A good curry sauce recipe makes the world of difference to your meal. If you ever wondered what makes authentic Indian recipes so tantalizing, here is the reason the traditional Indian curry recipe. It is not just the variety in Indian food, but the finger licking good gravy that makes the world in awe of Indian cuisine. Yes, it is very easy and sometimes that people think it is just a curry. But there is more to curry than just some spices thrown around. Indian food has evolved for 1000s of years. No wonder our civilization is the oldest. In spite of all the hardships, we did get the balance right even in basic Indian cooking!
Whether it is intermittent fasting, yoga or Ayurveda. There is something magnetic about India. Our cooking is a mix of all tastes sweet sour bitter salty and umami. Our food may be cool or hot but it is something you will go back to time and again. After all, the key to good life is good food. There is something for everyone in Indian cuisine. Be it vegetarian, vegan and non-vegetarian. Surprisingly it is very easy to make a gravy according to your taste and diet preferences. Whether its vegan, vegetarian, non-vegetarian, gluten-free or nut-free.
This curry gravy recipe is quite versatile. Add some water and curry gravy recipe and play around with your veggies. You can just add paneer ,peas and water to make matar paneer. Add your protein for a non-vegetarian curry. You can add this to lentils, vegetables if vegan. If you do not have Indian spices at home, a big spoon of curry powder will suffice too.
What are the types of easy Indian curry sauce?
There are two types of curries or sabji in India - dry and wet. Dry or sabzi/ sukhi sabji is usually made with just spices and vegetables like avial, long melon/ lauki sabzi, gobi masala , aloo beans etc. Generally they are served with roti or flatbreads. Especially in winter , we eat flatbreads at night as eating more rice can cause a cold.
Gravy based curries are those which can be poured with a ladle. These are usually served with rice bowl. Some important ones are kadhi with a base of yogurt dahi ki kadhi or chickpea flour/lentil based Sindhi kadhi , gatte ki kadhi, tari wali sabzi made with mixed vegetables which may contain paneer or dal in it like saag paneer, dal palak, matar paneer , lauki chana dal. Then there are non-vegetarian meat based curries (eggs ,chicken/ fish etc.). Soups and stews like lentil & based gravies like sambar, rasam, amaranth dal, dal makhani ,kulthi dal/ horsegram lentils and bean based lobia masala, rajma , chole etc.
- Sauce pan/ frying pan/ cast iron pan
- Chopper optional
- mortar and pestle
- wooden spoon/ ladle
- Cumin seeds
- Ginger- Garlic
- Turmeric powder
- Coriander powder
- Cumin powder
- Red chili powder
- Garam masala powder
- Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds, chopped ginger, garlic to it
2. Add chopped onions with little salt and mix well.
3. Keep stirring and mixing with a wooden spoon until the rawness of onions disappears
4. Cook the onions until they are nice and brown.
Hint: Do not hurry this step as it makes the world of difference! Depending on how much you cook the onion, there will be a change in taste and texture of the sauce.
5. Now, add tomato paste to it along with some salt. If you want extra red color, add 2 spoons of commercial tomato puree or passata along with fresh tomato paste.
6. Cook for 8-10 minutes, until you can see little oil coming over the gravy. Add all the spices to the gravy and mix well.
7. Stir well and let it come to a boil. Let it simmer for 5-6 mins until it is ready and all flavors come together.
Once the gravy has thickened and you can see oil on the top, thats when its ready
8. Let it cook until you get semi-dry gravy. You can add water and adjust salt,spices if you want the gravy to be be watery.
9. Store in an air-tight container once it cools. You can store it for 4-5 days in a refrigerator or for months in a freezer.
Voila! here is the easy Indian curry sauce recipe. Try and let us know your feedback!
Authentic Indian curry sauce recipe
- Frying pan/ sauce pan
- chopper optional
- Mortar & pestle optional
- 2 tbsp. oil or ghee
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1 piece Ginger large , crushed
- 3-4 cloves Garlic crushed
- 2-3 large Tomatoes pureed, or a can of crushed tomatoes
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder
- 2 tbsp. Coriander powder
- ½ tbsp. Cumin powder
- 2 teaspoon Red chili powder or as per taste
- 2 teaspoon garam masala or as per taste
- Salt as per taste
- Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds, chopped ginger, garlic to it
- Add chopped onions with little salt and mix well.
- Keep stirring and mixing with a wooden spoon until the rawness of onions disappears.
- Cook the onions until they are nice and brown.
- Now, add tomato paste to it along with some salt. If you want extra red color, add 2 spoons of commercial tomato puree or passata along with fresh tomato paste.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes, until you can see little oil coming over the gravy
- Add all the spices to the gravy and mix well.
- Stir well and let it come to a boil. Let it simmer for 5-6 mins until it is ready and all flavors come together.
- Once the gravy has thickened and you can see oil on the top, thats when its ready
- Let it cook until you get semi-dry gravy. You can add water and adjust salt,spices if you want the gravy to be be watery.
- Store in an air-tight jar for 3-4 days in a refrigerator.
For Jain recipes we do not add onion and garlic in the above recipe. If you are vegan, cook the above recipe only in oil. No worries, if you are gluten-free, just avoid heeng or asafoetida. If you are not vegan, you may add ghee or butter to your curry base. You may add ¼ cup of whisked dahi or yogurt to thicken it if you want a yellowish gravy. However, you have to whisk it well. If you do not whisk the curd well, it will show up as white bits in the gravy. If you want to make a thick vegan curry, you may add coconut milk to it.
You can add some cashews while cooking this sauce and blend it once it has cooled down, strain it and use as a base for Paneer butter masala or Butter chicken recipe. Add little sugar if you prefer sweet.
Some people also thicken the above basic sauce using nut paste like cashews or almonds , especially when making meatballs like veg kofta, malai kofta and paneer butter masala. People also add spoonful of besan or chickpea flour to it to give a good texture to their curry like aloo matar. or matar paneer.If you do not have fresh tomatoes, you can use canned ones. You can also use it to make chana saag or chana masala.
Sweet ,salty, sour, bitter, umami are the 5 flavors and the food served may be hot or cool as detected by our tongue making it 7 tastes of food.
Basic Indian curry sauce is made of tomato, onion, ginger, garlic and spices. Some Indian sauce recipes contain tamarind instead of tomato.
You can use coconut milk or yogurt, lentils, corn starch or arrowroot powder or nuts to thicken Indian curry.
Once it has cooled down, Store in an air-tight container or glass bottle for 3-4 days in a refrigerator or in a plastic box for months in a freezer. Its better to store them in batches i.e. in smaller boxes/zip lock packets in the freezer so that you take out only what you need.
Let us know your views on our authentic Indian curry paste. What is your favorite way of making Indian curry? Best Indian curry is definitely homemade!
I bet there is more to curry than when you first thought about it! 🙂