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India is renowned for its vibrant culture, beautiful scenery and of course, delicious cuisine. From the fragrant spices that fill your kitchen with their aroma to the creamy sauces and flavourful masalas that make every bite an adventure - exploring India's vegan curries is an unforgettable experience. Amidst diverse cultures and cuisines, and among its many appetizing dishes, vegan curries stand out for their distinct flavours and interesting array of spices. Whether you're a vegetarian or not, India's vegan curries are definitely worth exploring.
In this blog, we will explore the fascinating world of Indian vegetarian curries, from their spices and masalas to their more popular dishes. So if you’re looking to expand your culinary repertoire with something new and
exciting, read on!
On listening to the word ‘Curry’ the first thing that you might assume is that it is any special dish, prepared with a specific process. But it doesn’t refer to any dish instead curry means any dish made with ‘Gravy or Sauce’. Curry is mostly referred to as saucy dishes from the Southeast Asian region.
The origin of this word lies in British colonization. They found this name from the Tamil word for sauce ‘Kari’. They are usually enriched with spices and masalas. Curries are a common disease in Indian, Thai, Chinese, Japanese and Southeast Asian cuisines. But Indian and Thai curries have reserved a special place in the culinary world.
Indian curries are known for their bold and complex flavours, which are created by using a variety of ingredients. One of the most unique aspects of Indian cuisine is the use of masalas, a blend of spices that can vary depending on the region or dish. Common spices used in masala include turmeric, cumin, coriander, ginger, and chilli pepper. If you are short of time or don’t know to make perfect spice blends, Ready-made masalas can help you add tempting flavours to the dishes. They are easily available in the market and can save you time and efforts. Also, curries are made in various consistency from liquid to creamy textures.
Indian curries are also cooked with vegetarian ingredients such as vegetables, legumes, and paneer. This makes them a great option for those following a vegan diet. Additionally, many curries can be made mild or spicy to suit
your preferences. Whether you’re looking for a hearty meal or a light snack, there’s an Indian curry to satisfy your taste buds.
Finally, Indian curries are often made with fresh ingredients, such as tomatoes, onions, garlic, and ginger. This allows the flavours of the curry to really stand out.
Indian cuisine is known for its flavorful, robust curries and the presence of fresh spices. From Dal Makhani to Shahi Paneer, let’s explore the delicious vegan curries India has to offer!
Dal makhani is a popular Indian curry made with black lentils, kidney beans, and spices. The dish is often garnished with cream and butter, but can also be made without these dairy products. The dish is often served with rice or naan bread and can be made as mild or spicy as you like. Dal makhani is a great option for a hearty, satisfying meal, and can be easily customized to your taste preferences. If you want to prepare a restaurant-style dish at your home, Dal Makhani Masala can do the task.
Mughlai cuisine has given some exceptional dishes to the culinary world and shahi paneer is definitely one among them. Shahi translates to english as royal and this dish is truly exquisite in every sense.
Shahi paneer consists of fine cream curry infused with paneer (a type of Indian cottage cheese) and a variety of spices. It has a thick and rich creamy gravy made with onions, tomatoes, nuts and cream or yoghurt. The dish is
often served with rice, plain paratha or naan bread. The rich flavour of the dish is due to Shahi Paneer Masala.
Punjabi-style chole masala served with bhatura, naan or roti, this flavour-packed dish has a huge fan base in India. Made with chickpeas simmered in gravy a loaded with mild spicy and tangy flavours. Chole masala is a robust and flavorful dish that is perfect for cold winter days. The spices used in this curry can help to to warm the body and soul. If you are new to Indian cuisine, chole masala is a great dish to start with because it is not too spicy. Relish the true flavours of this Punjabi dish with Chhole Masala.
Rajma Masala, a popular North Indian dish, is made with kidney beans aka Rajma and a variety of spices. The dish is said to have originated in the Punjab region of India. The beans are first cooked until they're soft, and then they're simmered in a flavorful tomato-based sauce. Rajma Masala is typically served with rice or naan bread, and it's perfect for a winter meal. There are many different recipes for Rajma Masala, the most common ingredients include kidney beans, tomatoes, onion, ginger, garlic, garam masala (a blend of spices), and chilli powder. Some recipes also call for cream or yoghurt to be added to the dish.
Bringing the authentic taste of Punjabi-style rajma curry can be challenging. You can use Rajma Masala for the real North Indian feel.
This tangy and slightly sweet dish is made with besan (chickpea flour), yoghurt, and a variety of spices, resulting in a thick and creamy consistency. Serve Gujarati kadhi over steamed rice or roti for a complete meal.
But what really sets Gujarati kadhi apart is its use of fresh ingredients. Most kadhis are made with sour yoghurt that has been sitting out for a while. But Gujarati kadhi uses fresh yoghurt, which gives it a much milder flavour. Additionally, instead of using dried spices, fresh ginger, green chillies, and cumin seeds are used to flavour the kadhi. This gives it a fresher, more vibrant taste.
This dish is the best example of the lip-smacking flavours of Chettinad cuisine. Its use of fresh spices and masalas makes dishes really stand out.
Paneer Chettinad from Tamil Nadu is a rich and creamy dish made with paneer, or Indian cottage cheese, in a spicy tomato-based sauce. This dish is commonly served as a main course or as a side dish and is often garnished with fresh cilantro leaves.
Summing it up:
Exploring India's vegan curries is a delicious and exciting way to enjoy the country's diverse culinary culture. From traditional masalas to more modern variations of classic dishes, there are plenty of options for everyone. Whether you're looking for something light and savoury or something spicy and flavorful, Indian veg curries have it all. So go ahead, and dive into India's unique flavours - you won't regret it!