Last updated: August 16, 2021
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Curry is one of the most popular spices in cooking. What many people don't know is that it is actually a mixture of different spices. The country most associated with curry is India.

In this guide, we have summarised the most important criteria for buying a good curry. We explain what you should look out for when buying curry and which products you should steer clear of. The spicy mixture has a lot to offer and we explain what it contains.




Summary

  • Curry comes in thousands of variations and variations, which is probably one of the main reasons for its worldwide popularity.
  • Curry is especially widespread in Asian cuisine. It is made from a mixture of other spices and ranges from mild to very hot.
  • A good curry is salt-free, uses only selected ingredients and is authentic and intense in taste.

The best Curry: Our Picks

There are many different types of curry and curry products. We have put together a selection of the best products for you that cover every direction. Whether it's an all-rounder, a paste or very hot, we've found out for you.

Buying and evaluation criteria for curry

To help you choose your next curry for you, we've summarised the most important buying criteria to help you decide what to buy. These criteria are as follows:

Now we'll explain what you should look for in the criteria so you can find the best curry for you. You should pay attention to the following criteria:

Composition

Curry is a mixture of various intensely flavoured spices. Contrary to the widespread misconception that curry is a spice in its own right, it is actually a mixture. The mixtures are characterised by different ingredients and qualities.

A sign of low quality is, for example, the addition of salt. It is a cheap filler and never contained in an original good curry. Before buying, check the ingredient list of your curry mix for salt and spices that do not suit your taste.

Spiciness

Since curry contains various spices, including chilli, mustard seeds and pepper, a spicy note quickly comes into the food if you overdo it. The spiciness is usually indicated on the packaging, as it is a typical characteristic of different curries.

You should know your spiciness tolerance when it comes to curry. In this case, hot means really hot and should not be underestimated. The rule of thumb is that the lighter the curry, the milder the flavour. So pay careful attention to the packaging and colour.

Type/colour

The colour of the curry usually already gives an indication of the flavour and degree of spiciness. Curry is a widespread dish, especially in Asia, and is characterised by regional differences. So when buying curry, make sure you know which flavour you want.

In principle, the taste of curries is similar, but there are variations from the Middle East to India and Japan. When buying, you should therefore take into account the flavour you are aiming for and possibly also buy the side dishes accordingly.

Packaging

Curries are usually packed in sachets, but they are also available in jars and shakers. The latter are very good for dosing, but are more for seasoning. The powder is usually removed from the bags and jars with a spoon.

Since curry is mostly imported to Germany, it has a negative eco-balance. So if you are environmentally conscious, you should buy organic products in biodegradable packaging. The jars can also be reused, which makes them practical. For optimal storage, spice jars or zip bags are recommended.

Form

Curry usually comes in powder form, but is also available as a paste or compressed cube. As a powder, the dosage is easiest to control, which is why it is the most common form found.

As a cube, the dosage is usually already predetermined, one cube per cooked dish is the rule here. The cubes have the advantage that they can be stored well. Curry paste, which is mostly found in jars, is a middle ground between good dosage and long, practical storage.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about curry answered in detail

Curry is quite well known, but the correct use of the spice mixture is still a mystery to many people. We have compiled and answered some of the most frequently asked questions about curry.

For which dishes is curry suitable?

Curry can be used very flexibly and forms its own category of dishes. Most are based on vegetables that are cooked together with a flavoured sauce and optional meat or vegetarian or vegan side dishes.

Curry comes in a wide variety of colours and flavours. From grey, yellow, ochre and red, almost all earth tones are included. (Image source: stux / pixabay)

The possibilities are almost endless. It ranges from shredded chicken with rice to casseroles, soups, marinades and stews to curry sausage, which is popular in Germany. It is suitable for both simple and elaborate dishes.

What types of curry are there?

Since curry is very widespread, especially in Asian cuisine, but also worldwide, different types and regional differences in the preparation of curry have developed over time. Most of the time, curries are named after their respective region of origin.

The most common types of curry are the spicy red Thai curry, the milder yellow Madras curry and the slightly sweet English curry powder. A rule of thumb is that the further east the origin of the curry, the more pungent spices it contains. The further west the place of origin, the milder and sweeter it is.

How do I use curry properly in cooking?

Curry is a spice that is very heat-resistant. This means it can be added quite early in the cooking process. Even a light toasting in a frying pan does not harm the curry powder. Curry unfolds its full potential especially over high heat.

A useful trick is to add fat as a strong flavour carrier. Frying in hot fat or oil can benefit the aromatic flavour of curry. A creamy sauce also lends itself as a flavour carrier for the spice mixture.

Conclusion

Curry is very suitable for cooking a delicious and exotic dish. The powder is also popular for chip shop classics such as curry sausage. It enriches every spice collection and should be found in every well-equipped kitchen.

Whether hot, mild or sweet - there is something for everyone in the large field of curry blends. Basically, attention should be paid to storage and dosage. When deciding what to buy, pay attention to the packaging and degree of spiciness.

(Cover picture: pixabay / Skitterphoto)

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