Curry Recipes Online

Curry Chat => Lets Talk Curry => Topic started by: bhamcurry on November 01, 2019, 11:41 PM

Title: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on November 01, 2019, 11:41 PM
I think I have cracked the BIR secret!

... it's 100% reliable recipes. Add to that "accidentally adding way too much Kris Dhillon base gravy and having to cook it down by nearly half" plus "dammit, not enough salt!" and I had a wonderful chicken Madras tonight. The overly enthusiastic application of KD's base gravy having to be cooked down definitely added a depth of flavour and richness. Tasting the gravy after I took it off the heat made me realise it needed about an extra half teaspoon of salt.

That's it. Nice Madras, delicious pilau rice, all done in around 25 minutes. Rock on  :cool:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 02, 2019, 12:32 AM
Excellent news, BHC — well done !
** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 02, 2019, 03:46 AM
So was it the extended cooking time that gave the good result or was it the additional base.

I’ve found many dishes develop better flavours with longer cooking times. E.g. the extended fry in Westy’s Madras gives fantastic results.

If it was the additional base then could the same result be achieved by use base that had been pre-reduced (concentrated)before use?
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 02, 2019, 12:23 PM
So was it the extended cooking time that gave the good result or was it the additional base.

I’ve found many dishes develop better flavours with longer cooking times. E.g. the extended fry in Westy’s Madras gives fantastic results.

If it was the additional base then could the same result be achieved by use base that had been pre-reduced (concentrated)before use?

I think this also borders on the improved flavours after being overnight in the fridge and reheated, i am sure some form of marination / maturing goes on somehow.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 02, 2019, 12:39 PM
So was it the extended cooking time that gave the good result or was it the additional base.

I’ve found many dishes develop better flavours with longer cooking times. E.g. the extended fry in Westy’s Madras gives fantastic results.

If it was the additional base then could the same result be achieved by use base that had been pre-reduced (concentrated)before use?

I think this also borders on the improved flavours after being overnight in the fridge and reheated, i am sure some form of marination / maturing goes on somehow.

I agree. I made a Chicken Ceylon this morning. It’s been outside to cool and we will reheat it shortly. I’m still not sure though, whether it is the actual time between first cook and reheat or the fact that it gets Heated twice.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 02, 2019, 01:26 PM
I think I have cracked the BIR secret!

... it's 100% reliable recipes.

Can you give us some examples, ideally those that you used on this occasion ?

Quote
Add to that "accidentally adding way too much Kris Dhillon base gravy and having to cook it down by nearly half" plus "dammit, not enough salt!" and I had a wonderful chicken Madras tonight. The overly enthusiastic application of KD's base gravy having to be cooked down definitely added a depth of flavour and richness.

Interesting, because of late I have tended to use less base rather than more, although when I started out I always used twice as much as KD recommends.  I think I need to re-visit that idea.

Quote
Tasting the gravy after I took it off the heat made me realise it needed about an extra half teaspoon of salt.

I am a salt addict, and for me the hotter the curry the more salt required.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on November 02, 2019, 03:43 PM

JalfreziT: I think the reduction of the base, causing the caramelisation of the sugars in the onions and tomatoes is what lends the richness. I dropped the cooked (cold roasted) chicken in for less than 2 minutes just to reheat and that worked out great.

Phil: I have mainly been cooking the recipes from the PDF collated from recipes here. The pilau rice is Bruce Edwards', the dhansak I have been enjoying is Geezahs' "London style", the Madras I made last night was 976Bars version. When we were in Kent last month visiting family I tried a local curry shop (Biggin Hill Spice, if you're interested) and realised that the tarka dal I make from the recipe in the PDF is way better than theirs. They could do with looking up the recipes here!

For spice mixes I am still experimenting, but the fry spice mix from Curry Wizardry by Anthony Goolab is *air kiss* - so simple, but as soon as the scent hits the air I start getting hungry! (1tbsp green cardamom, 10 tej patta, 2 large cinnamon sticks, about 8 grams stick or 2 teaspoons ground). The other spice blends I am making are more or less a hybrid Kris Dhillon / advice from here, along with slight tweaks such as adding a little fennel seed or a whole star anise. It's the usual refinement - this needs a little more earthiness, so fennel or anise - this needs a little brightness, so cinnamon or tej.

As a wise man once said, the fun is in the journey not the destination. The advice from this forum is making my journey a lot of fun.

And don't forget to add a little more salt  :Clown:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: porchy on November 10, 2019, 02:17 PM
Hi All,

Been looking on various websites and reading various books plus this forum for many months/years  adding this, fresh/powdered that, in search of the BIR holy grail, making a really nice curry but always missing that something.

Well guys and girls on my quest I happened to come across Glebekitchen, have a look at their youtube video https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCL_QHxpBll3H0PUASaN6AlQ

You cannot use a non stick pan and cannot double/triple up quantities etc . Using this techinque the most basic combinations taste amazing (less is more) and  enhance the other ingredients (tomato, spinach etc).

In my experience the results of this technique are truly remarkable. No wonder it's been kept a secret.

Have fun and enjoy

rgds
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Secret Santa on November 10, 2019, 05:06 PM
So was the video in any way relevant?
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: porchy on November 10, 2019, 06:28 PM
I have no shill connection or interest in any way to the other site/video but understand your reservation.

After searching for more years than I would like to remember to get the BIR flavour the video gave me the clearest instructions and  reinforces the discussion above e.g. the reduction and caramelisation of the base in the oil by adding hot and slowly, reducing  until the “creators appear in the sauce” (their description not mine) then add some more hot base and repeat the process to layer the flavours.  If you think it's a scam let a few people report back on their results, use the suggested base sauce and follow the technique for the Chicken Pathia/Bhuna....proof of the pudding and all that....

Ignore, use or abuse it makes no difference to me. 2 posts for those who like counting  :omg:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 10, 2019, 07:15 PM
As you were willing to respond to my comments, Porchy, I am happy to retract my suggestion that this was shill posting and apologise if I mis-interpreted your intentions.  I have re-instated your original content to the best of my ability, although I think that you linked to one video whereas I have linked to the channel.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Garp on November 10, 2019, 07:46 PM
The Glebe Kitchen website actually looks quite interesting: https://glebekitchen.com/
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: noble ox on November 10, 2019, 08:05 PM
Not been here for a while but looking in every now and then.
Have been using glebe kitchen website for 18 months the vindaloo and madras are are 10/10 the cooking technique is bang on and explains the cooking temps and when to add what
Once learned it will become easy and second nature
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Secret Santa on November 10, 2019, 08:31 PM
reducing  until the “creators appear in the sauce” (their description not mine)...


As much as I like the idea of multiple gods suddenly materialising in the sauce I think you'll find they mean craters, like in plopping porridge, rather than "creators".  :wink:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Secret Santa on November 10, 2019, 08:36 PM
As you were willing to respond to my comments, Porchy, I am happy to retract my suggestion that this was shill posting and apologise if I mis-interpreted your intentions.

Given the very relevant subject matter in the linked YouTube video I can't help feel you were a bit too quick off the mark here. There is such a thing as over-moderation you know.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 11, 2019, 06:18 AM
I agree, which is why I have already apologised to Porchy for my initial assessment of his contribution, but I did not moderate his post without careful thought — he had joined the forum only that day, and his very first post was a recommendation of a YouTube channel.  The combination had all the hallmarks of shill posting, but I now willingly accept that it was in fact genuine.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 11, 2019, 09:32 AM
The Glebe Kitchen website actually looks quite interesting: https://glebekitchen.com/

Just had a looky, as for looking quite interesting, yes it does straight onto my bookmark list, nice one Mr Garp
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 11, 2019, 09:49 AM
I agree, which is why I have already apologised to Porchy for my initial assessment of his contribution, but I did not moderate his post without careful thought — he had joined the forum only that day, and his very first post was a recommendation of a YouTube channel.  The combination had all the hallmarks of shill posting, but I now accept that it was in fact genuine.

** Phil.

Dammed if you do, Dammed if you don't, water under the bridge, today is sunny, here anyway.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: porchy on November 11, 2019, 12:24 PM
As I say  understand the initial reservation so no major worries. The only reason I posted here was because I got more insight from this site than others, didn't feel I had anything specific to contribute, just about every question answered and debated (and spend too much time on computer at work). I had seen the technique many times but not realised the importance of the sequence and reduction until I saw the video on the glebekitchen site -  so obvious really when the penny eventually dropped. Jedi Curry Master as far as I am concerned the creator was clearly involved in the bland onion soup base to BIR curry miracle   :like:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 11, 2019, 12:38 PM
Many thanks for the further comments, Porchy — much appreciated.
** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 12, 2019, 11:44 PM
Hi all.

Mickyp mentioned he had found glebekitchen from a post here so I thought I'd come and visit. Noble ox and Garp - thank you for the kind words. Porchy - I am glad my video helped you. I run glebekitchen as a hobby just to get people to come back into the kitchen and cook from scratch so you made my day.

Do you remember where you saw me say "creator". As surmised I meant crater and autocorrect has seemingly made me look the fool. I've been looking but there are a lot of posts to sift through.

BTW - I make no claim to have cracked any "BIR secret". I honestly don't actually believe it exists. I've talked my way into a couple restaurant kitchens and I have been cooking a very long time. My way is not the right way. It's just what I have managed to come up with over the years and it seems to work for me.

Cheers,

Romain
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 13, 2019, 12:24 AM
Yay, welcome to you and your creators Romain :smile:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 13, 2019, 03:21 AM
Thanks mickyp! And thank you for pointing me here.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Garp on November 13, 2019, 09:21 AM
Welcome Romain - I'm sure you have a lot to offer this site  :like:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 13, 2019, 10:12 AM
Welcome aboard, Romain — I signed up to your "Glebe kitchen" web site after Porchy had mentioned its existence here, and downloaded your Secrets of the Indian Restaurant Kitchen which I have been reading with great interest.  I have a few minor queries, but in general it is without doubt an excellent resource for BIR enthusiasts such as myself, so many thanks for your generosity in making it available.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: noble ox on November 13, 2019, 10:26 AM
Hi Romaine and pleased to see you here.
There have been numerous debates on this site re secret ingredients v technique.
For me its technique the reduction of base to caramelise the onions.
There is a fine line between burning and getting the sought after aroma pushing it further and when to stop which will come with practice.
Once again thanks for sharing your kitchen experiences
Cracked it at last
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 13, 2019, 03:24 PM
Thank you for the welcoming words.

What I have seen feeds my belief that technique is what matters. The restaurants have the same ingredients available to anyone who visits an Indian grocer. It is a largely level playing field from what I can tell.

Bloom the spices in oil. That is the same whether it's restaurant or homestyle. Make sure they are cooked enough to lose the "raw" taste. Wet ingredients go in after.

There are usually two different bases. One generic and one for creamy dishes like butter chicken. I don't much care for butter chicken so I've never bothered trying to figure out the creamy base.

Tamarind paste is your friend. So is amchoor powder. Delicately sour.

Vindaloo tends to be paste and not spice based. I've seen this more than once. That one took me forever to get through my thick head.

The only thing that dictates the juiciness of chicken (or any protein that isn't taken to the stage of collagen breakdown) is the internal temperature. That's not specific to Indian. It's food science. There is no such thing as sealing in the juices. That is also food science. What you do get from browning protein (or onions) is the Maillard reaction. You can expand the error bars by brining.

Indian food is fundamentally about browning onions. This is also Maillard. The closer you can get to this in the "caramelization" stage the better your curries will taste. You need to balance evaporation against this goal of course.

That's about all I know. No secret ingredients or techniques to offer I am afraid...
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 13, 2019, 09:03 PM
Somewhat confused as to the exact difference between caramelisation and the Maillard reaction, I did some web searching but most of the results appeared to be based on the Wikipædia article.  Eventually I found this one (http://brewery.org/library/Maillard_CS0497.html), which although dating from 1997 and aimed primarily at home brewers, does appear to me to have been written by someone who knows what he is talking about — certainly I feel that I learned a lot by reading it.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 14, 2019, 12:12 AM
That is the chemistry and certainly enlightening for those that want to go deep. For the less scientifically inclined what is important is that it happens and it is important to a lot of cooking.

Simpler view - https://theweek.com/articles/609542/maillard-reaction-most-important-cooking-technique-youve-never-heard
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 14, 2019, 05:16 AM
The only thing that dictates the juiciness of chicken (or any protein that isn't taken to the stage of collagen breakdown) is the internal temperature. That's not specific to Indian. It's food science. There is no such thing as sealing in the juices. That is also food science.

You sir, are a breath of fresh air   :like:
I sincerely hope you stick around.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 14, 2019, 08:55 AM
Hmmm the Malliard reaction, is that what has knocked the “other” site out ?
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: chewytikka on November 14, 2019, 12:53 PM
Welcome Romain
I subbed your blog in 2017 as I thought your Insta style photos were very good,
interesting and well staged.
This is when you were an active member on Les Jones (CA) fake BIR site.
and a non active member here on cR0, under a different avatar of course.

As you live in Canada, it would be nice to see what you can buy locally
from an (Indian Restaurant). I am also curious to know whether you have ever
actually ate British Indian Curries i.e. in the U.K. or is your research simply
from forums and Youtube.

cheers Chewytikka
Acrylamide and the Malliard reaction
Latest scare from the U.K.FSA
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 14, 2019, 10:42 PM
JalfreziT - thank you.

mickyp - I think the problem there was the "over" reaction.

ChewyTikka - thank you for following me. I have had curry in the UK many times - some better than others and for many more years (decades) than I care to admit. I've eaten predominantly in London but also Bath, Birmingham and Glasgow that I can recall off the top of my head. I have also eaten quite a lot of Indian in India and am, in fact, half Bengali myself so have been eating curry since I was about three years old.

The restaurant curry here in Canada is about the same as in the UK. There are some (few) restaurants in Ottawa that maintain a higher standard than I have enjoyed in the UK and some that do not. Pretty much as you would expect.

It's also pretty similar in the US. I would say that while certain specific dishes don't come across the pond, most are pretty well represented here. Some notable exceptions - I have never seen a garlic chilli chicken or achari here.

Since I started cooking BIR in earnest I have largely been disappointed with what I have eaten in the UK. I think I can do better as I'm sure most people who have been at it a while here can.

I am here under a different avatar because I couldn't get the system to send me a password reset email so I created a new account. I would happily go back to my previous avatar (or stick with this one).

Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on November 15, 2019, 08:07 PM
Hi Romain!

I turned to cooking BIR at home because Birmingham, Alabama is a bit far from Edinburgh! When I was back in the UK last month for a family visit I tried the local curry house option. I was not impressed. The basic tarka dal recipe here is fantastic, theirs was bland. The lamb pasanda recipe here looks interesting, theirs was a sweet, cloying mess. Basically, as I said at the start of this thread, the recipes here are legit and reliable and always produce a good curry - which is more than can be said about too many curry houses in the UK.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 15, 2019, 11:35 PM
bhamcurry - that has been my experience as well. That's exactly why I don't think there's a secret. I think anyone with decent technique can take any of the recipes here and turn it into something they would be proud of.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on November 17, 2019, 04:15 AM
bhamcurry - that has been my experience as well. That's exactly why I don't think there's a secret. I think anyone with decent technique can take any of the recipes here and turn it into something they would be proud of.

If there was a "like" option here I'd "like" this comment  :smiling eyes:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 17, 2019, 04:30 AM
Tried Romain’s Saag Paneer yesterday (from Glebe kitchen). Was surprised there was no cream in the recipe, however the result was superb. Slightly hotter and more spicy than my usual ( steveparadox’ s version from the “other” site).
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 17, 2019, 11:21 AM
bhamcurry -  :smile2:

JalfreziT - glad you liked it! I do like Steve's recipes as well.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 17, 2019, 02:13 PM
JalfreziT - glad you liked it! I do like Steve's recipes as well.

I was also very interested when reading your Jalfrezi recipe. The part about charring the green peppers being key. I sometimes pre-scorch the onions and peppers, sometimes not. My Jalfrezi dishes are usually pretty good, but sometimes “better”.... I often put it down to “atmosphere” or “ hunger level” but now I am wondering if this is the missing detail....
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 17, 2019, 02:25 PM
Could be. Or it could be hunger :smile2:

I find it gets you a smoky flavour. For me that's an important taste in a jalfrezi.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 17, 2019, 03:10 PM
We just finished the reheated Chicken Jalfrezi (Richard Holme/MrCk) recipe that I made this morning. I paid special attention to scorching the onion and pepper. Edges were black on onion and blistered on the pepper.

It was good but not the best we have had. For some reason the sauce was thinner than usual and the flavour not quite there. And there sits the problem. There are so many variables when cooking BIR. The fault is of course mine.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 17, 2019, 04:05 PM
I suspect you might have taken it a bit further than I go.

From the jalfrezi recipe - "The key to the smoky taste is to get some blistering of the green pepper skin when doing the initial stir fry. Onions and green pepper go in to hot oil and cook until the edges of the onion turn brown and you start to get a bit of roasted pepper action."

I don't go to the black edges on onions stage. And I only go for some blistering on the pepper skin. Of course,  it could be something completely different as you suggest as well. Cooking is definitely an art.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 17, 2019, 04:26 PM
Joo, I think you’re right, I did take it further than your description.
My failure was elsewhere, in the sauce consistency. Need to think more about exactly why...
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 17, 2019, 05:02 PM
It was good but not the best we have had. For some reason the sauce was thinner than usual and the flavour not quite there.

Perhaps you didn't have the heat high enough? Thinner sounds like perhaps you didn't get enough Maillard?

It's always something...
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: madpower on November 19, 2019, 11:58 AM
The secret is in the mixed powder,i was lucky enough to get some from a Ta,i promised i would not say who i had it off or were from,i had a tblsp off it and i made 2 curries with it,my house smelled like a Ta and all the neighbors commented about that,i would say it tasted better than some of the places around here,i cant believe some people think it is because of the cooking of it,you can watch them from start to finish they are not michelin star chefs they are quite slapdash about it most the time,most of them aint got the expertise or time to wait for a mallard reaction,i think anyone on here could be a indian food chef with their mixed powder
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 19, 2019, 02:17 PM
I don't think that it can reasonably be doubted that if one is going to use a mix[ed] powder (as opposed to using individual spices), then the proportions of the spices in that powder must be important, just as the proportions of the individual spices would be important if one were using just those.  But timing and technique also come into the equation (as does experience).  So for myself I do not believe that "the secret is in the mixed powder" — it plays a part, and depending on the ratio of mix[ed] powder to individual spices, may well play an important part, but everything else comes into the equation as well.  My EUR 0,02.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 19, 2019, 06:02 PM
Agree with Phil.

It’s simply impossible to believe that all the chefs who have ever worked in one of the 8000 Indian restaurants in the UK, over the last few decades, have managed to keep “the secret of the spice mix”.

Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 19, 2019, 06:33 PM
Agree with Phil.

It’s simply impossible to believe that all the chefs who have ever worked in one of the 8000 Indian restaurants in the UK, over the last few decades, have managed to keep “the secret of the spice mix”.

I have been to "local" restaurants and have been able to notice a change in the Chef, also i doubt the ingredients will be the same for each say portion of madras, they will just ride along the row of spice tubs with a chef spoon and chuck it in, so for me its a def NO for any secret.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on November 19, 2019, 07:01 PM
But nonetheless (and I am not arguing with myself, or with those who have agreed with me), if Madpower's BIR was able to supply a better, more balanced, mix[ed]powder than he had been using until then, and especially if it used a higher proportion of ground fenugreek than his normal mix[ed] powder, then I for one would not doubt that he achieved better, more authentic and "BIR-smelling" results than he had previously.

But when MP says "you can watch them from start to finish they are not michelin star chefs they are quite slapdash about it most the time,most of them aint got the expertise or time to wait for a mallard reaction", I wonder whether what might look slapdash to you and I is, in fact, more an indication of their experience.  When I cook at home, especially when I cook Chinese food, I don't measure anything, and someone watching might well say "looks slapdash to me", but I have made these dishes so often that "muscle memory" kicks in, I don't need to think about what I am doing, but I can be confident that the results will be good.  For the better BIR chefs, I am sure this is how it works, but I do not deny for one second that with this county's present hostile immigration policies, it is getting ever harder to find good BIR chefs and standards are falling nationwide.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 20, 2019, 12:20 AM
Every video I have seen and the restaurant kitchens I have been in have all had major fire power under their pans. Heat + sugars + amino acids = Maillard reaction.

My burners are 20K BTU which I believe translates to around 6kw. I run it near flat out once I add my first ladle of base. I quickly googled the output of an industrial cooktop. 30K BTU so 9kw (assuming my math is correct). For sure they are getting it. Caramelization is not the same thing as Maillard.

Not suggesting spicing is not important mind you.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 20, 2019, 05:12 AM
I do not deny for one second that with this county's present hostile immigration policies, it is getting ever harder to find good BIR chefs and standards are falling nationwide.

It's a tricky one Phil.

When you're a member of the EU, the immigration policy pushes you towards recruiting from within the EU (and is supported as that with free movement of labour, no need for work permits, etc.).

If you're not in the EU, it means you (Britain) can decide it's own immigration policy, and take whoever you want, EU or non-EU.

But....if you're not in the EU, you (Britain) don't get such easy access to the large pool of cheap labour, on which many UK businesses have built themselves.

There are no easy answers.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: chewytikka on November 21, 2019, 03:28 PM
Back on Topic
Mix Powder, that old chestnut.  :lol: Methi powder in a BIR Mix powder, just does not happen.
There are loads of secrets in BIR cooking not published anywhere, quite delusional for members to think otherwise.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 22, 2019, 02:13 AM
I'm curious. What is an example of a secret? Surely one or two have been uncovered? I'm sure there are tricks that everyone haven't figured out but I can cook better than curry I've been served in fairly well reviewed restaurants in London (not saying Dishoom here - but 4 stars on google). What do they have that I don't?
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 22, 2019, 05:45 AM
/Pulls up a chair and sits on the edge of it.

I'm also ready and waiting to hear what unpublished secrets CT will share.

I've always (privately) thought it delusional to think that there is some "missing secret". Willing to be proved wrong though  :)
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on November 22, 2019, 04:46 PM
/Pulls up a chair and sits on the edge of it.

I'm also ready and waiting to hear what unpublished secrets CT will share.

I've always (privately) thought it delusional to think that there is some "missing secret". Willing to be proved wrong though  :)


who would have thought my silly, tongue in cheek post would produce such a fascinating conversation!

Having spent a lot of time hanging around the restaurant business, the truth is there is *no* secret technique or spice mix. The results from restaurant cooking are due to professionals using their experience and training, along with muscle memory, to knock out these dishes we all love. If you spend 10 hours a day doing the same thing, you quickly develop a very economical technique... one could almost say "slapdash" technique.... for producing food to the same high standard every time.

That, plus a lot more salt than most people think. Seriously. Add more salt  :Clown:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: jalfreziT on November 22, 2019, 05:41 PM
/Pulls up a chair and sits on the edge of it.

I'm also ready and waiting to hear what unpublished secrets CT will share.

I've always (privately) thought it delusional to think that there is some "missing secret". Willing to be proved wrong though  :)


who would have thought my silly, tongue in cheek post would produce such a fascinating conversation!

Having spent a lot of time hanging around the restaurant business, the truth is there is *no* secret technique or spice mix.

Oh my.  :smile: The casual newcomer will be confused. Three have stepped up with their opinion that there is no secret to BIR. One has stated that “ There are loads of secrets in BIR cooking not published anywhere, quite delusional for members to think otherwise. “

If that’s drunken guff, then I don’t think anyone here will bat an eyelid. But if there’s some truth behind it, the question is why hasn’t the poster made a post detailing all those secrets?

At least then we can try to see if our excellent curries, which many have judged to be better than restaurants, can be further improved...
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Garp on November 22, 2019, 07:43 PM
 :like:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on November 22, 2019, 07:58 PM
Bhamcurry. I got through university working in restaurants so I've seen some as well albeit a long time ago. Muscle memory is exactly right. Prep cooks measure. Line cooks do not.

And agreed. A lot more salt. Not just in curries. Just about every restaurant meal you eat.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on November 23, 2019, 02:18 AM
Bhamcurry. I got through university working in restaurants so I've seen some as well albeit a long time ago. Muscle memory is exactly right. Prep cooks measure. Line cooks do not.

And agreed. A lot more salt. Not just in curries. Just about every restaurant meal you eat.

it's a thing I noticed a while ago - when you watch a video about how to make a restaurant dish, they always seem to drastically mis-state the amount of salt. "Add a teaspoon of salt (adds what looks like a tablespoon)"....
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on November 23, 2019, 08:31 AM
Here am I still waiting for some of "those secrets" to be unleashed,
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: bhamcurry on December 02, 2019, 05:00 PM
Here am I still waiting for some of "those secrets" to be unleashed,

honestly, there aren't any. It's down to reliable recipes, practice, and tweaking the recipe to your own taste.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on December 02, 2019, 08:36 PM
I know lol, it was my wierd sense of humour
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on December 02, 2019, 09:01 PM
Here am I still waiting for some of "those secrets" to be unleashed

honestly, there aren't any. It's down to reliable recipes, practice, and tweaking the recipe to your own taste.

Well, there are no real secrets to Freemasonry, but that doesn't deter some people from devoting their lives to trying to find out what they are !

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on December 03, 2019, 09:12 AM
We are doing the same with Bir but in doing so we dont have to roll our trouser leg up or shake the spoon in a special way
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on December 03, 2019, 10:46 AM
I do find it helps to bare the left breast, 'though (stops the starched shirt from getting turmeric stains on it ...) !
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on December 03, 2019, 11:32 AM
Turmeric, reminds me back in the eighties my neighbours came home with a TA, he tripped and spilled the lot over their new Settee, never got the stain out.
When i wear an apron when cooking i never seem to get it splashed, but 10 secs at the hob without it and........
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Garp on December 03, 2019, 04:22 PM
There are loads of secrets in BIR cooking not published anywhere, quite delusional for members to think otherwise.

Still waiting too, but not holding my breath  :lol:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: mickyp on December 03, 2019, 04:28 PM
Save that for when your frying any of this years crop of hot ???? s
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Garp on December 03, 2019, 07:54 PM
 :owsome:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on December 04, 2019, 04:35 AM
I'm still waiting hopefully. I've been working hard to get a decent biryani in restaurant like times. Think I'm close but a few secrets would be welcome.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Onions on December 04, 2019, 06:31 AM
There are loads of secrets in BIR cooking not published anywhere, quite delusional for members to think otherwise.

Still waiting too, but not holding my breath  :lol:

Indeed. Owned, I think :D
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: noble ox on December 04, 2019, 09:12 AM
I'm still waiting hopefully. I've been working hard to get a decent biryani in restaurant like times. Think I'm close but a few secrets would be welcome.

Romaine. Have you tried KEWRA water a glug towards the end will launch to the next level no matter which recipe used
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on December 06, 2019, 04:11 AM
Noble ox - I did try it and rose water once but found them both too floral for my tastes. I will try kewra water again though on your recommendation.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: George on December 06, 2019, 11:00 AM
I'm also ready and waiting to hear what unpublished secrets CT will share.

I don't believe CT knows any more than the rest of us. Either that, or he leaves key 'secrets' out of his recipes. At least the 'undercover curry' guy (Dave Loyden) told us how he claimed to know quite a lot and maybe Dave's story should be taken with a pinch of salt, too. Certain people here claim to be 'experts' without any insight into how they learned so much.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Onions on December 07, 2019, 04:49 PM
I never thought I'd say this, but




You're absolutely right, George  :cool:
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: pete on December 07, 2019, 06:33 PM
two things I noticed recently which really assisted the BIR cooking at home  flavour. One was using that Basaar spice mix. It's got a strong aroma before cooking. But cooked it really takes over. So even though I've seen spice mix made up in takeaways, and nothing unusual was ever in the mixture, it clearly can play a very big part in a curry's result. I notice that the YouTube posts by Latif are very secretive about his spice mix. Really can't think what it might be though. Probably something silly like tandoori spice mix is added, which we already know about, don't we? The other thing that really affected my curry was the amount of oil used. I suppose I've always been a little conservative in the amount of oil I use in the cooking. But last time I used a lot. This didn't just make the curry greasier, it also had an effect on how it cooked. With more oil the curry gets a LOT hotter while you are cooking it. The resulting curry was really good on flavour and aroma. Easily one of the best I have ever cooked. But going right back to the start of this thread. I cooked an absolutely amazing curry using Kris Dhillons Curry Secret. It was a mushroom and pea curry. I used her gravy but it was very diluted. I had to evaporate  it on a very high heat for about ten minutes after it should have been ready. The trouble is with this curry cooking obsession is that there just isn't enough time for all the amazing recipes that are out there!!
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: romain on December 10, 2019, 11:53 PM
Again, not suggesting I am an expert by any stretch of the imagination...

I got this comment on my blog today. It suggests to me that applying solid cooking technique to the base restaurant concept is at least a significant part of it. This is from someone completely unknown to me. Their email address and reference to Nazir's (not available in North America) make me think UK resident.

"Patak’s really isn’t the one you want if you cheat, Nazir’s is the one, I find Patak’s is quite bitter in comparison. Anyway, great site and info, I’ve worked in an Indian restarant and the advice is spot on. Adjust things to your own tastes, but most of all, enjoy it."
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on December 11, 2019, 09:51 AM
Looks sadly as if Nazir's curry pastes are no longer made ...
** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: pap rika on December 11, 2019, 11:23 AM
https://www.spicesofindia.co.uk/acatalog/Nazirs-Curry.html
Might be worth watching in case they're restocked

Regards pap rika
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on December 11, 2019, 01:32 PM
Three of the six previously stocked Nazir's pastes say "Discontinued by manufacturer. You may like Minara or Rajah brands... : £2.75" — I fear that this is the case for all six.

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: pap rika on December 11, 2019, 02:10 PM
This may be an alternative site, no indication they are not available. Admittedly the labeling is different to the previous site ?

https://www.hdsfoods.co.uk/?s=Nazirs+curry+paste&post_type=product :wink:

Regards pap rika
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Peripatetic Phil on December 11, 2019, 03:44 PM
Yes, found that site earlier today, Pap, when I was searching, but (a) there seemed no way to add any to my basket, and (b) they don't deliver to Cornwall ...

** Phil.
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: pap rika on December 11, 2019, 04:59 PM
Yes, found that site earlier today, Pap, when I was searching, but (a) there seemed no way to add any to my basket, and
(b) they don't deliver to Cornwall ...

** Phil.

 :like: cheers phil
Title: Re: The BIR secret....
Post by: Stephen Lindsay on December 14, 2019, 01:40 PM
I never thought I'd say this, but

You're absolutely right, George  :cool:

I've read this thread and I burst out laughing! Priceless!