So its been a tough week………….
You have run yourself ragged from Monday through Friday and now you are home……. but ……….. it’s dinner time and you really CBA’d. We have all had nights like that – so???
“what you gonna do?”
Call for a carry out curry? ……………..Spend what, a tenner per person? and in an hour or so someone else will deliver a hot, rather fatty meal and you will eat far too much and wake up tomorrow to throw out the greasy leftovers and the sticky boxes. Bang goes all your frugal resolve!!
Well – we’ve all done it!!
But what if I showed you that you could have freshly made curry on the table in the time it takes you to cook some rice or warm up some bread?
What if I showed you how to spend pennies on your meal instead of pounds – how to use less oil in its preparation and how (if you are sneaky- like me ) you can transform a handful of leftovers into a delicious family meal?
Well I was – which is why I begged my Indian pal, Geetha to share with me the secret of her family week-night
“Curry in a Hurry”.
Geetha and her hubby work full-time, one Barrister (her) one Surgeon (him) – but everyone around the table for dinner is a top priority for them.
Shhhh! But her secret …………… well its a home-made curry paste that she uses as the base for loads of different meals – she used to store it under oil in a jar in the fridge – but now freezes it instead so that she can cut down on the fat content of the family meals.
This is a concentrated base that she uses mixed with other ingredients to make lots of different curry sauces.
So earlier this week -she came on Skype Video and taught me this – and it rocks!!! You so need to make this and stash it away – cos I think from here on in, Friday Night will be
Curry In a Hurry Night.
GEETHA’S DAAG CURRY BASE
Homemade Curry Paste
makes 20 individual portions
- 1 kg (2lb) onions – finely chopped
- 4cm piece of ginger – grated
- 6 cloves of garlic – crushed
- 3-4 green chilli’s – finely chopped
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes – blended
- 25 ml oil
- 4 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp tumeric
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1/2 cup chopped coriander
- 1 tsp salt
Heat the oil in the pan and fry the onions until they are a very dark brown colour.
Now – a message from Geetha “You are not cooking “French” here – this is NOT a gentle saute, this is a hard fry in the Indian style – so no pale translucent onions like this, they need to be a proper dark brown,” – like this:
Blend the ginger, garlic and chilli with 2 tbsp of water in a blender.
Add the ginger, garlic, chilli and coriander and cook out for 3 minutes.
Add the spices and cook out for 2 minutes (add a tablespoon of water if the mixture is sticking to the bottom of the pan)
Stir in the blended tomatoes, salt, coriander and 250ml of water.
Simmer the mixture for 15 minutes over a low heat.
Allow the mixture to cool completely.
(Now I know that just looks like a bowl of brown goo – but until they make Blogs with “smelly-vision” you are just going to have to take my word for it how utterly fragrant and lovely this stuff smells……………. cross my heart and hope to lose my spell-check!!)
This mixture is enough to make 4 family meals for 4 – 5 people, so either split the mixture in to four and freeze – or what I find is more useful is to do my trick of freezing it in my muffin tin in individual portions.
– then if I am on my own or fancy a curry at lunch I can rustle up a curry in a hurry for one by whipping one block from the freezer…….. sneaky Eh?
So I now have weeks worth of curry pastes to use on Friday nights – already dreaming of the different kinds of curry I will be able to rustle up for our Frugal Feast Fridays.
Looking for inspiration? Here are some of the fabulous curry dishes we have made in the last few weeks for your frugal delectation and enjoyment.
Remember – its all about the quality of our family’s lives – its not about how much we spend!
CHICKEN KORMA – click for recipe
“Hi there only me again!! I made this last night was so quick and easy and was the best curry I have ever made, the daughter (16) Lillie was soo impressed, thank you for another fab recipe, x”
CHICKEN BHUNA – click for recipe
“Was going make the korma again tonight, checked your site and found the bhuna recipe. I had the fennel seeds and cardoman pods so gave it a go. I can confirm it was also DELICIOUS!!!! I served it with naan, yoghurt, pineapple pieces and mango chutney. This has totally changed the way I make curries.”
NAAN BREAD – click for recipe
“Another great recipe Elaine, will be serving nice fresh nann with my curry in a hurry creation. My savings are being ploughed into home improvements which are about to get started.”
“Wow. That looks So Good! I might have to make it this weekend. My spouse doesn’t like curry at all but is conveniently away for awhile
Fantastic pricing as well. I agree that it looks like a good meal that “punches above its weight” for cost and health.”
I think we can safely say there will be fair few of these links to come ………….
COMING SOON TO A FRUGAL DINNER TABLE NEAR YOU!