Basic Indian Curry Sauce

Basic Indian curry sauce is going to be your to-go sauce for all your Indian curry side dishes you love to enjoy with any Indian flat bread or rice. With ingredients and spices easily available in your pantry, a bowl of hot, Indian curry (with vegetables, boiled eggs or any meat or chicken) is just a few minutes away.

On most weeknights and sometime weekends, when I need something quick and tasty to dunk my roti, chapatti, some leftover rice or even a slice of bread, this is the basic recipe I find myself going back to.

We Indians love our curry or masala gravy with a myriad of vegetables or meat/chicken/eggs (for the non-vegetarians). Most of the time, it is much easier to just order take out or home delivery from your local neighborhood restaurant for a quick meal, be it a paneer butter masala, aloo tikka masala, lobia curry or mushroom curry.

With my easy and quick recipe for a basic curry sauce, spicy Indian curry, with your own blend of spices, healthy, rich, delicious and hygienic, is just minutes away.

Most Indian restaurants have a basic sauce which they prepare and store. Once they are ready to make a curry, a variety of spices, vegetables and sometimes cooked fish and chicken are added to make different curries. With my quick and easy version of a basic sauce, you can convert your kitchen into your favorite neighborhood Indian restaurant kitchen with a plethora of dishes made from a simple basic gravy.

To a basic onion-tomato gravy,, I have added coriander and my homemade curry powder. You can add your favorite curry powder or any ready made Indian masala powder (be it garam masala, Kitchen King powder, any Kadai masala powder or even a simple Pav Bhaji masala powder) along with cumin powder or any other spice powder you love, to enjoy different flavors in the curry.

Being from the southern part of India (Mangalore, a coastal town with lots of coconut groves) where coconuts are used in plenty, I have added a little grated coconut to the sautéed mixture before blending for an exotic tropical flavor to my gravy. If you do not like coconut, you can omit that and add cashew nuts or even almonds instead.

This version is totally vegan. For a richer curry sauce, use some ghee/clarified butter along with a few tablespoons of cream or yogurt in the gravy.

Have fun trying out different spices and vegetables or meat or chicken for a different Indian curry everyday!

My kids love boiled eggs with their gravy, so it was egg curry today.  I have just added boiled and peeled eggs to the simmering gravy for a delicious, tasty aromatic curry.

For the vegetarian version, I love to sauté some sliced onions, mushrooms and bell pepper and add to the basic gravy. Other vegetables you can add are cauliflower, peas, green beans, baby corn etc. You can even add some paneer (Indian cottage cheese), sautéed in a little oil/butter or even add it fresh for a spicy paneer curry masala.

Today, along with making the egg curry with part of the gravy, I sauteed sliced onions with some chopped bell peppers and added it to the remaining gravy to make a quick thick vegetable curry to enjoy with my rice!

If you have leftover chicken or meat, add these to the gravy, simmer a while and you have an amazing restaurant style side dish ready.

So, what are you waiting for? Rush into your kitchen and make this gravy to enjoy restaurant style Indian curry in the comforts of your own home.spiv

This curry sauce is just enough to make for a single dish which serves 2 to 3 people. Feel free to double or triple and store in refrigerator or freezer in single serving portions for later use.

Other curries you can try are:

Basic Indian Curry Sauce
Serves 3
Basic Indian curry sauce (ready in a "hurry") with just a few simple ingredients readily available in your pantry; gently spiced and aromatically flavored gravy, perfect to make your favorite Indian curry right at home!!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
224 calories
14 g
0 g
19 g
2 g
3 g
162 g
96 g
7 g
0 g
15 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
162g
Servings
3
Amount Per Serving
Calories 224
Calories from Fat 167
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 19g
29%
Saturated Fat 3g
15%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 96mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 14g
5%
Dietary Fiber 4g
14%
Sugars 7g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
24%
Vitamin C
48%
Calcium
4%
Iron
9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 medium onion, sliced or chopped
  2. 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  3. ¼ cup grated coconut/fresh or frozen
  4. 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  5. 1 teaspoon garlic paste
  6. 2 to 3 green chillies/jalapenos
  7. 1 teaspoon jeera/cumin seeds
  8. 2 to 3 cloves
  9. ½ to 1 teaspoon aniseeds
  10. 1 bay leaf
  11. ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  12. 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  13. 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  14. 1 teaspoon curry powder
  15. 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  16. Salt to taste
  17. 3 to 4 tablespoons oil
  18. Coriander leaves/cilantro for garnishing
Instructions
  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large kadai or deep saucepan.
  2. Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds, cloves and aniseeds. Saute on medium heat for a few seconds.
  3. Tip in the onions, ginger-garlic pastes and green chillies and fry on medium heat for a couple of minutes until the onions are soft and the raw smell of garlic is gone.
  4. Stir in chopped tomatoes and mix well. Add a few teaspoons of water and cook until the tomatoes are slight soft and cooked
  5. Add the dry spices; red chilli powder, turmeric, coriander and curry powders; mix well.
  6. Fry on medium heat, stirring often until the spices are lightly roasted. Stir in grated coconut and fry well until most of the moisture is gone and oil starts to ooze from the sides of the mixture.
  7. Remove from heat and let cool. Once the mixture is cool, place in a blender jar and blend to a smooth and fine paste; keep aside.
  8. In the same kadai which was used earlier, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of oil. Once the oil is hot, add 1 bay leaf, garam masala powder and the ground or blended onion-tomato-coconut paste and mix well. Fry on medium low heat for a few seconds. Add salt to taste and about 1 to 1 ½ cups of water (rinse the blender jar and use that too; we don’t want to waste any of the amazing spicy mixture!); mix well and bring to a boil on medium high heat.
  9. Once the gravy comes to a boil, lower the heat and simmer on low, covered for about 5 to 7 minutes until all the flavors have come together. Adjust seasoning and salt along with consistency of gravy (depending upon how thick or thin you want it) and remove from heat.
  10. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro/coriander leaves.
  11. Flavorful, spicy, aromatic basic Indian gravy (my version and a favorite in our house) is ready. Add boiled eggs, sautéed vegetables, paneer (Indian cottage cheese), tofu or any other cooked meat or fish for an amazing side dish to go with any Indian flat bread or just hot, steamed rice (plain or flavored).
  12. With a crunchy, healthy fresh salad or a quick vegetable stir fry, your exotic Indian meal is ready!!
  13. Enjoy!!!!
Notes
  1. This basic sauce is my version which we love in our house. Play around with different spices or any homemade or readymade Indian masala powders (like Kitchen King, Shahi Paneer masala powder, tandoori masala powder, kadai masala powder etc.) to enjoy different flavored gravies or curry sauce for your vegetable or non-vegetarian side dish.
  2. I have made a totally vegan version; for a richer gravy, use some ghee instead of oil and stir in a few tablespoons of cream or yogurt in the final stages of the cooking process; a few cashew nuts can be added to the sautéed onion mixture too.
beta
calories
224
fat
19g
protein
2g
carbs
14g
more
Curry and Vanilla http://www.curryandvanilla.com/

How to make a basic homemade Indian curry sauce or gravy:

  • Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large kadai or deep saucepan.
  • Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds, cloves and aniseeds. Saute on medium heat for a few seconds.
  • Tip in the onions, ginger-garlic pastes and green chillies and fry on medium heat for a couple of minutes until the onions are soft and the raw smell of garlic is almost gone.

  • Stir in chopped tomatoes and mix well. Add a few teaspoons of water and cook until the tomatoes are slight soft and cooked.

  • Add the dry spices; red chilli powder, turmeric, coriander and curry powders; mix well.

  • Fry on medium heat, stirring often until the spices are lightly roasted. Stir in grated coconut and fry well until most of the moisture is gone and oil starts to ooze from the sides of the mixture.

  • Remove from heat and let cool. Once the mixture is cool, place in a blender jar and blend to a smooth and fine paste; keep aside.

  • In the same kadai which was used earlier, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of oil. Once the oil is hot, add 1 bay leaf and the ground or blended onion-tomato-coconut paste, along with 1 teaspoon of garam masala powder; mix well.  Fry on medium low heat for a few seconds. 

  • Add salt to taste and about 1 to 1 1/2 cups of water (rinse the blender jar and use that too; we don’t want to waste any of the amazing spicy mixture!); mix well and bring to a boil on medium high heat.Once the gravy comes to a  boil, lower the heat and simmer on low, covered for about 5 to 7 minutes until all the flavors have come together. Adjust seasoning and salt along with consistency of gravy (depending upon how thick or thin you want it) and remove from heat.

  • Garnish with finely chopped cilantro/coriander leaves.

  • Flavorful, spicy, aromatic basic Indian gravy (my version and a favorite in our house) is ready. Add boiled eggs, sautéed vegetables, paneer (Indian cottage cheese) or any other cooked meat or fish for an amazing side dish to go with any Indian flat bread or just hot, steamed rice (plain or flavored).
  • With a crunchy, healthy fresh salad or a quick vegetable stir fry, your exotic Indian meal is ready!!

  • Enjoy!!!!

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