Author Topic: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!  (Read 20780 times)

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Offline George

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2005, 11:58 AM »
I think it's excellent, and wish it had been my first curry book
The methods for pre cooking veg make it worth the money

With the greatest respect, how do you know it's excellent before you've tried several recipes, assuming you haven't got that far yet. I would have said Pat Chapman's books LOOKED excellent when I saw the printed word. That's why I bought one. Only one thing counts! Do the recipes work? In Pat Chapman's case - NO!

Regards
George


Offline Yellow Fingers

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2005, 12:18 PM »
It's a good point you make George, but I think in the context in which Pete meant it, he is right. It would have saved me a great deal of experiment and frustration, 20 odd years' worth infact, if this had been the first book I had picked up when embarking on this crazy curry crusade!

I don't know if you have purchased it yet, but I think you'd agree, when we have perused as many curry recipes as most of the regulars here have, you get a feel for which recipes will give good results and which will not.


Offline George

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #12 on: November 23, 2005, 12:59 PM »
I don't know if you have purchased it yet, but I think you'd agree, when we have perused as many curry recipes as most of the regulars here have, you get a feel for which recipes will give good results and which will not.

YF

Good point. I agree one can normally see 'potential' in recipes, and I expect that's what Pete meant, but I made a mistake in thinking that about Pat Chapman's recipes.

I don't doubt (I hope) that this book is a very worthwhile addition to the BIR section of our book collections. I haven't ordered one yet. I guess a key question is how good the 'Kushi Bali' restaurant really is.  Would people around there view it as way above average, one of their favourites, one of the best? Didn't blondie go there? If the restaurant is good, and the book is honest, and the recipes carefully scaled down and tested, then the book must have great potential.

Regards
George





Offline raygraham

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #13 on: November 23, 2005, 02:24 PM »
Hi All,

Well, even if this book doesn't produce the answers for us it has certainly set a debate off and I am sure has inspired many into the pursuit once again.
To me it does give us a few new ideas to play with. Mace for instance is used in many recipes in the "Bombay Brassierie Cook Book" ,Garam Masala for instance. However, isn't a common spice on the shelves at the Asian supermarkets which leads me to believe not widely used by the BIR chefs.

I do agree with Pete in that the recipes are nearer ( or look nearer ) to authenticity than most we see and can understand why he says this book should have been around 20 years ago but I also heartily agree with George how dissapointing Pat Chapmans recipes were even though the books looked the part.

It is interesting that a sort of "Bouquet Garni" of spices is added to muslin then cooked in the base as is the case with certain bases in the "100 Best Balti Book", so puts this book closer to the real thing than most as well.

I believe Blondie rates these recipes fairly highly as he has tried some out. We need to get cracking and at least give this publication a fair crack rather than condem it to the bin before an Onion has been sliced.

As for the Vindaloo. Phall debate do we know actually what difference there should be in taste between these anyway?
I can stand a Vindaloo and know there is a distinct difference in taste in this to a Madras. However, I am not a fan of the Phall but was always led to believe that this step up in strength was only due to increase of Chilie powder alone and not taste as such.
I would be interested to hear from the Phall lovers what differences in taste they are expecting from the book rather than just added amounts of chilie?

The book doesn't have the Jalfrezi which I like but never mind I can live without it.
I shall get cracking soon to see what results can be achieved. If it gives us anything near the curries we are already producing it can't be a bad thing and worth the money we paid.

Ray G


Offline blade1212

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #14 on: November 23, 2005, 02:30 PM »
I must admit, I'm underwhelmed at the recipes in this book. Gut instinct tells me there isn't anyting new. However, I'll reserve final judgment until I try it out - probably worth the money even if it doesn't produce the taste.

Offline slimboyfat

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #15 on: November 23, 2005, 06:26 PM »
I am a bit concerned about the amount of spices (cinnamon etc) that go into the bag for the amount of base you yield, using those amounts if you made any quantity of it you would need a pillow case to put them in !!!

Offline Ashes

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #16 on: November 23, 2005, 06:48 PM »
The balti places ive been to in Birmingham create a different type to the balti you will get in an indian restaurant, I think the point of the book is, to teach you how this chef at this particular restaurant makes his curries. There probably won?t be much new you don?t know already in one form or the other, as this site has pretty much nailed down the BIR curry.

I?m sure it will be worth "what it says it is", but "what it is" might necessarily be what you want.


Offline Mark J

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #17 on: November 23, 2005, 06:59 PM »
Yes, I agree, it is very useful. What is interesting is that the sauce that the meat is pre-cooked in is used in the curries too and not thrown away. I know many of us here have been doing this anyway, but it's good to see the method in print.
Same as in the 100 baltis book and also in dave smiths pre cook method in my cracked it post, indeed good to see this used in print again

Offline pete

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #18 on: November 23, 2005, 09:57 PM »
With the greatest respect, how do you know it's excellent before you've tried several recipes, assuming you haven't got that far yet. I would have said Pat Chapman's books LOOKED excellent when I saw the printed word. That's why I bought one. Only one thing counts! Do the recipes work? In Pat Chapman's case - NO!

Regards
George
Hi George
              I consider it excellent because it summarises 90% of what I have seen in restaurant kitchens already.
If you look at the Rhogan Josh recipe, it is made in two parts like I was shown at Bengal Cuisine.
The base sauce browns the garlic ginger, as the curry base I posted on in2curry (which was copied to here)
The base sauce contains carrot and pepper
Can you remember how controversial the idea of "carrot" was
Have you noticed the newspaper on top of the cooker, too (this was reported by us)
The whole thing just has an authenticity about it
It really is written with a proper restaurant chef
Perhaps the spices might need a tweak to be like your local, and I am a little concerned with Garam Masala in the mix.
Maybe you prefer to use prefried onions & peppers or old oil, but this is the first genuine curry house book I have seen.
I hope he writes a sequel covering more dishes
I would buy it without hesitation.
 

Offline Yellow Fingers

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Re: Just got my Kushi Balti Book!
« Reply #19 on: November 23, 2005, 10:16 PM »
Maybe you prefer to use prefried onions & peppers or old oil, but this is the first genuine curry house book I have seen.

Actually this is what, at least originally, was supposed to differentiate a balti from your run of the mill curry. The original balti idea was that everything was cooked fresh, so no pre-cooked peppers, onions etc. and no re-using of oil. This is definitely the format followed in this book. You'll see that where we would normally use tomato puree for example, he uses chopped fresh tomatoes. There's no pre-fried onions anywhere, it's all finely chopped raw, cooked quickly at the start of the curries.

He tends to use, at most, a couple of TBSP of fresh oil for the curry cooking. This normally gives a different texture to the finished balti style curry, which should retain more of the ingredients texture and not turn out totally smooth like a standard curry.

If you follow the book recipes but want the end result to be more like standard curry house fare, you have to take all of this into account.


 

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