Ok I admit it I have been a little quiet recently and I haven’t posted much…. Not all my fault as I have been doing other things, you know getting on with the life that is mine and not eating that much Indian food; well no, that’s a lie because I have.
I’ve been getting my fix from the chilled counter at ASDA, a large supermarket chain for those that don’t know. That said their curries are a little better than passable as only a Daag based ubiquitous common curry can be , but that being a given they are also very tasty and full of everything you would expect to see in a good curry.
I have also underpinned that with a number of dishes from my local curry house, and again as Daag based ubiquitous common curries go nothing to complain about, other than the usual standard menu that frankly after twenty or more years of eating local indian restaurant food bores the arse off of me.
My problem now is the same as it has always been why oh why do restaurants not actually think beyond that same o’ same o’ menu that is the right of passage for pretty much every Indian restaurants I have ever been in been in?
Take a trip to a French or Italian eatery and in nine cases out of ten there is a specials board offering a daily something or other that isn’t on the menu.
Someone please tell me why the Indian restaurant can’t do that?
If the French restaurant can grill some fresh fish and add a sauce why cant the Indian eatery the principles are the same…??….
No come on I really want to know….
As someone who cooks curry I suggest that they just cant be bothered and wish to be just the same as the man who owns the eatery next door. I know there are some eateries that operate at a slightly higher level offering westernised Haute cuisine dressed up as Indian , but I challenge you to point me to any restaurant in my city of Nottingham that offers any regional dishes whatsoever.
So frankly I am bored to death and now cook my own to get that variety.
and say “Restaurateurs you should be ashamed of yourselves”
Tell me there’s no demand if you like, but I reckon that in a country where Indian food is pretty much the national dish, and I will tell you that is not the case “I demand it”.
Tell me that it cant be cooked in a time that the customer is prepared to wait, I say that’s rubbish and I use this dish as an example!
Yes it needs a little preparation, but no more than any other dish and there are many that fit into this category.
All you need to do is just find a chef with a little more imagination than the Korma, Vindaloo, biryani and Pasanda toting cooks that seem to be in the majority; work out a standard menu and a daily special then advertise that fact that you are offering something a little different and sit back and watch the tills ring with joy!
You don’t need to be Atul Kochar but you do need to be able to aspire to seeking to offer something different at a fair price, and by that I mean in England £6 to £8 for a main course do that and the people will come!
This following dish I would suggest could fit easily into this category, being very easy to prepare for both the home and the restaurant chef, simple to cook as the sauce could be varied to using a Daag if you insist, and there are of course plenty of others that could slip into this realm….. so go restaurant owners tickle my taste buds with something different!
Murgh Kandhari Kofta
The Whats IN The Kofta’s
½ kg chicken mince
3 small Shallots chopped finely
1 slice bread crumbs
1 tbsp crushed cashew nuts
½ tsp salt,
1 tsp red chili powder,
1 tsp Garam Masala
The how to for the koftas
To ½ kg chicken mince, add the salt, 1tsp red chili powder, the bread crumbs, shallots, and egg white.
½ tsp Garam Masala, ½ tsp cardamom powder, ½ tsp cinnamon powder and 1 tbsp crushed cashew nuts in it and mix/blend together to a coarse paste then roll into bite sized balls, place in the refrigerator until required….
Fry the Kofta’s to add a little colour to them before you start making the sauce and set aside until required
The Whats in the Sauce
1 Siced onion
1 small tin tomatoes
2 Tbsp oil/Ghee
1 tsp ginger Paste
1 tsp garlic paste
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp red chili powder
1 tsp garam Masala
1 tbsp. Tamarind paste
1 inch sqr jaggery
200ml Chicken stock
The how to for the Sauce……
Heat oil/Ghee in a pan ,and fry the onion until dark golden brown adding the garlic and the ginger, and after a further minute or so add 1 tsp chilli powder, ½ tsp salt, Garam Masala, and turmeric powders and cook for a further 5 or ten minutes
Add the tinned tomatoes and tamarind and bring to the boil then add the meatballs, and the 200ml chicken stock or enough to barely cover the meatballs, cover and cook on a low heat until the meatballs are cooked through and the gravy has reduced to a thickish consistency!
Finally just before serving add the Jaggery and add ½ tsp garam masala and sprinkle with some chopped coriander,
finish off with a tablespoon of cream or yoghurt. then eat and enjoy……