Bhuna Recipe Ideas
“This is the kind of dish that reminds me of our grandmother’s food. She would have kept it very simple, using cheap cuts of lamb (with bones!), no tomatoes but lots of fresh coriander at the end to freshen it up.” Kevin Fernandez
‘Bhuna’ or ‘Bhoona’ is actually a cooking process; the spices are fried in oil to release their flavour, then the meat is added and cooked in both the oil and its own juices, without any additional water. The result is a dry dish with an intense, concentrated flavour. To achieve this result but without all the oil, empty the Bhuna Curry Pack into a dry, large pan and fry it on a low heat. Some oil will be released from the onions in the pack, frying the spices. After this, follow the Curry Pack instructions, but cook with the lid off and on a very low heat.
Because of the dry nature of the curry, the Bhuna is best served with chapatis. You can use a chapati like edible cutlery and easily scoop up every last bit. We have some excellent pre-packed chapatis, but they are so simple to make! Use this recipe to make your own. To complement the Bhuna, we suggest serving it alongside something with a bit more moisture. This could be yoghurt and a tasty dhal (see last months dhal recipes here). However, with spring in full swing, we think the best side dish at the moment is our Coconut Vegetable Curry. This South Indian inspired dish has a simple spice mix including curry leaves, turmeric and garlic. It is all then brought together with coconut milk, lime juice and fresh coriander. For a fresh vegetable combination try using courgette, peas and green beans. Slice the courgette thinly and add the peas at the very end to help keep all the elements crisp and full of flavour.
We’ve gathered together a few recipe ideas from our staff, to help give you a bit more inspiration on how to use your Bhuna Curry Pack. Enjoy!
- Beef - Cook up the sauce and add beef meatballs. Cook for around 20 minutes (depending on the size of the meatball) and then add yellow peppers and green beans. Finish it by cooking for a further 5 minutes, so the vegetables still have a bit of crunch.
- Chicken - Add the chicken into the mix raw and cook the curry as per the instructions. Just before serving, add some wild garlic, which will begin to wilt like spinach when stirred through the curry. Garnish with chopped tomatoes and coriander. Wild garlic can be found in woodland or river bank areas, from early spring. It likes semi-shaded, moist conditions. Follow your nose, the garlic smell is the best clue. But please do thorough research when foraging, and, if you are not sure, don’t pick it!
- Vegetarian Three Bean - Add black eye beans, haricot beans, and kidney beans. Garnish with spring onions, cherry tomatoes and coriander. Serve with yoghurt and chapatis.
- Fish - Cook the sauce and leave overnight. Reheat with the lid off. When hot, add pieces of cod. Turn off the heat, put a lid on the pan and leave for about 8 minutes. The fish will cook in the steam and residual heat from the pan and sauce. Garnish with coriander.
- Lots of fresh coriander and yoghurt.
- Fresh tomatoes and coriander (as per the Curry Pack Instructions).
- Stir fried green pepper. Use a nice, hot pan and fry with a bit of oil and a pinch of salt. Don’t be afraid getting a bit of colour on the peppers, so they have a smoky bitterness.
- Lots of freshly chopped coriander and mint.
- Lightly crushed nuts, toasted in a dry pan. Try cashew nuts, peanuts, and flaked almonds.
- Lemon Pickled Onion - Finely chop an onion and put in a bowl. Add the zest and juice of one lemon, and a pinch of salt and sugar. Mix and leave for at least 30 minutes. The lemon juices will take the rawness away from the onion, leaving a zingy, fresh, and crunchy garnish.