I am incredibly disappointed with Indian food in Berlin. I knew it was going to be a task to find a decent Madras or Jalfrezi but quite frankly – Indian food is no good in Berlin! The food is just a bowl of slop where most of the time I can taste no difference in the same tasteless sauce across all dishes on the menu. Generic is putting it mildly. And as for the spices – well, what spice you may ask? Restaurant owners claim that German’s don’t like things which are too scharf. Well why on earth would you order a Madras? That’s what a Korma is for! The closest I have come to enjoying Indian food is at one restaurant in Prenzlauer Berg but since my husbands suspected bout of ‘food poisoning’ we have stopped going there (I am still wondering if it was simply down to a stomach bug..). So whenever we are back in the UK one of our first stops is to go for a curry, and the pub of course.
I am not saying that British Indian food is authentic but it is known for being pretty good! And while I do love the typical curry house flavours with the naans and poppadoms I can’t ignore the fact that it is incredibly unhealthy. I prefer the spice and freshness to my curry that is easy to make, tastes delicious and is an a healthier option. And of course you don’t need to worry about Germany’s lack of all things spice – so get adding those chillies!
Luckily I have my local Asian store, Asia Mekong, that provide all the spices I need.
- For the curry:
- 2 chicken breasts (roughly cut into chunks)
- 5 tomatoes
- 2 onions (peeled and finely chopped)
- 1 tbpsn tomato puree
- 300ml chicken stock
- Handful of fresh coriander (plus extra for garnish)
- 1 tbpsn fresh grated ginger (for garnish)
- Sunflower oil
- For the paste:
- 3 cloves garlic (peeled and crushed)
- 1 tbspn cumin
- 1 tbspn garam masala
- 1 tspn hot madras curry powder
- 1 tspn dried chilli flakes
- 1 tbpsn fresh ginger (grated)
- 1 tbspn coriander seeds
- 1 tspn black peppercorns
- Juice of half a lemon
- 1 tspn sunflower oil
- For the paste: Lightly toast the coriander seeds and black peppercorns in a pan and then bash them in a pestle and mortar or use a spice grinder. Add them to a small mixing bowl and then add all the other ingredients to make the paste. Mix well with the lemon juice and sunflower oil and put to one side.
- Heat a large pan with 2 tbpsn sunflower oil. Add the chicken to the pan with the onions, garlic and a pinch of salt and cook on a medium heat for a couple of minutes.
- Add the tomatoes to a bowl of hot water. Leave for 1 – 2 minutes. During this time you can add the paste to the pan, making sure it is mixed well with the chicken and onions.
- Gently scoop out the tomatoes and peel the skins off. Roughly chop into chunks and add to the pan. Leave to simmer gently for around 5 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato puree and then pour in the chicken stock. Put on a medium/ high heat and leave to simmer for around 15/20 minutes – giving it a stir regularly.
- Take the pan off the heat and stir in the coriander and a little bit of grated ginger.
- Serve with more fresh coriander, ginger and some lemon wedges.