Friday, 1 October 2021

(Ad) Misty Ricardo's Curry Compendium Cookbook Review

I was recently sent a copy of Misty Ricardo's Curry Compendium by Richard Sayce for review. This is a mighty cookbook, which is full of recipes, hints and tips, but possibly more importantly, explanations and alternatives. It doesn't just give you the 'how to', it covers the 'why', and 'what difference will it make?'

Very differently to any cookbook I've ever used before, many of the recipes also feature a QR code, which will take your smartphone straight to the accompanying YouTube video, so that you can cook along with Richard himself...

Misty Ricardos Curry Kitchen Cook Book Review by Richard Sayce

Richard Sayce is the man behind Misty Ricardo's Curry Kitchen, and this is a compendium cookbook full of British Indian restaurant recipes which featured in his previous books. I may not get out to a restaurant very often, but take away Indian is a massive treat in our house, and I cook a curry from scratch around once a week, so this has to be a winner for us. 

At the beginning of the book is some information about ingredients, equipment and alternatives, and it isn't pretentious. Richard explains that bottled lemon juice will do instead of freshly squeezed, for example. It puts you at ease, because you realise immediately you aren't going to need £48 worth of specially-ordered ingredients to create a meal. 

The recipes have been collected over years of visiting Indian restaurants, and they are multitude. There are 320 pages in this book, and over 80 recipes, with everything from naan bread, raita and onion bhajis, to Rogan Josh and Chicken Tikka, and Mango Lassi. If it's on an Indian restaurant menu, you can probably find it in here... 

Curry Kitchen Cook Book Review Base Gravy recipe page

Everything is really well laid out, and easy to follow, and you also have the option of a YouTube tutorial with many of the dishes. That adds a whole new dimension, and makes this a cookbook which really is accessible to just about anyone, whatever your cooking skill level.

I really like to make a base gravy for a curry - using onions, seasoning and a little veg. It brings real depth to your dish. I was pleased to see mine looked exactly like the photo too!

Simple Curry onion based spicy Gravy in the saucepan

I used the Base Gravy to cook the Simple Veg Curry, on page 202. As with most recipe books (and restaurant menus), the Curry Compendium is split into sections so that you can easily locate what you are after. I actually added Quorn to my curry, which gives me the vegetarian option of creating most of the meat dishes as well. 

Home made indian curry simple vegetable curry in a bowl

Using a base gravy can be really time-saving, because it stores incredibly well, and saves cooking time later. The book has lots of helpful options and tips for cooking in bulk, including a guide to 'scaling up'. The Base Gravy recipe caters for approximately 16 people portions, so I used 1/3 for this meal, put 1/3 in the fridge for another day, and froze 1/3 for later. 

I really REALLY like the Curry Compendium, and the YouTube channel is excellent too actually - no chatter, everything is written on screen, and you can cook along (if you hit pause occasionally). Here's his 15 minute Curry Sauce

ANYONE can cook a really incredibly impressive meal using the techniques and methods given in this book. I just want to make everything, because I can see so many ways in which my own previous curry style can be improved. My 13 and 23 year old sons also want to cook us something too - which is a real winner in my eyes. 

Misty Ricardo's Curry Compendium is out now, priced £24.99rrp - wipe clean hardback, 320 pages, full colour photographs. If you want to get one good all-round Indian cookbook, this has to be a great choice.
At the time of typing discounted to £21 at Amazon (affiliate link). 



I was sent my copy of Misty Ricardo's Curry Compendium for review. Amazon links are affiliate, which earns me a few pence if you buy through my link, but never costs you a penny more. 

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