What’s in curry?

Curry, the spice mixture, as opposed to dishes that are made with it, is totally individual.  Everyone’s got their own version.  I mix up my own curry because I’m allergic to peppers so I need a mix that doesn’t have any.

I just mixed up a batch this week!   I usually don’t measure anything when I cook, so I’ll apologize in advance for the quantitative ambiguity herein.

  • Turmeric (a lot)
  • Cumin (medium amt)
  • Ground black pepper (I am not allergic to this kind of pepper – around 6 grinds)
  • Ground ginger (small amount) – I add fresh ginger to curry dishes when I’m making them
  • Coriander (ground, small amount)
  • Fenugreek (medium amount) – I usually grind it with a stone mortar & pestle first
  • Celery seed (tiny amount) – I usually grind it with a stone mortar & pestle first
  • Cloves (around 5 – I usually grind it with a stone mortar & pestle first)
  • Caraway seed (between small and medium amount – I usually grind it with a stone mortar & pestle first)
  • Cinnamon – sometimes a small amount, sometimes a tiny amount.

Some other curries I’ve seen had cayenne, garlic and mace in them as well.  I don’t like these in my curry.  Also, I find that I like the curry better if it rests for a few days after mixing, so I usually make it at least 3 days in advance of when I plan to use it, and I make a LOT.  I keep it in the refrigerator, so I only make it about once every 8 months or so.

Afterthought:  anything you’re grinding before you mix it in (like cloves, fenugreek, caraway, celery seeds, etc.) should be toasted first.  It really brings out the flavor.  I usually toast by putting the stuff in a hot, dry frying pan and shaking it around for a minute or two.  When you smell the fragrance of the spice, and it smells really good, that’s when they’re done — THEN grind them.  Don’t just let it sit in the pan — you need movement and flipping and such, because it will burn on one side.


2 Responses to What’s in curry?

  1. […] hrs.) and drained some raw walnuts, put them in a food processor with shallots, carrots, parsley, my home made curry powder and a little sea salt (black truffle salt is even better!) and then rolled it up in nori […]

  2. Lai-Lai says:

    It baffles me….I own & use all the spices used to make curry, yet I cannot tolerate actual curry. There’s nothing in the curry recipe I hate, so I just don’t get it.

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