 pm

Thanks, I decided to make it again. The only thing I didnt have a green bell pepper for the base and just used a yellow one, do you think this is ok?
I have made it exactly right this time (except a yellow Bell pepper) and just waiting for it to cool before blending. Just tasted it and it tastes amazing!! I could eat this as a soup! not sure how it tastes so good but it does. :):

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by Dragonsfire » Fri Aug 04, 2017 5:43 pm

Yellow/Red Peppers add more sweetness then the Green, its up to you.

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by pauly » Fri Aug 04, 2017 5:50 pm

As others have said, I would suggest making a curry without adding any more spices & see what it tastes like, you needn't even add any meat, just taste the finished curry. What are you intending to make with it ?

The base should taste bland & be watery.

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Re: Simple Curry Base (aka Base Gravy/Sauce)

Post by blackcloud » Fri Aug 04, 2017 6:03 pm

Well I am intending on making Rogan Josh Chicken, Chicken bhuna and chicken dopiaza. I like sweet flavourful curries with tomatos and onions.

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