Archive for the 'Recipes' Category

The Building Blocks of a good Indian curry

Nov 25 2010 Published by under Recipes

(I can sense a lot of nervousness sometimes in people,  when they are shopping to make an Indian curry or as they cook it. Questions such as  ‘what have I missed?’, or ‘am I on the right track?’.  Millions of recipes in books and on the internet tell us how, not  the   why of cooking. Here I will attempt to help you understand the basics  to boost your confidence.)

There are all sorts of curries as curry is a very loose word for the majority of sauces in which meat, vegetables or the both are served Asian style. These sauces vary in colour, consistency, taste and ingredients.  In Indian restaurants you read in the menu,  words such as jalfrezi, vindaloo,  dopiaza, tikka etc or in South-east Asian restaurants words such as sambal manis, sambal tumis etc. These are all different sorts of curries or rather, originate from one  curry,  and then get tweaked to achieve a certain taste, thickness or colour etc.

Basically there are 5 ingredients that are usually at the root of a curry. These are onions, garlic, ginger, chillies and tomatoes. They provide the bulk or base to which are added other things such as spices, herbs , fluids, etc. As a rule of thumb you use around 3-4 onions, a few cloves of garlic, an inch or two of ginger and a couple of chillies. You blend these together, fry them gently in oil then add in the tomatoes and then the spices, and then go along adding spices, meat , vegetables etc as it cooks and simmers.(Hare krshna followers use asafoetida, a substitute for onion and omit garlic.)

All sorts of variations branch out from this basic five ingredients. For example, tomatoes are omitted and replaced by mango or pomegranate powder if one needs a very dry sauce e.g just to coat vegetables or stuff them. A  sambal on the other hand  is a basic south east Asian and Southern Indian sauce,  cooked by omitting the ginger, and usually even without spices. It is amazing when you taste a sambal to know that it comprises of only  blended onions, a few curry leaves,  red chillies,  and garlic cooked gently with a tomato and some thick coconut milk.

In any curry,  tomatoes can be replaced by apples or plums for a fruitier taste.  Coconut milk,  milk or double cream are added for a creamy consistency. Grated beetroot brings redness to a curry, turmeric and chili powder combined bring a fresh dark orange colour, and spinach , spring greens and fresh coriander bring greeness. Red onions make curries more darker too. In a jalfrezi , peppers are added for that peppery taste, whilst more chillies  are added to a vindaloo.

Globalisation and modern day shopping brings so many more ingredients from around the world to us, and helps us explore better and stretch our creativity and imagination during cooking to achieve more fusion food .For example, Singaporean noodles involve a fusion of Indian and Chinese cooking ingredients such as turmeric, soya sauce, sesame oil, chilli powder etc.

Back to our curry, once you have created a lovely sauce by frying gently a blend of onions, garlic , chillies and ginger, you then make it more fluid by adding freshly chopped or canned tomatoes, even some yoghurt if desired, and then a small array of spices for taste and colour. These include a sprinkling of turmeric, chilli powder, cinnamon powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, star anise and even crushed cardamons and a few cloves.You can even dry roast or fry a few of these whole in the wok before you start frying the onion mix.

You then allow this mixture to  simmer gently till oil bubbles arise and begin to float. This is a sign that the onions etc and spices are cooked and ready for the vegetables and meat to be added. These are then cooked with  some water or fluids such as coconut milk. Leave the lid off if it is looking too runny  or add more liquid if it is too thick and lower the fire if its touching the bottom of the pan.

Traditionally, North Indians love to add a sprinkling of dry fenugreek leaves to this bubbling mixture and South Indians  sprinkle curry leaves. Both are aromatic. In vegeterian, fish, egg,  or prawn curries,  you can also add a teaspoon of yellow, or black (or both!) mustard seeds.  Asians love adding few whole fenugreek seeds too,  at the beginning of cooking,  and a tiny amount of mustard oil for added flavour. Towards the end you may want to add a sprinkling of garam masala as well.  Once a  curry is cooked, a sprinkling of chopped coriander leaves  and maybe a  squeeze of lime,  as well as a knob of butter all helps towards a better taste. This should help you see why curry recipes differ one from the other and understand the basics that are involved.

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How My Mom Made Chicken Curry

Nov 15 2010 Published by under Recipes


(This is a secret I am going to share with you. My mother was born in Amritsar, a Sikh holy town/city in north India,  married my dad and somewhere between the 2 World Wars they migrated to South East Asia. She had 8 kids, besides all her friends and neighbours and she was a prolific intelligent cook with a gifted intuition for cooking. Those days we did not have blenders and being her blue eyed boy, I  was her chosen child for spending plenty of time squatting on the floor or on a stool and using a large pestle and mortar to crush and blend. I derived great inspiration in seeing my mother getting happier by the minute as she saw large amounts of raw fresh indian masala coming together as I pounded and pounded for her till everything got crushed very smoothly but still a tiny bit coarse for crunchiness which modern blenders can fail to do sometimes. Those days we had chicken curry only on Sundays as a treat, and hence a lot of effort was put into making it so very tasty. I  share this recipe with you here, and I use it very regularly as part of the cafe’s Chicken Tikka Masala recipe I will share too soon).


Red onions, fresh ginger, garlic, red and green chillies, fresh plum tomatoes, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, dried red chillies, curry leaves, fenugreek seeds, star anise, cardamons, cinamon bark, red chilli powder, fresh coriander, spring onions, cloves, and preferably 1.5-2 kg of chicken quarters which you can buy fresh or defrost from frozen (chicken quarters are a mixture of parts of a chicken i.e thighs, legs, breast, drumsticks etc on the bone and skin that you buy from butchers or supermarkets), a can of coconut milk.


1)Blend together 3 red onions, 2-4” inch of fresh ginger, a bulb of garlic and 5 red chillies with very little water. Also blend coursely and keep aside a tablespoon each of coriander and cumin seeds and 4 dried red chillies. Wash the chicken and keep it aside too. Chop 2 red onions into rings, fry them in a wok and keep aside.

2)In your main wok or cooking pan, add half a small teacup of cooking oil and warm that gently. To that add the following- a tablespoon of cumin seeds, 20 curry leaves, 5 dried red chillies, 4 inches of cinnamon bark, 10 fenugreek seeds,  4 star anise, 8 cardamons crushed, and 10 cloves. As these spices sizzle within 1-2 minutes, add the blended mixture of onions etc. Let this heat up and  stir lovingly  for about 5-10 minutes till you see the mixture turning golden brown and deeper red and oil bubbles start surfacing. Now add the blend of crushed cumin, coriander and dry chilies, 2 teaspoons of turmeric, and 3  finely chopped  big juicy plum tomatoes. Stir this for 5-10 minutes and add salt too.

3)Once oil bubbles start surfacing, it means the tomatoes and spices are cooked,  so now add in all the chicken, stir, then let it bubble, as you stir intermittently. After 5 minutes, add the coconut milk and uncut or half sliced lengthway  green chillies and keep stirring till it starts to bubble. Now leave it to simmer on low heat. If you curry is looking thin/watery, do not cover as you simmer. Only cover once it looks thick.

4)After 10 minutes, take out a piece, slice it and inspect whether it is cooked. Do this till it looks cooked. Now add  freshly chopped coriander and spring onions, stir and cover for 4 minutes. Serve with fresh rice, breads, chutney and pickles and even some chopped raw onion and fresh green chillies.

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Secrets of Thai Green Curry

Oct 04 2010 Published by under Recipes

Thai green curry has slowly become a very popular dish in this country. This is because it looks fresh and green, feels light, tastes slightly tangy, sweet sour, creamy, and coconuty, has a beautiful thick yet runny sauce consistency, and smells and tastes aromatic and spicy. It transports one back to South East Asia and goes well with rice. You can cook it with meat, fish or vegetables too.

At Take 5 cafe we have cooked Thai green curries for 14 years because it is constantly in high demand! It runs out before I can shop for, and cook the next batch!

Cooking a Thai curry is however a tricky business because it is akin to juggling many balls at the same time as it involves the art of balancing and pulling together opposite tastes(like sweet and sour) in fusion-like eruption, that is tantalising to the taste buds.

A common mistake chefs make is to assume that the secret of a Thai curry lies in creating your own ‘home-made’ paste( a romanticist idea they import from their understanding of Indian cooking). This is fallacy more than fact because 1) a good Thai green curry involves 3 pastes not 1 paste as I will explain below 2) the Tthai paste you get in a jar imported from Thailand has got more ingredients sourced cheaply there, than you might possibly buy in the UK at high prices, and this paste does not result in an inferior curry as happens in Indian cooking using ready sauces. In fact the paste has the right quantity of ingredients all properly combined together and, 3) It deflects attention from the real problem which is to focus on the balancing acts you need to perform as you are cooking a Thai curry. I will elaborate on this below.

1)A Thai curry involves 3 pastes. Paste A is a greeny thick paste which you can buy ready made, preferably made in Thailand. This is the paste people focus, on trying to recreate it on their own, and in the process neglect a lot of steps involving Paste B and Paste C . Paste B is the evolving paste that you create from start to finish which along the line will involve using Paste A, in one of its spiralling steps. Its all the steps of Paste B that you really need to pay attention to, as I will explain.

2)Paste A involves a load of ingredients that can be hard to obtain and are expensive and fiddly too like krachai, fresh turmeric, etc. You need to buy them separately usually and end up having to freeze the rest. You also spend a long time trying to peel and blend them to the right consistency as well as taste very close to the imported jars of ready paste. That’s why the most reputable Thai restaurants use these ready green jars of paste A.

3)Given that creating your own Paste A is not crucial, a ready jar helps you to focus on the balancing act to create the prefect sauce.

Below is my simple, time tested recipe secret that my customers have consistently loved.

Do a shopping at a oriental supermarket buying a small plastic jar of thai green curry paste, a small packet of kaffir lime leaves, a tiny amount of galangal , a couple of shoots of lemongrass, a small jar of non concentrated tamarind paste, coriander, shallots or just normal onion, palm or just white sugar, green cilies of your own fancy, coconut milk, dessicated coconut, 1 lime. and eith some chicken breasts diced or a medley of vegetables. a jar of thai fish sauce, a few basil leaves.

1)Fry together in a kwok, gently for 3 minutes, 1 small onion, some garlic paste, the lemongrass shoots chopped small, an inch or more of the galangal chopped fine or pounded, about 7-10 lime leaves(tear a few into half too), and 2-3 finely chopped green chillies, and a few chopped basil leaves.

2)Add to the kwok, a dollup(1 to 2 tablespoons) of the paste you bought, about 5-6 drops of fish sauce, and 2 -3 tablespoons of the tamarind paste, and fry over gentle heat for about 3-4 minutes till you smell the flavours, and the mixture turning slightly darker.

3)Next, add the diced meat or vegetables and stir through gently for 2 minutes.

4)Now add the coconut milk can to this simmering mixture and another too, if its too thick. Add 1/2 to 1/3 small cup of hot water too. Stir slowly till you see the mixture beginning to boil. Now reduce the fire to minimum and allow to simmer

5) In the meantime, use a small spice mill type of blender(which does not require water) to blend half a cup of dessicated coconut and half a cup of finely chopped coriander leaves. Make this into a fine pastely green paste(Paste C) and keep aside

6) Now back to your simmering mixture, taste that the meat or vegetables are cooked and add a tablespoon of sugar, and squeeze in
half a lime too, and a few more chopped basil leaves. Gently stir in, then add then Paste C you just blended. Stir it in and after 30 seconds the entire curry will turn very green. Switch off fire and serve with warm rice. Thai pandan/jasmine rice is ideal but you can use any other rice too.

Tips: 1)If you are not a vegan, add some extra thick double cream towards the end for extra creaminess, 2)A vegan version of Paste A should be available and omit the fish sauce. If not blend together a small onion or a few shallots, a little galangal, krachai, lemongrass, green chillies, few leaves of basil, ginger, garlic, lime leaves, a teaspoon of turmeric powder or some fresh turmeric, 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds. 3) Tweak salt, sugar, lime juice, amount of creamed coconut to create a sauce of your own liking. 4) Ask me at the cafe if you are not getting a nice tasting curry after a few attempts and I will give you a free demo.

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Cooking lentils(dall)

Oct 03 2010 Published by under Recipes

Dall or lentils are high sources of protein and very tasty. They are the staple diet of many homes in South Asia, as they are cheap, quick and easy to cook and can be eaten with rice, bread or any cereal of choice. Accompanied by a meat or vegeterian dish and salad, and preferably a fruit after, they constitute a 5/day complete meal.

There are all sorts of lentils of different colours, shapes and cooking times. In western health shops you can buy lentils like puy lentils. In Indian/Asian grocers, you can buy lentils such as masoor, mung, masr, urud, black, chana, tur etc.

Cooking lentils involves 3 usual steps. Step 1 involves boiling them in plenty of water till they go soft and seem ready for eating. While they are boiling away you can proceed with step 2 which is to prepare a sauce called a ‘tempering sauce’ in English and a ‘turka’ in Indian. Step 3 involves adding the turka into the boiling lentils and stirring gently till they are ready. Understanding this helps you cut across a plethora of different recipes and cook your own lentils. Always garnish lentils at the end with finally chopped coriander and even spring onions. Lets spell this out more thoroughly:

1)When you go shopping pick a few small packets of different types of lentils to experiment.

2)Nowadays most packaging mention boiling times, if not add a reasonable amount of water and boil covered at top temperature, and once they start boiling reduce fire to let them simmer. Remember lentils soak in a lot of water as they boil so you may need to top up water. Check every now and then till they appear to be softened.

3)The basic recipe for a good turka invariably involves frying some onions with a few fenugreek seeds, ginger powder and garlic puree(or fresh cut ginger and freshly crushed garlic) on a medium fire till light golden brown and then adding some canned or fresh tomatoes, and a couple of teaspoons each of turmeric, cili and cumin powders and salt, strirring this till the oil bubbles appear.

4) Now add the turka to your ready prepared lentils and stir in some coriander and adjust for salt, and thickness. If its too runny, boil a bit more or add some crushed cooked new potatoes or teaspoons of arrowroot. If too thick just add more boiling water.

Tips; 1)To the turka for light coloured lentils add some black mustard seeds, some chopped aubergine/okra, a can of coconut milk and a few curry leaves for added taste. 2)To the turka of dark coloured lentils add a handful of dried kasuri methi leaves. 3)Add some blended mustard oil to your frying oil for any turka, 4)use a small pinch of anardana and dried mango powders as well as asotefida(hing) powder and some ajwain seeds for a richer more authentic flavour. 5)Stir in some butter or olive oil at the end of the cooking process to give it a buttery taste. 6) The boiling times for darker lentils like mung and mah, and even chana can be reduced by using a pressure cooker. In the case of chana just 1 or 2 whistles are required. Urud and masoor are best cooked uncovered as they just require 5-10 minutes of boiling.

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Home-made chilli pickle

Oct 02 2010 Published by under Recipes

Chilli pickles bought from grocers can be sour and full of preservatives etc. The following recipe will help you create your own pickles at home. At Take5 we buy some pickles, but do usually make our own for you when we have time. The recipe below is a great favourite I created , which is even loved by my private Asian friends with a ‘classy’ taste!

Make extra jars to proudly share with your friends. Surprisingly this recipe will help your chilli pickle to be not too ‘hot’ but tasty and mild.

Do shopping at local Indian grocers and buy a bottle/tin of blended mustard oil, crushed yellow mustard seeds(or crush them yourself), black mustard seeds, onion seeds, dried mango powder, turmeric, 1 lemon , 1 lime, and a bunch of big mixed red and green chillies, as well as a few rocket(thinner and longer) green chillies. Have some jars ready too.

1) chop the chillies lengthwise into thin strips, without deseeding them. prepare a bowl of these chillies.

2) heat up a small ladle/4 tablespoons of blended mustard oil in a kwok, and add 2 teaspoons of onion seeds, 1 teaspoon of black mustard seeds, 2 teaspoons of crushed yellow mustard seeds, 1/2 teaspoon of dried mango powder, and gently stir till these seeds start popping. Now, reduce the fire to low and wait 1 minute.

3) Next, add the chillies and 2 teaspoons of turmeric as well as salt. Gently stir so that the chilies get coated with the rest of the ingredients in the kwok. Keep the fire reduced so as to not burn the chillies quickly.

4)As you see the chillies beginning to turn colour, quickly squeeze in half a lemon and half a lime. Stir and taste for salt. Squeeze in more lime or lemon juice according to taste. The pickle is nowready and should look shiny, fresh and coated with a yellowish sauce with mustard seeds. Using a tablespoon, quickly spoon the pickle into your jar, cover with a lid and once cooled, refrigerate it. Serve this pickle sparingly especially with Asian food letting people request for more.

Tips: 1)In making this pickle. the fire has to be low else the chillies will quickly turn soft and loose colour. The chillies do not need thorough cooking. They just need to be coated with the other ingredients and take on the taste of the mustard, and shine from the mustard oil. 2) You can variete this recipe by gently frying very thinly cut long pieces of ginger before you add the chillies. 3) Another variation is to add a spoon or half of white sugar, together with the chillies to create a sweet sour pickle.

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Making your own latte

Oct 01 2010 Published by under Recipes

Latte is is coffee topped up with steamed and frothed milk . This is a current favourite hot drink. It is a drink you can make at home even without any expensive coffee machines. You do need to buy a frother, preferably a stainless steel one because glass ones tend to break easily. You also need a small cafetiera and some fresh ground coffee, unless you wish to use instant coffee of your choice which is fine too. You could also use a small home expresso boiler(the screw top ones you use on a stove), for which you need expresso powder. Choose milk of your choice.

As you repeat the steps for making a latte, over and over again you will be able to do this really quickly.

1) Start by pouring boiling water into a cafetiera of fresh ground coffee powder.Use 1 tablespoon of coffee powder/person, and 1 small mug of boiling water /person. I normally use 2 of each in a small 3 person cafetiera so i can make a latte for another person too or have 2 myself. You need to wait 4 minutes before you press down the coffee plunger into the cafetiera

2)After pouring water into the cafetiera, get a mug of milk into your microwave on top temperature for 3 minutes or slightly more till the mug feels real hot on touch and has a film on it.

3)Now carefully and gently pour the milk into the frother and start frothing the milk for a few seconds.Once you see that there are plenty of bubbles and the milk has frothed, get the frother plunger out. Next gently start tapping the frother on one side till you see the bigger bubbles breaking into smaller thicker ones. This creates a layer of very concentrated thick froth. gently stir a tablespoon in this.

4)Now pour your coffee to about half the tallness of your mug and stir in sugar/honey if needed.Using the tablespoon gently pour the frothed milk in. For cappucino sprinkle some chocholate powder over. As you keep practising this, and , observe how this is done when you are in a coffee shop, you will slowly perfect the technique.

Tips:1) Try using muscovado sugar for a deep mysterious flavour. 2)You can flavour your latte by adding some crushed pods of cardamon or cloves or cinnamon or vanilla powder to your coffee powder in the cafetiera. 3)Get your milk really hot, and even pour hot water in all your utensils before you start using them, to end up with a steaming hot latte that will last a while. 4) At the bottom of your frother is where the unfrothed hot milk will be.Thats why you need a tablespoon to get this in too, or else you will end up with only froth on your coffee. This cools down quickly and you end up with a mug that is real light as all the air bubbles out leaving you with hardly any latte. All these are common problems made by staff of coffee shops all over town. I even have to tell them to ‘scald’ my milk to avoid them from serving me a semi cold latte.

I am a coffee lover myself, and I know how enjoyable it is to indulge in a few lattes or go on a latte cafe crawl,(instead of getting drunk in a pub) and am aware that it can be a strain on the wallet. Hence at Take5 we have kept our latte prices very low and do ask me to give you a free latte making demo the next time you drop in, if you are interested.

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Basic tasty Indian vegan curry with pilau turmeric rice

Sep 30 2010 Published by under Recipes

Basic tasty Indian vegan curry with pilau turmeric rice

A vegan Indian curry is very neutral as it can be consumed by anyone whether they eat meat, are vegetarian or are vegan and hence its great for serving at a dinner table for friends and family. A well made and refrigerated curry should last till about 5 to 7 days and hence suits our modern busy lifestyles where sometimes we just need ready food we can warm up after work or studies. Try out the following real simple but delicious nutritious curry recipe created by Jake.

1 chopped onion, a tube of garlic paste (or fresh ground garlic), dried methi(fenugreek) leaves also called kasuri methi(or fresh methi leaves), ginger powder(or freshly ground ginger), cumin seeds,star anise, fenugreek powder, yellow mustard seeds, turmeric powder, chili powder, mango powder, pomegranate powder, ground nutmeg, coriander powder, cinnamon powder, some green or black cardamons, cloves, 1kg basmati rice, onion seeds, olive oil, 3 fresh carrots chopped, 1 freshly grated small beetroot, 2 cans chickpeas, 2 small cans of new potatoes or about 10 freshly boiled new potatoes, either 3 tomatoes or 1 to 2 apples of any variety ripe or unripe, half a lemon, 1 packet baby spinach, chopped fresh coriander.

(The above ingredients are key to Indian food recipes so do store them in your cupboard)


For the rice(start cooking this before the curry):

Wash half the bag of rice gently just once in a pot. Now fill it with water till the water level reaches halfway of the tallness of your middle finger from the surface of the rice resting in the water. Next, place the rice on your stove at top fire, and add to it quickly, a pinch of salt, a pinch of turmeric, a teaspoon of onion seeds, about 5-7 cloves and 3-4 crushed cardamons(or a teaspoon of cardamon powder), and a dash of olive oil. Stir , then cover with a lid. Once you hear it boiling or roughly after about 5 minutes, reduce the fire to minimum low without removing the lid. The rice will cook very slowly now while you get on with your curry.

For the curry:

1) Add a small ladle of olive oil to your kwok on medium fire.Add a dash of blended mustard oil too if you any. After 2 minutes add the onions and chopped carrots, a handful of dried or fresh methi leaves, a teaspoon of ground ginger, and an inch of garlic paste(or 2 tablespoons of garlic-ginger paste), a tablespoon of cumin, and 2 star anise, a teaspoon of fenugreek powder,1 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1 freshly chopped red( or green) chilli or 2 teaspoons of red cili powder, and 1 to 2 tablespoons of freshly grated beetroot. As you keep stirring the mixture continue adding 1 teaspoon of pomegranate powder, i teaspoon of mango powder, 1 tablespoon of coriander powder, 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg powder, and some salt to taste.

2)Next, add the chopped tomatoes or apples . Keep stirring this mixture as it turns from yellow to bright to deep red as in a curry and the apples,tomatoes soften up so you can gently mash them in. Within 10 minutes, oil bubbles should start appearing on this simmering curry sauce. Keep stirring till more bubbles appear. As the ingredients get cooked they tend to release the oil they initially soaked in, and this is a sign of a good curry.

3) Next, add at this stage, the drained cans of chickpeas, cooked new or baby potatoes, the bag of spinach, and the juice of half a lemon. Gently bring this to a boil, and add some hot water if necessary for the desired thickness. Also use a potato masher to gently mash some of the chickpeas and potatoes in the simmering sauce as this acts as a thickener and flavour enhancer.

4)Finally, add the chopped coriander and taste for salt.

Now uncover the rice lid and stir the rice. Serve up on a plate rice and curry and garnish with rocket leaves and fresh rocket chillies or finger chillies.

Tip: A chopped raw onion and some chutney or pickle are perfect accompaniments

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Seasonal Fruit Chutney

Sep 30 2010 Published by under Recipes

Chutneys are tasty accompaniments to any meal usually with a sweet sour fruity hint, very popular in Indian cuisine, and packed with vitamin C. They add flavour, colour, and variety to any meal. You can easily make a jar or a few different jars from different fruits and keep them in your refrigerator for three or more weeks without needing preservatives and colourings.

Before you cook, buy the following ingredients from Asian grocers nearby. These ingredients are useful for other Asian recipes too.

Small tin of blended mustard oil, fennel seeds, packet of crushed red dried chilies, turmeric powder, chili powder, onion seeds, black mustard seeds, pomegranate powder, mango powder, sugar, fresh curry leaves.

Select a fruit of your choice or a mixture e.g 6-7 apples, pears, plums, peaches, nectarines, or a huge papaya or pineapple cut and cleaned or even melon.

1)Get wok on a medium fire, add to it a few curry leaves(optional), 4 tablespoons or small ladle of blended mustard oil. When warmed, add to oil, 1 tablespoon of onion seeds, 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds, 2 teaspoons of mustard seeds, and gently fry these till they start popping.

2)Now add your chopped up fresh fruits, and half a glass of water. To this mixture add 1 teaspoon of turmeric, 1 teaspoon cili powder, 1 teaspoon cili flakes, 1 teaspoon pomegranate powder, 1 teaspoon mango powder, some salt and stir gently. Next cover the kwok and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes checking frequently and adding more water and stirring to prevent burning.

3)When the fruit appears to be softening, use a potato masher or hand blender or just your ladle to press, crush and mix the kwok ingredients so they appear to form a nice chutney texture(thick and soft). Add to this bubbling simmering mixture, a few liberal tablespoons of white, brown or demerara sugar(or sweetener) to create a sweet sour hint. Stir gently(lowerng fire if necessary) for a few more minutes till you feel satisfied with the consistency and salt. You can squeeze in some lemon or lime juice too(or add more mango and pomegranate powders) and adjust sugar to create a nice sweet sour balance. At this stage your chutney will still be a little runny but will get thicker as it cools down.

4)Pour the fresh chutney into jars and label them. When cooled down, store in your refrigerator.

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