Chickpea Curry (Chana Masala)

For the main course, Minoo prepared a Chickpea Curry for the spice theme. This is also known as Chana Masala in the Indian culinary term.


This vegetarian curry is loaded with spices like garam masala, cumin and coriander. Minoo served this Chickpea Curry with brown rice.


  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garam Masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 1/2 inches piece of fresh ginger
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped coursely
  • 2 potatoes, cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 20 oz canned chickpeas
  • green¬†chilies, finely chopped ¬†(to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • fresh cilantro for garnishing


Source: via Minoo

Yield 5 servings.


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Simply Curries on Kingsway, Vancouver

Updated: 16th Dec 2014; This restaurant has changed its name to Cafe Madras according to

ChowtimesNoWord32x32This is a complementary meal from Simply Curries.

There is something about Simply Curries that catches my attention. I still remember the first time we had lunch there when they first opened about six years ago. It was brand new then. I think it was the striking yellow-orange color of the place.

A few weeks back, some of you recalled that I blogged about Popular Chinese Cuisine. Walking back to our car from the dinner, we walked passed Simply Curries and remarked that we had been to this place before.

Coincidentally, a week later, a friend sent us an email to check out Simply Curries and said that the owner wanted to invite us to do a review on the place.


Simply Curries is very much a hole in the wall kind serving South Indian food. It is located along Kingsway in Vancouver, between Joyce and Tyne. You will not miss spotting Simply Curries — just look for the large yellow-orange signboard.

Vishy is the man behind this place and I must add, very chatty too.


The interior is very simple but it is painted in bright yellow-orange. I asked if he is a NDP supporter (since he proudly showed me a video of Jack Layton’s visit on his computer). He vehemently said, “No, No, No!” … and then proudly added that it’s painted in the colors of the Indian national flag, pointing to the green on the ceiling.


Vishy said that the theme he wanted for Simply Curries is “keep it simple”. He does not believe in very fancy menus with hard to picture Indian names. He has this 3-step ordering system posted on the wall prominently.

Since we were there on Vishy’s invitation, I asked that he surprise us … just serve us what he wants.


Surprise us he did. He made Curry on Fries for Nanzaro. Hmmm … why have anyone not really thought of this? This was great. I personally prefer curries over gravy with fries anytime. You might want to try this. At Simply Curries, this is $4.75.


The other surprise he gave us was these colorful and marvelous Mini Samosas. You will love this. They came color coded so that you know what it is in them. Green is spinach, yellow is lamb, white is chicken and red is beef. Yeah, I know. I had the same question too about the beef samosa.


We absolutely love this. They are plump, well-formed and made in bite sizes. The skin was crispy with a little spiciness in the skin even. Vishy serves this with tamarind sauce as the dip. We dipped it both in the tamarind sauce and the curries he gave us … they are great. Simply Curries sells this for $5.75 a plate which includes a dozen pieces.

Here is the beauty. You will get this for free if you …


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Curry Seafood Pumpkin Pot

Tanni and Grace paired up to present two dishes in the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen. The first dish is made by Tanni which is Curry Seafood Pumpkin Pot. This is an innovative dish where the seafood curry is stored in a cooked pumpkin where you can also eat the pulp of the pumpkin as well.


Tanni served the Curry Seafood with some spaghetti flavoured with pesto. I’m sure this curry dish is good with steamed rice too.



  • 1 small pumpkin
  • Seafood medley eg. salmon, scallop, prawn, etc
  • 1 onion, chopped to bite-size
  • 3 cloves shallots, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder (more if you preferred)
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric powder
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons chicken powder
_MG_4164_edited-1 _MG_4176_edited-1

Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Indian Curry Chicken

Sujre is new addition to the Gilmore Church Park community kitchen. As far as I know, she is the first member of East Indian ethnic in this cooking club I attend. This is good because this means that we will now have East Indian cooking demonstrations too. True enough, Sujre made an Indian Curry Chicken and two different types of bread to go with it. I am blogging on the Curry Chicken today and will blog on the bread the next two days.


The Indian Curry Chicken was excellent. It has a hint of sourness from the yogurt. The roti (Indian flat bread) is a perfect complement for dipping the curry sauce. This dish is flavourful with the usage of Garam Masala spices but not spicy hot.

I had never really figured out the differences between East Indian curries vs South East Asian curries. I think they are:

  • East Indians uses yogurt to make the curry gravy while SE Asians uses coconut milk
  • East Indians uses tomatoes as an ingredient while SE Asian does not
  • SE Asian curries are almost always spicy hot while East Indian ones are not always so

What do you think … is my perception correct? Can you identify other differences?

Anyway, here is the recipe for Sujre’s Indian Curry Chicken.


Marinate ingredients:

  • 1 whole chicken, cut up, remove skin
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • a pinch of saffron

Other ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon Garam Masala
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 fresh tomatoes, crushed or 1 1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 fresh onions, finely chopped or 3 to 4 tablespoons fried onions
  • 2 potatoes, peeled, cut into 1″ chunk and fried
  • a bunch of cilantro


Garam Masala is basically a mixture of ground up spices. It is usually made up of green cardamon, brown cardamon, cinnamon stick, black pepper, clove and cumin. For convenience, you may just buy pre-packed Garam Masala. However, Sujre showed us the real way to do it with the real raw ingredients.


Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Green Curry Lamb

Tanni is a another talented cook of the South Arm Community Kitchen. This week, she prepared a set menu (printed out nicely and put on display) for the cooking class. Her initial plan is to make a salad and garlic toast as the appetizers, Green Curry Lamb as the main entree and finally a sweet rice soup/congee as dessert. But unfortunately, with the boiling water advisory still on, she decided to drop off the salad as a safety precaution.

I’ll start off with the main entree. Green Curry Lamb. It was a great dish to be served with steam rice. The Green Curry Lamb is loaded with rich flavour from lemon grass, coconut milk and palm sugar.



  • 2 lbs lamb shoulder, chopped into bite size
  • 2 pcs garlic, minced
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons green curry paste (add more if you like it spicy)
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 lbs potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 2 sticks of lemon grass, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons palm sugar
  • 1 can (400g) coconut milk



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Pork with Curry Sauce

Winnie is another talented cook in the South Arm Community Kitchen. Her dishes are usually very elaborate and involve lots of chopping, dicing and slicing.

Winne made three dishes in South Arm’s cooking club meeting. She intended to make four dishes but we do not have enough time for the fourth dish. The three dishes are:

  • Pork with Curry Sauce
  • Vegetarian Tempura
  • Whole Wheat Pancake


The main dish is Pork with Curry Sauce. Winnie made a huge pot and everyone got some to bring home for the family to try. If you like spicy food, you should try this out. Instead of just cooking the pork, she takes the trouble to deep fry the pork. This gives the meat that extra crunch.


  • 1 lb pork, cubed
  • 2 cups diced onions
  • 2 lbs potatoes, cut into chunks
  • 1/2 cup sliced carrot
  • 1/2 cup yellow pepper
  • 1/2 cup red pepper
  • 1 cup bean curd stick, soak in water to soften
  • 3 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 5 cups cold water


  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • a teaspoon garlic powder
  • a teaspoon Chinkiang vinegar
  • a teaspoon Salt-baked chicken seasoning (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons oil


Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Instant Curry Chicken Nyonya Mix

Ben brought back some instant curry mixes from Malaysia during his Singapore-Malaysia trip recently. One of them is this Instant Curry Chicken Nyonya Mix.


I made the Nyonya Curry Chicken and served it together with some nasi lemak condiments like sambal onions, cucumber, fried anchovies and peanuts.



  • 1 package of the Instant Curry Chicken Nyonya Mix
  • 1 can of coconut milk (400ml)
  • 6 chicken drumsticks (600g of cut up chicken pieces)
  • 2 tablespoons oil

Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Indian Vegetarian Curry

My good neighbour, Zee shared with me how to make a vegetarian curry dish. Zee is of Indian descent but she was born in Kenya. The Vegetarian Curry dish is a very versatile recipe as you can use an assortment of ingredients.


For this recipe, Zee used kidney beans and cassava. Cassava is grown for its enlarged starch-filled roots, which contains a high concentration of starch. Cassava is used much like potato.

Click on link below for Ingredients and Cooking Instructions.


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Malaysian Style Curry Chicken

Big chickens don’t peck at small seeds.
~ Chinese Proverb

It’s been a long time since I made chicken curry. Curries are popular throughout Asia and comes in many different version. I think I know where the curry is generally from the color and look of it. The curry I made is the Malaysian style curry which is rich in coconut milk. The curry powder used is what gives the distinctive taste. I used the very popular Malaysian brand called Baba, which is available in the Richmond Public Market.


The origin of the word curry is the Tamil word kari which means a sauce. Curries may be prepared from dried curry powder or from fresh roots and spices. Since curries are very rich in flavour, they are always served with a staple food such as steam rice. In Malaysia, curries are also eaten with bread or roti canai.


IMG_3976_edited-11 chicken, cut into pieces. I used mostly chicken drumsticks as the dark meat is more tastier and tender.
IMG_3971_edited-1This is the most important ingredient in making curry chicken. The BABAs meat curry powder is a blend of assorted spices including coriander, chilli, cumin, fennel, tumeric, dhal, pepper, cinnamon, cardamon, star anise, cloves and other spices.
IMG_3969_edited-1The rest of the ingredients include:

  • 8 to 10 tablespoons curry powder
  • 8 tablespoons water
  • 4 shallots
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 slices ginger
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 tablespoons oil
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • some curry leaves


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