Sunday, 10 October 2010

#7 Learn to cook Indian food

10 tips from World Curry Fest

Ok so I didn’t get on the cooking bus classes at the festival but I did pick up quite a few cooking tips from the 3 of 5 cooking demonstrations I managed to see.

1. When cooking a Thai curry boil the coconut milk first before adding the spices or curry paste

2. 2 options for cooking an Indian curry, Chef Oberoi cooked his sauce first then added the meat to cook into the sauce, Chef Moon cooked the meat in the oil and spices then added the remaining sauce ingredients.

3. Hemant Oberoi used corn oil as alternative to ghee, and rapeseed oil was used by Stephanie Moon, I take this to mean use whichever fat you prefer to cook with.

4. Oberoi also cooked in a saucepan, Indians preferring to use the flat bottomed pan or handi dishes, leaving the woks to be used by the Chinese (which is interesting as I always cook in wok)

5. When cooking with yoghurt you can either use it to marinade your meat in before cooking or add it to the pan after you have taken it off the heat – just before serving.

6. Cooking with spinach looks easy - tear up and add to the pan a few minutes before the end and let it reduce down into the curry. I’ve only eaten spinach once before, but the spinach in the pakoras from the food stall and the rhubarb chicken saag Stephanie cooked were both delicious so I am definelty going to give it a try.

7. I was pleased to discover that I add garam masala as an extra ingredient to my dishes just like Grand Master Chef Oberoi does!

8. When buying a whole chicken check if it free range by looking at the legs, caged chickens’ legs have black spots of ammonia from the droppings.

9. Wild wood sorrel has a delicious bramley apple flavour and can be used as a garnish, and its free form the forest! For more tips on foraging check out the wild cooks blog,

10. In Yorkshire we have our very own rhubarb triangle between Leeds, Bradford and Wakefield, and it’s well known for its production of top quality rhubarb! For all the rhubarb fans at curry fest who wanted the date of the 2011 Rhubarb festival, it will be taking place in Wakefield 26-27 February. For more details see the Experience Wakefield website,
There is also a facebook fan page,

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