An Indian Summer

Jack scrapes in under the wire again – –

Things have become a bit strange during the continued pandemic lock-down, to the extent that simply having a few friends meet with us on our back deck (suitably distanced of course) becomes an occasion for celebration. So it was last evening when Kirk, Nancy and Dawn joined us on a late October day when the temp was in the mid 70s (Jack is proud of not putting a possessive apostrophe before the plural ‘s’).

As well as enjoying the balmy night and the wide ranging conversation we also tucked into one of my curries. Wendy is a spice wimp so it’s always good to have others on hand who are into hot foods.

For some time now I’ve made big batches of basic Indian restaurant style sauce and then bagged and frozen it ready to bring out a bag as and when necessary. The recipe is easy and can be found on-line.

This sauce should be thought of as a blank canvas on which you will paint the finished picture. It’s fairly bland and I usually add onions, red and green peppers, and any other veggies going spare. I also decide what additional spices are needed to get to the desired heat (“hot or Indian hot, sir?”). I usually saute the chopped onions in some ghee, then minced garlic, ghost pepper powder and hot curry powder and finally add the sauce and veggies.

Then it’s time to decide what protein will go in, if any. I sometimes just leave it as a veggie curry, but also often add chicken or shrimp. I cut chicken breasts into bite sized chunks then marinade them overnight before grilling in the oven and adding to the curry. I use a chicken tikka spice blend in the marinade. Shrimp is easier but shouldn’t be added until late if it’s already cooked and pink or it will be tough and chewy – in fact I often serve it separately for folk to add if they want or not as they choose.

Just lately, instead of freezing the basic sauce we’ve been canning it – mainly because we have access to a pressure canner and Wendy has become skilled at the process. Personally I find the whole thing pretty scary, as I have never experienced it. In fact I don’t really understand why it’s called canning when it actually involves glass jars!

So now we have twenty eight jars of curry sauce, which should keep me going for a good long time. And Wendy will be eating something else.

2 thoughts on “An Indian Summer

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