I consider myself as a bit of a curry lover but even so, I probably only have about a dozen curries that I cook or eat - korma, biryani, chicken tikka masala, rogan josh, balti, butter chicken, madras ... umm there are probably a few more but those are the ones that instantly spring to mind. Even with a well stocked spice rack, it can be hard to inject some really new and different flavours into the Indian-style dishes that I concoct. I therefore love the idea of The Spice Tailor's curry kits which lead you by the hand to make a tasty and authentic curry, halfway between the "from scratch" and the "ready made jar of sauce" methods.
I love the fact that you get a sachet of whole spices to really kickstart the process with some authentic, fresh flavours. The packaging also explains what each spice is and why it is there, which is great for learning how to incorporate these lesser known ingredients into your own cooking afterwards. This Punjabi Tomato Curry kit contains optional red chilli for clean heat, black cardamom for smoky depth, green cardamom for freshness, bay leaf for mellow fragrance, cinnamon for sweet warmth, black peppercorns for seasoning, clove for pungent sweetness. You heat up a tablespoon of olive oil and cook the spices for 20 seconds to release the flavours.
The cooking instructions tell you that this recipe works well with chicken, lamb, pork, duck or paneer cheese. I used turkey fillets, chopped into pieces, and added some red onion and mushrooms.
After browning the meat for a few minutes, you stir in the contents of the first "base" sachet and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
Time to stir in the "sauce" sachet and simmer for 3-5 minutes or until the meat is cooked through.
What I really like about the kit is that as you eat, you get a multitude of different flavours as you bite into pieces that have been cooking alongside the different whole spices (or even the spices themselves, if you're not careful !). This leads to a much more authentic and flavoursome curry than if you just throw a homogenous jar of cooking sauce over cooked meat. The fact that you can put the whole thing together in just ten minutes is another huge plus point in my eyes.
The packaging labels this recipe as "mellow" and gives it a one chilli rating. While it didn't set my mouth on fire and remove the top layer of my tongue, I would have given it a 2 or even 3 chilli rating, but this may be because I added the optional chilli to the oil at the very start.
The pouch weighs 255g - enough for 2 generous portions - and 100g contains 122 calories, 2.2g of protein, 7.7g of carbs (of which 4.9g sugars), 8.4g of fat (of which 1g saturates), 3.1g of fibre and 1g of salt.
star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : £2.89 for 255g
for more information : http://www.thespicetailor.com/
Disclosure : I received the product in order to write an honest review.
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