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Old 08-18-2007, 10:37 AM   #1
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ISO Curry/Corriander help

A friend and I were hanging out the other night and we both consider ourselves pretty decent cooks or whatnot, and we were talking about dishes we like and our favorite ingredients. I was talking about my forays into asian cooking and my friend was into indian at the time, and mentioned curry and coriander which I dont even have right now. I know a sin! right?

Can you help me to better understand these 2 spices/ingrediants and perhaps offer a simple starter dish I should try to get better aquainted?


TIA everyone!

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Old 08-18-2007, 10:39 AM   #2
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Curry is a mixture of spices and herbs, a Masala (meaning mix or powder).

corriander is singular, either the Leaf (best fresh) or the seeds (often roasted and then crushed).

it`s like comparing apples and oranges really.
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Old 08-18-2007, 10:42 AM   #3
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shows ya how much I know.

I kinda figured one of them was a mix I think my friend mentioned it. I suppose my first experiment should be a curry dish. Then a coriander dish, then maybe trying to use them both?

I really never have tried curry, I suppose it would be good with noodles or beef or beef and noodles?
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Old 08-18-2007, 11:31 AM   #4
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Here in the U.S., Coriander is the seed while Cilantro is the leafy part of the same plant. Though they have similar flavors, they aren't exactly the same. Cilantro has the Coriander flavor, but with a substantial cloraphil flavor. It's like mixing corianer with parsley.

Both Coriander and Cilantro are used in a host of Mexiacan foods, as well as many Asian dishes. Coriander and Cumin are used in Chili, Tacos, fajitas, carne asada, etc. But they can also be used to season most poultry and are often combined with sage, thyme, and sometimes with oregano. The flavor is almost smokey, with a touch of sweetness, and tastes of the Earth.

Curry is used in many sauces, and to enhance gravies, pork, beef, etc.

Hope this helps.

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Old 08-18-2007, 12:32 PM   #5
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There are a countless number of currys. They range in heat levels from sweet to fiery hot as well as all kinds of flavors.

Indian currys are very different from Thai currys.
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:25 PM   #6
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a good Starter Indian Curry is Madras.
it`s a nice flavour and light to medium heat in taste/spice.

there`s also Dry or "Wet" curries too, but as long as the curry powder is "cooked out" either is good.
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:50 PM   #7
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Chicken Curry

BBQ Mikey - this is a favorite chicken curry that would be a good one to make the first time.

Curry Chicken with Coconut Milk

1 chicken, cut into chunks
1 TBS chili powder
2 TBS curry powder
1 TBS paprika
1 tsp. cumin
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 white onions, chopped
2 tomatoes, roughly chopped
˝ cup cilantro, chopped
2 TBS oil
1 bay leaf
1 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into small chunks
1 C coconut milk
3 C water
Salt and pepper to taste

**Spiced Rice

Let me start out first thing by saying I added a lot more curry, cumin, and cilantro by the time I had finished cooking this dish – I also garnished after plating with more fresh cilantro. I left out the chili powder but I’m sure it would be good – I was just afraid that it would have a “chili” taste, which I did not want.

Heat oil in big pot and sauté onion and garlic until onion is slightly caramelized. The onion gets nice and sweet when you let it brown a little. This should take about 5-7 minutes.

Add chicken chunks and continue cooking for about 3 minutes. Add all remaining spices and stir for a few minutes. Let this mixture cook until chicken is tender. Add the rest of the ingredients; adjust any seasonings necessary (this is where I always add more cilantro, curry, and cumin).

For each plate I pack the spiced rice (instructions below) in a 1 cup timbale then place upside down in middle of plate and then spoon curry chicken around the rice. You can use an ice cream scoop if necessary.

**Spiced Rice

Caramelize roughly chopped onions in a bit of butter. Once tender and browned add rice and brown. Once rice is beginning to brown add appropriate amount of chicken stock, about 5 – 10 whole cloves, a couple sticks (or 3 or 4 depending on strength) of Mexican cinnamon (I say Mexican because it is less expensive) and salt. Cook until done. Remove cloves and cinnamon. It helps to keep count of how many whole cloves you add
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:57 PM   #8
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kitchenelf:

What if the chili powder was chile powder? that would add heat without the chili taste
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Old 08-18-2007, 02:11 PM   #9
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I never thought of that Andy M. Chile powder is an ingredient of chili powder. I would assume though that the term "ground red pepper" or "cayenne" would have been used if that is what they wanted you to use. Just my thought on it anyway
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Old 08-18-2007, 02:23 PM   #10
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I have a bag of chile powder I bought at the local Indian grocery. No hint of what kind of peppers are in it but it adds some heat. A tablespoon is a lot of chile powder.
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Old 08-18-2007, 02:32 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
A tablespoon is a lot of chile powder.
But it's not chile powder - it's chili powder. So 1 TBS isn't so bad.
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Old 08-18-2007, 02:35 PM   #12
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That makes sense.
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Old 08-18-2007, 03:24 PM   #13
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Thanks guys, I may try this tonight! If not, tomorrow definately. Ill let you know how it goes.

Also, whats the difference between Cumin and Corriander? Tumeric is also something that intrigues me. These are common spices to many dishes and I feel so in the dark, but I am trying to expand my horizons.

Thanks again!
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Old 08-18-2007, 03:28 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQ Mikey

Also, whats the difference between Cumin and Corriander?
That is like asking what the difference is between salt and pepper. Cumin and Coriander both start with C. That is where the similarities end.
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Old 08-18-2007, 03:50 PM   #15
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Ok so heres all I know about curry.

It is a mixture of spices, namely, Cumin, Coriander, Pepper, Heat (as in chili, chile, red pepper etc) and maybe mustard powder or something.

Corriander is essentially Cilantro but dryer and lacking a plant-y taste.

Cumin is an earthy flavor associated with curry?

Correct or add where Im misguided.
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Old 08-18-2007, 04:03 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQ Mikey
Ok so heres all I know about curry.

It is a mixture of spices, namely, Cumin, Coriander, Pepper, Heat (as in chili, chile, red pepper etc) and maybe mustard powder or something.

Corriander is essentially Cilantro but dryer and lacking a plant-y taste.

Cumin is an earthy flavor associated with curry?

Correct or add where Im misguided.

Yes, curry is a mixture of the spices you mentioned and can have many others in there as well, depending on what region your curry dish comes from. It can have fennel seeds, cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, ginger, fenugreek, mace, mustard seeds, cardamom, red pepper flakes...

The yellow you see in the curry is more than likely turmeric versus mustard powder.

Coriander is the dried seed of the cilantro plant (at least to us, here in the US). To me anyway, coriander can have almost a lime type flavor.

Cumin is an earthy flavor. It can certainly be associated with curry but the first thing that comes to mind is Mexican food.
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Old 08-18-2007, 04:13 PM   #17
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Tumeric is more for color. It doesn't do very much in terms of flavor, that is why it is sometimes referred to as "poor man's saffron".
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Old 08-19-2007, 12:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironchef View Post
Tumeric is more for color. It doesn't do very much in terms of flavor, that is why it is sometimes referred to as "poor man's saffron".
True enough. But Tumeric does have a distinct flavor. It is a great addition to veal or poulty based veloute's, adding both color and flavor. The flavor is very subtle, like properly used garlic. You don't really taste it, but it enhances the other flavors. It is also very good when mixed into rice before boiling. It adds a wonderful color, whether you are making a pilaf, fluffy rice, or a risotto.

One thing I did frequently, and still do sometimes, is to open the container of whatever spices/herbs/flavoings I wish to experiment with, and smell them. Then I play with those aromas in my head to see if they work together. This has given me an intuitive sense for putting flavors together and coming out with a dish that tastes the way I want it to taste. Of course, it takes time and experience, and a few mistakes along the way, to develop that talent. But in time, you will find it invaluable.

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Old 08-19-2007, 05:16 PM   #19
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"Chile" vs. "Chili"

I hate to burst everyone's "chile/chili" bubble, but "Chile" is the name of the country. "Chili" is the pepper. There is no "chile" in "chili" powder (unless, perhaps the "chile" was grown in "Chile" - lol!). If "chile" is listed as an ingredient in "chili" powder it's a misspelling, & probably means ground cayenne pepper.

Chili powders come in various degrees of heat & can contain any number of different ingredients (oregano, paprika, garlic powder, ground red peppers - sweet &/or hot), while ground cayenne pepper is just that - pure ground hot cayenne pepper. Two completely different animals & not interchangeable.
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Old 08-19-2007, 06:39 PM   #20
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I hate to contradict you, Breezy, but chile is the pepper and chili is the stew-type dish made with, I guess (I don't like it so I don't make it), ground beef, beans, tomatoes, garlic, onions and seasonings, including chile peppers and maybe chili powder, which is as you described. At least, that's my understanding

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