Grazie, Nadiya Hussain


I’ve said it many times before and I’ll say it again, Italy has some great food. I love the fact that there’s a wealth of great eateries and restaurants around here. I love the fact that it’s mostly seasonal and that our supermarkets haven’t succumbed to the need for all fruit and veg to be uniform. I love Italian food and always have, be it pasta, polenta or pizza but I also like other cuisine. I was introduced to Japanese food by a friend and love it now, I’ve travelled and eaten authentic Indonesian and Malaysian food. I like Thai cuisine and the occasional Chinese meal. But the one thing I miss living in Italy is a good curry.

I went to school with a friend who’s family hailed from Bangladesh so experienced their food and culture, his mother taught me how to make ruti (chapati) and often fed us as hungry teens on homemade pakora or sweet malpua. Living in England there was no need to make a curry at home as there’s a plethora of good takeaways and restaurants, and anyway homemade curry always tastes like homemade. That was until I saw Nadiya Hussain make her 30 minute bhuna on TV and it’s the only one I’ve made that tastes like it was cooked for me not by me. If that makes any sense?

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For Nadiya’s recipe Click here

The only difference to Nadiya’s recipe is, I use red peppers rather than green as I’m not keen on the taste of green peppers, also it gives the sauce a more reddish colour. The recipe makes enough sauce for 4-6 people so when I make it I store half in the freezer, for those days when the desire for curry strikes.

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And strike it did this week, so out of the freezer came a bag of sauce and once defrosted the spices were cooked and chicken was added to create an authentic dinner. This sauce works well with lamb, goat and also veal. I cooked some rice the same way I’ve always cooked it, the way an Afghan friend showed me.

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Many people struggle with rice so I’ll share his method with you as it never fails. Add cold water to the rice to just cover it and bring to the boil, let it boil for 3 minutes then cover the pan and turn off the heat and let it stand for 10 minutes and the rice will perfect as it’ll absorb all the water.

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I added some flat leaf parsley to butter and garlic salt and smeared it onto some Italian flatbread and wrapped it in foil and popped it into the oven for a few minutes as I served up Nadiya’s bhuna and rice and once it was all assembled on my plate I sat down and devoured it with gusto.

So I’m taking this opportunity to say Grazie, Nadiya Hussain for sharing your recipe, now I’ll always be able to have a taste of Bangladesh here in Italy.

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4 thoughts on “Grazie, Nadiya Hussain

  1. Thanks for this, it has make me smile. I’m a Brit living in Texas (who makes the occasional trip to Abruzzo) and in my area Indian restaurants are rare. Like you, I do miss a good curry. I be looking up this recipe. Thanks!

  2. Looks good. I had forgotten this even though I saw the programme. It is one of my conundrums. I cannot get by without a regular curry. I will happily forgo Chinese and other ‘foreign’ food even though I eat most things. I think you can get most spices in the big supermarkets in Lanciano but local to my house you can just about get pepper. Most people grow their requirements. I will be bringing out large bags of curry making components when I make the move permanent.
    Also loved the stinco, something to mask the winter chill
    Regards
    Frank

    • Where I’m from in the UK there’s some superb Bangladeshi supermarkets so whenever I’m over in the UK I drop in to stock up on those essential spices. You’re quite right the bigger supermarkets sell some spices her but they’re just generic blends called curry, it’s difficult getting hold of turmeric, coriander seeds and paprika.

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