I’ve had a few attempts at making korma before, but it never lives up to what you can get at your local Indian restaurant. Unfortunately, that is likely due to your local Indian restaurant going heavy on the cream and sugar, something I wasn’t keen to do at home.
Thankfully, courtesy of the creamed cashew nuts that made this cheesecake so good, you can get the creamyness needed without a bottle full of double cream. Add in a versatile curry base of fried garlic, onion, ginger and chili and your sweetness can come from sweating out their natural sweetness, rather than a few tablespoons of processed sugar.
Feel free to switch up the meat and veges. I haven’t tried this with red meat yet, but I’m sure with a bit of marinating, you could make a lamb korma to rival that Indian restaurant down the road.
Like with the cheesecake, the smoother you can get the cashew nuts the better. However if like me you can’t afford a Kenwood FP980 and your food processor leaves some granules, then don’t fret. You can always strain your creamed cashews and return any residue to the processor for another go if you want it super smooth.
As I mentioned before, the base for this curry is very versatile. You could make a large batch of it and once it is all fried off, let it cool and chuck it in the freezer. It can then be whipped out when you need a delicious, rich curry in a rush.
- 1 Cup raw cashews
- 1/3 cup raw almonds
- ½ can coconut cream
- ½ cup vege stock
- 1 large onion, cut into large chunks
- A thumb sized piece of ginger (peeled, cut into chunks)
- 6 good sized cloves of garlic (peeled)
- 2 red chillies
- 2 Tblsp coriander seeds
- 1/2 Tblsp garam masala
- 1 tsp Tumeric
- 1/2 tsp chilli flakes (more if you want a hotter curry)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp ground black pepper
- 400g chicken (thighs or breasts) cubed
- 1+1/2 Tblsp Tomato Paste
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 2 cups vege stock (you could also use chicken)
- ½ can coconut cream
- 2 large carrots (cut into half rounds)
- 1 head or broccoli (cut into small florets)
- 1 ½ cups of peas
- Toasted cashew nut pieces
- Coriander leaves
- Natural yogurt
- Lemon Juice
Put the cashews and almonds to soak in the vege stock and coconut cream (I try to do this the night before, but an hour plus is fine)
Place the curry base ingredients (onion, ginger, garlic, chillies) in a food processor and blend to a paste. If it is too dry and not combining properly, add a small amount of oil.
Heat some oil in a large pot over a medium heat. Add the pureed paste and fry for about 15 minutes, stirring regularly to stop it catching on the bottom. You are looking to brown the paste, which will add a nice depth of flavour.
While the paste is browning, add the cashews, almonds and their soaking liquid to the food processor and blend for several minutes until smooth.
Also while the paste is cooking, dry fry the coriander seeds over a high heat, tossing regularly, until browned. This helps to bring out their oils and flavour. Grind the seeds to a powder with a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Add the remaining spice mix ingredients.
By this point the curry base should be nicely browned. Add the spice mix to the paste and stir to incorporate.
Turn the heat up and add the chicken to the pot. Fry, stirring regularly, for 2-3 minutes to seal the chicken.
Once the chicken is sealed and slightly browned, add the tomato paste, lemon juice, vegetable stock, pureed nut mixture and remaining coconut cream. Bring this to the simmer and then add the carrots. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Add the broccoli, simmer for another 5 minutes and finally add the peas and simmer for another 2 minutes.
(You can choose whatever vegetables you like really, just add them at different times depending how long they take to cook. I often use green beans and cauliflower as well)
By this point the sauce should have thicken a bit. If you want a thicker sauce, you can either continue to simmer, or add small amounts of almond meal to get the desired texture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Remove from heat, dish into bowls and garnish with toasted cashews, coriander leaves, yogurt and lemon juice.
Make sure you save some for tomorrows lunch!
NB To make this paleo and vegan, simply skip the yoghurt on top.