Ever since I started trying out Indian curries in 2022, I don’t know how I’d lived my life on only Sunday rice and stew all those years.
Indian curries are sauces made with traditional Indian spices like garam masala, a combination of spices like dried pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander and a mix of other dried herbs. And it can be cooked with meat, tofu or vegetables.
Now, I want to show you the light. On a ₦10k budget, Here’s a list of spicy Indian curries to try the next time you visit an Asian-styled restaurant like Indigo in Lagos or one with Indian options on the menu like Cilantro in Lagos or Abuja..
Kadai lamb curry
If you haven’t tried any curry before, go with this guy. It’s the curry that initiated me into ditching tomato stew. Kadai lamb is a tomato-based curry, so it’s like eating a version of stew that isn’t as spicy. But it’s just as tasty. There was coriander, chopped tomatoes, bell peppers and onions. And that tender lamb shredded into the sauce.
Once you’ve tasted lamb in a sauce for the first time, there’s no turning back. After kadai lamb curry, Lamb rogan josh was the next curry I tried. It has more pepper and onions as the base and is a lot creamier because it has yoghurt in it. I don’t love the creamy coconut taste too much and that’s the main ingredient, but the spicy lamb meat more than makes up for that.
Chicken chettinad is really spicy and packed with ginger and garlic flavours. And like the rogan josh, coconut is a main ingredient in the sauce. Some restaurants like Cilantro serve it with chopped tomatoes, onions and bell peppers.
Goan fish curry
Unlike the thickness of chettinad and rogan josh, with the goan fish curry, you get a much lighter coconut sauce. It goes without saying that to love curry, you have to be okay with the sweet and spicy taste of coconut and tomato-based sauce. But the goan fish curry also has some sour notes to it. Maybe it’s just me, or it could be the vinegar or the tamarind paste.
I have a love-hate relationship with this curry because it’s strictly vegetables. But it’s nice if you’re a cheese fan because it’s a mix of potato dumplings and fried paneer (Indian cheese). Malai Kofta can either be cashew or coconut tomato sauce, but coconut is the most commonly used. Also, note that it’s not as spicy.
I’m not a fan of mushrooms, but this is like malai kofta without cheese or potatoes. It’s vegetarian-friendly and includes green peas, dried fenugreek leaves and coconut milk mixed in an onion and tomato sauce.
This was my least favourite curry to try because I’m not a seafood fan. I’m really just a meat type of girl. But if you’re a seafood lover, kadai prawn curry is just like kadai lamb with more chilli peppers.
Tell me which curry you’re going to try first.
And if you’re absolutely over Sunday rice: 7 Meals You Can Eat on Sunday Instead of Rice.