ANGLO-INDIAN RECIPE BOOKS by Bridget White

ANGLO-INDIAN RECIPE BOOKS by Bridget White
ANGLO-INDIAN RECIPE BOOKS by Bridget White

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All the recipes and Photographs on this Site are old Family Recipes and tried and tested by the Author. Please feel free to try out these old recipes, and relish them, but desist from copying and using on other sites without the prior permission of Bridget White-Kumar. Any infringement would amount to Plagarism and infringement of Copy Rightpunishable by Law

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Thursday, August 20, 2015

COCONUT RICE, BALL CURRY (BAD WORD CURRY) AND DEVIL CHUTNEY - DECCAN HERALD 3RD MARCH 2015


















OUR SATURDAY SPECIAL ANGLO-INDIAN LUNCH – COCONUT RICE, BALL CURRY AND DEVIL CHUTNEY
 I was born and brought up in  Kolar Gold Fields, a small mining town in the erstwhile Mysore  State (Karnataka) in South India. Kolar Gold Fields or K.GF as everyone knows, had a large and predominant British and Anglo-Indian population and was known as THE LITTLE ENGLAND in the olden days. Our lives therefore were influenced to a great extent by British Colonial Culture.Our Food habits were typically Anglo-Indian - Breakfast was normally a bowl of Oats porridge, toast with either butter and jam and Eggs. (Sundays saw sausages, bacon or ham on the Breakfast table). Lunch was a typical Anglo-Indian meal which consisted of Steamed Rice, Beef Curry with vegetables, Pepper water or dhal curry, and a vegetable foogath or side dish. Dinner was always Bread or Dinner rolls with a meat Dry Dish, (It was an unwritten rule that we didn’t eat  rice at night). We normally had either beef or mutton every day, fish invariably on Wednesdays and Fridays and Pork or Chicken or Fowl on Sundays.
 My mum was en exceptional cook and even the most ordinary dishes cooked by her tasted delicious. She was very versatile and imaginative when it came to cooking. She would improvise and turn out the most delicious curries and side dishes with whatever ingredients were on hand. Every dish she prepared was delicious even if it was just the basic Rice and Meat Curry that was cooked every day. My mum had a procedure for everything. The onions had to be thinly sliced and the green chillies and coriander leaves chopped finely. Even the tomatoes for the curry were first scalded or blanched and the skin removed, then chopped into bits and strained through a strainer / sieve so that only the pulp was used and the seeds and skin thrown away!!!
 While our everyday lunch was considered simple, lunch on Saturdays and Sundays was special. Saturday lunch was invariably Yellow Coconut Rice, Mince Ball Curry (or Bad Word Curry as the word ‘Ball’ was considered a bad or slang word in those days), and Devil Chutney. My mind still recalls and relishes the taste of the Mince Ball Curry and Coconut Rice that my mum prepared on Saturdays for us. On Saturdays we had only half-day school so we were back home by 12.30 pm ravenously hungry and we’d be assailed by the delicious aroma of the Coconut Rice and the Tasty Mince Ball Curry even before we reached our gate.
 The mince for the Ball Curry, had to be just right, so the meat, (either beef or mutton), was brought home fresh from the Butcher Shop, cut into pieces, washed and then minced at home. (We had our own meat-mincing machine and Coconut Scraper which was fixed to the kitchen table like every Anglo-Indian family in those days. No making of the Mince at the Butchers as it had to be double ground in the Mincer only at home). The ground meat or mince, was then formed into even sized balls along with other chopped ingredients and dropped into the boiling Curry which was meanwhile cooking on the stove. The curry was then left to simmer till the mince balls were cooked and the gravy reached the right consistency.
 The Yellow Coconut Rice was always prepared with freshly squeezed coconut milk, Sometimes, two fresh coconuts would be broken and then scraped or grated. The scraped/grated coconut had to be soaked in hot water and the thick milk extracted. For every cup of rice double the quantity of coconut milk was the right proportion; a little more would make the rice ‘pish pash’ or over cooked, and a little less would mean that the rice wouldn’t be cooked well. So very accurate measurements were required. The raw rice and coconut milk would then be simmered with ghee or butter, saffron or turmeric, bay leaves and a few whole spices of cinnamon, cardamom and cloves till the rice was cooked perfectly. This delightful fragrant Rice preparation formed the perfect mild subtle base of our Saturday Special Anglo-Indian Meal. 
 The Yellow Coconut Rice and Mince Ball Curry (also known as Bad Word Curry) was always accompanied with a typical Anglo-Indian Sauce or Relish known as Devil Chutney.  Devil Chutney is a fiery red chutney or sauce. Its bright red colour often misleads people to think that it is a very pungent and spicy dish, while its actually a sweet and sour sauce, and only slightly pungent. The vinegar and sugar used in its preparation react with the onion and red chilli to produce the bright red colour. Devil Chutney is also known as “Hell fire or Hell’s flame chutney or Fiery Mother-in-law’s Tongue Chutney” due to its vivid colour.
 I would now like to share my mum’s recipes for these three special dishes. They are very easy to prepare.
 YELLOW COCONUT RICE   
Serves 6   Preparation Time 45 minutes
Ingredients
1 pack of coconut milk diluted with water to get 4 cups of milk or 1 fresh coconut grated and milk extracted to get 4 cups of diluted milk
2 cups of Raw Rice or Basmati Rice
½  teaspoon turmeric powder or a few strands of saffron
Salt to taste
4 tablespoons butter or ghee
3 cloves, 3 cardamoms, 3 small sticks of cinnamon and 2 bay leaves

Heat ghee in a large vessel or Rice cooker and fry the spices for a few minutes. Add the washed rice, salt, turmeric and 4 cups of coconut milk and cook till the rice is done.

Coconut Rice is best served with Ball Curry or Chicken curry and Devil Chutney.

ANGLO-INDIAN MINCE BALL CURRY (BAD WORD CURRY)
(Mince Koftas in a coconut based gravy)
Serves 6    Preparation time 45 minutes
Ingredients for the Curry
3 large onions chopped
6 or 7 curry leaves
3 teaspoons chilli powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
3 teaspoons ginger garlic paste
3 big tomatoes pureed or chopped finely
½ cup ground coconut paste
1 teaspoon  all spice powder or garam masala
Salt to taste
3 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon coriander leaves chopped finely for garnishing
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
 Ingredients for the Mince Balls (Koftas)
½ kg minced meat beef or mutton (fine mince)
½ teaspoon all spice powder or garam masala powder
3 green chilies chopped
A small bunch of coriander leaves chopped finely
Salt to taste
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
 Heat oil in a large pan and fry the onions till golden brown. Add the ginger garlic paste and the curry leaves and fry for some time. Now add the chili powder, coriander powder, all spice powder or garam masala powder, turmeric powder and coconut, and fry for a few minutes till the oil separates from the mixture. Now add the tomato puree and salt and simmer for some time. Add sufficient water and bring to boil.
 Meanwhile get the Mince Balls ready - Mix the all spice powder / garam masala powder, salt, chopped green chilies, turmeric powder and coriander leaves with the mince and form into small balls. When the curry is boiling, drop in the mince balls carefully one by one.
Simmer on slow heat for 20 minutes till the balls are cooked and the gravy is not too thick.
Serve hot with Coconut Rice and Devil Chutney.
 DEVIL CHUTNEY (HELL’S FLAME CHUTNEY)
Ingredients
2 medium size onions chopped roughly
1 teaspoon red chilli powder (use Kashmiri Chillie Powder)
1 tablespoon raisins (optional)
2 teaspoons sugar
A pinch of salt
2 tablespoons vinegar
 Grind all the above ingredients together till smooth. If chutney is too thick, add a little more vinegar.
 Serve with Coconut Rice and Mince Ball Curry

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

KEDGEREE - FISH AND BOILED EGGS KEDGEREE - AN OLD COLONIAL FAVOURITE
















FISH AND BOILED EGGS KEDGEREE
Kedgeree is a mildly spiced rice and lentil mix-up which originated during the time of the British Raj. It is the anglicized version of the Indian Rice dish Kichiri or Kichadi. It was originally prepared with fillets or flakes of steamed or smoked haddock (but later salmon, kippers or tuna was used instead) parsely, boiled eggs, nuts, sultanas, rice and lentils. It made a hearty breakfast dish in the early days when it was considered healthy to have a cooked breakfast with all the essential nutrients.

Serves 6     Time required: 45 minutes
Ingredients
½ kg good fleshy fish cut into thick fillets
2 cups raw rice or Basmati Rice
4 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon ghee or butter
3 onions sliced finely
3 green chillies sliced lengthwise
4 tablespoons Red Lentil Dal / Masoor dhal (Or any other lentils)
3 cloves
2 small sticks of cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin powder
100 grams Sultanas or Raisins (Optional)
3 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves
2 Bay leaves
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon chillie powder
1 tablespoon lime juice / lemon juice / vinegar
6 whole peppercorns
4 hard-boiled eggs cut into quarters.

Cook the fish  in a little water along with the Bay leaves and salt for about 5 minutes or till the pieces are firm. Remove the boiled fish and keep aside.
 Add sufficient water to the left over fish soup / stock to get 6 cups of liquid and keep aside. 
Remove the bones and skin from the boiled fish and break into small pieces. Wash the Rice and dhal and keep aside.

Heat the oil in a suitable vessel and sauté the onions, cloves and cinnamon lightly. Add the slit green chillies, whole peppercorns, cumin powder and chillie powder and sauté for a few minutes. Add the rice and dhal and mix well. Now add 6 cups of the fish soup / stock, lime juice / vinegar, sultanas, chopped coriander leaves and salt and cook on high heat till boiling. Reduce heat and simmer covered till the rice and dhal are cooked and slightly pasty. Gently mix in the cooked fish, butter / ghee and the hard-boiled eggs. Cover and let the rice draw in the fish for a few minutes. Serve hot or cold with Chutney or Lime Pickle.