I make this simple curry base primarily for use in simple, mild, curries (e.g. korma, tikka masala, etc). But it is also fine to use in hotter and spicier curries (e.g. jalfrezi, madras, vindaloo, etc). It is very simple to make and can be used whenever a recipe calls for a "curry base", "base sauce", "base gravy", "gravy", etc.
It is ideal for those wanting to make a small volume, of a simple curry base, that takes little time to prepare.
Please try it, you might be surprised by how the resultant curries are!
This recipe produces about 800ml of curry base, which is sufficient to make about 4 single portion curries.
- 250g (about 2 medium) brown onions (cut into halves)
- 20g (about 1 heaped Tbsp) fresh garlic (chopped or pureed) - here
- 10g (about 1 heaped tsp) fresh ginger (chopped or pureed) - here
- 75ml (about 5 Tbls) vegetable oil
- 450ml water
- 0.25 tsp salt
- 1 heaped tsp spice mix - here
- 10g (about 1 heaped Tbsp) fresh coriander stalks or root (coarsely chopped)
- Peel, wash and cut the vegetables
- Add all of the ingredients (except the fresh coriander) to a suitably sized pan (i.e. 1 litre capacity or bigger)
- Cover the pan and heat to a gentle simmer
- Very gently simmer (on the lowest heat setting) for about 45 minutes (or until the onions are soft enough to blend). Gently stir, occasionally, to prevent sticking and/or burning
- Turn off heat, add coriander and allow to cool sufficiently for blending
- Blend (I use a jug blender) into a fine, soup-like, consistency
- Use immediately, store in a fridge (for 3 days maximum) or freeze in suitable airtight containers
- You can make more (or less) curry base by simply increasing (or decreasing) the quantities of each ingredient by the same ratio
- You can use onions, other than common-all-garden brown onions, if you prefer
- You can use a commercial curry powder, or another "spice mix", instead of my curry masala, if you prefer (but the result may be different)
- The relatively long, gentle, simmer is to develop the sweetness of the onions. DO NOT simmer vigorously!
- The resultant curry base should be a pale, creamy, yellow colour and should posses a nice, subtle, sweet, smell and taste. It should not be bitter
- All non-liquid spoon measures are rounded, unless otherwise stated
- A level teaspoon (tsp) contains 5ml of liquid
- A level tablespoon (Tbsp) contains 15ml of liquid