In the United Kingdom, curries are part of everyday eating, due to the immigration of Indians and Pakistanis to the country. Many opened restaurants, introducing there cuisine to the British public, who soon got a taste for it. Mr Winewithfood definately loves Indian food and loves to explore different versions.
Curry powder is actually the British invention of a commercially prepared blend of spices and the word curry is a word generally used by the british to refer to any kind of dish that contains a blend of spices, whether it be from India or Asia. Balti refers to the dish it is cooked and served in, which has two handles.
Balti is one of the fastest dishes to make and it is a one pot meal, so it’s really good if you want the flavour but not the hassle!! I often make my own naan bread, as the flavour is so much better than shop bought, but if you are short of flour, then by all means buy some or order some from you local Indian restaurant. However, the recipe is at the very end of this post, so scroll all the way down if you want to make it, as you will have to do that a while before you
WINE NOTE: Dry style Gewurztraminer, from Alsace, is a wonderful aromatic wine that is perfect with spices! It’s bold, fruity and can stand up to a hotter dish if you choose to make this one a little spicier, but even if you make a milder version, it will still be a very enoyable pairing.
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp sunflower oil
2 onions, roughly chopped (large onions if in the UK)
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1oz / 25g fresh root ginger, roughly chopped
3 tbsp medium curry paste, or balti curry paste
1 tbsp tomato purée
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in to bite-sized chunks
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp superfine /caster sugar
4 fresh ripe tomatoes, quartered
1 Cup / 200g baby spinach leaves
Begin by melting the butter with 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large non-stick lidded skillet. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger to the pan, then cover with the lid and cook over a low heat for 15 minutes until very soft, stirring occasionally.
Remove the lid from the pan and turn up the heat. Cook the onion mixture for 2-3 minutes more, stirring constantly until well coloured. Add the curry paste to the pan, turn down the heat slightly and cook with the onions for 3 minutes more, stirring frequently. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the tomato purée.
Blitz the spiced onion mixture with a hand held blender until as smooth as possible. Tip the onion mixture into a bowl and set aside.
Place the same skillet back over a medium heat and add the remaining oil and the chicken pieces. Fry the chicken for 3 minutes, turning often, until lightly coloured all over.
Add all the spiced onion mixture, 6 fluid oz / 175ml just boiled water, salt, sugar and tomatoes, bring to a simmer and cook for 4 mins. Add the spinach in a few handfuls, allowing each to soften a little before adding the next. Cook for a further minute, stirring regularly, or until the chicken is cooked through, the tomatoes are softened and the spinach has wilted.
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
1/4 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 egg, beaten
2 teaspoons salt
4 1/2 cups bread flour
1/4 cup butter, melted
Place all the ingredients in a bread making machine and put on dough setting. When ready, beat down with your fist then roll into flat breads.
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand about 10 minutes, until frothy. Stir in sugar, milk, egg, salt, and enough flour to make a soft dough. Knead for 6 to 8 minutes on a lightly floured surface, or until smooth. Place dough in a well oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and set aside to rise. Let it rise 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in volume.
Beat down the dough with your fist. Pinch off small handfuls of dough about the size of a golf ball. Roll into balls, and place on a tray. Cover with a towel, and allow to rise until doubled in size, about 30 minutes. Roll out into flat breads
When curry is ready, preheat the broiler/ grill at high heat. Sprinkle the naans with water on the upper side and broil/ grill for a minute or two. turn and sprinkle with water and broil/ grill for another minute or two.