What Is A Curry?


The word curry was invented by British colonialists in the 18th century. It refers to a number of saucy dishes flavored with curry powder or curry paste.  
The idea of curry began in India. By the beginning of the 18th century, the Dutch and the British were selling standardized curry powders. At the Universal Paris Exhibition of 1889, a curry decree set the composition of curry as having prescribed amounts of tamarind, onion, coriander, chilli pepper, turmeric, cumin, fenugreek, pepper, and mustard.  
Today, curry powder may also include cloves, cardamon, ginger, nutmeg, fennel, caraway, ajowan seeds, dried basil, mustard seeds, mace, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, saffron or cinnamon. The mix depends on the cook, as curry recipes can be found in the cuisines of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and the Caribbean.  
While there is no rigid definition of “a curry,” many restaurants use it as a generic term for sauce-based dishes that can vary in spice content and heat, and can contain meat, poultry, seafood, vegetables, coconut milk, onions, fresh ginger, kaffir lime leaves and other ingredients. 
Curry powder’s flavors fade quickly, and Indian curry powder is ideally made to order depending on the dish. Madras curry powder is named after the southern Indian region from which it comes. Careful if you’re not used to it, as it tends to pack a lot more heat. 

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