Is Curry Thai or Indian?

In today’s post, we will talk about the history of curry, we will know its main characteristics and the health benefits of curry.

Is Curry Thai or Indian?

Curry is defined as a condiment originating in India and comprises a mixture of various spices.

The name comes from the word Kari, in Tamil, a language of South India. It is curious to know that Kari was used in India to refer to dishes with sauce, and not to the sauce itself; it was different from Tari, which were dry dishes. The original Curry was a paste and not powder as we know it. A paste that is still used today in Japan and Thailand.

If we talk about Indian cuisine, curry comes to almost everyone’s mind. We face one of the most popular condiments today since it can provide an exotic touch to a multitude of dishes. But contrary to what many think, it is not a spice.

The origin of curry

The word curry comes from Kari, which in the language of southern India’s peoples’ translates as sauce. This area stands out for its wonderful gastronomic tradition, preparing very spicy and spicy dishes for centuries. During the British occupation, the empire elites were surprised by the taste of curry, so they decided to import it with the East India Company’s help.

As we have discussed, curry is not a spice. It comes from the leaves of the curry tree, which loses much of its aroma and color in two or three days. To withstand the long journey, it was essential to find another way to transport it. So the English decided to grind it into powder and mix it with other ingredients.

The result was nothing like the real curry, neither in its taste nor texture, since the original is made up of a mortar’s paste. And although in India, these mixtures were differentiated with different names, such as Garam Massala, they were known only as curry in the West.

What is curry made of?

Western curry has many different varieties. However, the mixture’s main ingredient is usually turmeric, a spice responsible for its vivid yellow color. Cumin, coriander, or fenugreek, one of the oldest medicinal plants known to man, is also common. Cardamom, anise, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, or other spices can be added.

What types of curries are there?

In India, the variety is enormous. We can find curries with mild flavors such as Pasando or Korma, made with coconut milk, cream, and almonds. Some moderate like the Tikka Masala. And other much more intense and spicy varieties, such as Vindaloo or Phaal.

In the US, we don’t usually make so many distinctions. The yellow curry made with turmeric is the most typical in all establishments. However, we can also find red or green curries, which are obtained by including chili peppers in the mixture and lime, basil, coriander, and galangal or blue ginger.

Japanese curry – In Japan, they also have their ways of making curries, which differ from the flavors found in other countries. It is usually more dense, sweet, and not spicy like those prepared in India. It is very common to serve it with white rice or with udon noodles with which it is mixed. 

Curry dishes in Japan usually include potatoes, carrots, onions, and meat, with apple and honey being two of the most typical additions to give it a sweet taste. Its spices include cumin, turmeric, bay leaf, cloves, coriander, cardamom, fenugreek, or nutmeg, among others, being striking that no peppers or hot chilies are used.

Rendang – In Malaysia and Indonesia, this variety of curry is very common, which stands out especially for accompanying beef dishes. This is usually slowly boiled with coconut milk and the spices that make up this mixture, turmeric, chili peppers, ginger, galangal, onion, or lemongrass. 

In this way, the meat begins to gradually unravel while absorbing part of the sauce created, acquiring all the flavors and aroma. It has a small, fresh, spicy aftertaste and is juicy in the mouth when coconut milk is used, which has been reduced by cooking. Although veal is the most common type of meat in which it is used, it can also be used to cook others such as chicken, lamb, beef, vegetables, and fish such as tuna.

Health benefits  of curry

The spices in Western curry provide numerous health benefits. Turmeric is beneficial in ending stomach problems and facilitating digestion. It also stands out for its antioxidant properties, rejuvenating our cells, and speeding up metabolism. And it is highly recommended for people who have respiratory problems.

Conclusions

In this article, we talked about the history of curry, we will know its main characteristics and the health benefits of curry.

So, curry is Indian, and the name of the dish comes from the word Kari, in Tamil, a language of South India. Kari was used in India to refer to dishes with sauce. As we have discussed, curry is not a spice. It comes from the leaves of the curry tree, which loses much of its aroma and color in two or three days. 

If you have any questions or comments on the content, please let us know!

References

Thetakeout.com

Theatlantic.com

Food.com

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Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.

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