Sunday, April 17, 2011

Recipe: Japanese Curry

Japanese Curry is very different in flavour than other types of curry - sweeter and less spicy. Today I've tried to emulate the flavours from scratch rather than using one of the various packet curry mixes.



Ingredients

Spice Mix
3 tsp Turmeric
2 1/2 tsp Corriander
1 1/2 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Cardamon
1/2 tsp Black pepper
1/2 tsp Fennel
1/4 tsp Cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp Allspice
1/4 tsp Nutmeg

Curry
1 Star anise
1 Bay leaf
1 Clove of garlic (finely chopped)
2 1/2 cm Fresh ginger (finely chopped)
4 Carrots
2 Small turnips
1/2 Daikon radish
1 Brown onion (finely chopped)
1 Can crushed Tomato
1 Cup Dashi
2 TB Mirin
2 TB Sake
4 slices of Firm tofu
Pickled ginger to garnish

Roux
2 TB plain Flour
1 TB Ghee

Method
Melt the ghee and add the onion and cook briefly on high heat. Turn the heat down, add a pinch of sea salt and continue to cook the onion until it is caramelised - about 15 mins.
Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant.
Add a small amount of the dashi and scape the carmalised bits of the bottom of the pan before adding the rest of the dashi.
Add the bay leaf and star aninse.
Add the mirin
Add the carrots, turnip and radish and continue to simmer until they start to soften (about 10 mins)
Add the tomato and continue to simmer over a low heat until the vegetables are softened (about another 10 mins).
Add the sake and simmer for a little more while you prepare the roux.
In another pan dry roast the spice mix.
Remove the spice mix from the pan and melt the ghee.
Add the flour and cook until the colour changes slightly.
Once the roux is cooked, add the roasted spice mix (add more ghee if it is too dry).
Add some liquid from the curry to fully dissolve the roux and then transfer the roux/spice mix back into the curry to thicken. You may need to add some water if it is too thick.
Pan fry the tofu slices until browned.

Pour the curry over the tofu slices and serve with rice. Use some pickled ginger as a garnish.

Enjoy with the remaining sake.