What is curry? Everything you need to know about it!

What is curry? Everything you need to know about it!

What comes to your mind when you hear the term 'curry'? The delicious and spicy Indian dish, enriched with flavours, spices and herbs? It is drooling, right? Yes! Thinking of when our mothers prepared the best curries of our lives that satisfied our inner food monsters and left us mouth-watering during the whole preparation time is nostalgic. 

Do you know that there is a proven fact that our memory and taste buds are interlinked? Curry is a rare dish that keeps you hooked and forever in your remembrance. But what is curry, precisely? In this blog, you will learn about the curry, its origin, different types, curry powder and brilliant curry recipes you got to try.

An introduction to curry:

A curry dish is made with sauce or gravy and seasoned with spices. Though the choice of constituents depends on the regional cultural and family traditions, the common ingredients that go into a curry are cardamom, coconut milk, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, cumin, fennel seeds, fenugreek, mustard seeds, black pepper, turmeric, chillies, mace, poppy seeds, star anise, curry and bay leaves.
Types of curry include dry and wet. Dry curries leave the curry sticky with all the components used, made with less water or boiled to evaporate all the moisture. Wet curries contain considerable water to bring in a gravy format. For gravy-medium curries, one might also add broth, coconut cream, coconut milk, dairy cream, yoghurt, legume puree, sauteed crushed onion, or tomato puree. What main course can go into the curry? It can be vegetables, non-vegetarian like meat, poultry, fish or both combined.

 Do you know the origin of curry?

The name 'curry' is derived from the Tamil word 'Kari/ கறி', which is also adapted into other Dravidian languages like Malayalam, Kannada and Kodava, meaning sauce and raw or boiled vegetables/meat. It made its first global appearance through a cookery writer Hanna Glasse's book, 'The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy,' in 1747, titled 'To Make a Currey the India Way'. 

But archaeological evidence from 2600 BCE traces that Mohenjo-Daro, an ancient Indus Valley Metropolis's population, used spices like mustard, fennel, cumin and tamarind to flavour foods. In the 15th century, the Mughal Empire in the North also showed proof of the preparation of curry recipes. In Great Britain, the British served curry in coffee houses in 1809, and with increased popularity, it has now become an impeccable part of international fusion cuisine. 

Types of curry in India you need to know:

What makes Indian curry so delicious? It is because Indians toast and ground the spices into curry powder. Being home to different varieties of curries, here are the top six curries you should know, as recommended by Cookd. 

1. Korma:


Indians and their love for yoghurt are irreplaceable. Indian korma consists of the base spices and the added yoghurt for cooling essence. One can use vegetables or meat and add yoghurt, garam masala powder and the exclusive curry powder to the mix. The usage of dairy works magic and makes the dish look rich and creamy. 

2. Vindaloo:


Hailing from the Portuguese colony of Goa, Vindaloo is primarily made with pork and added sweet tamarind, warm spices, cardamon, black pepper and hot chillies. The hot yet tangy dish is incredible and entirely delicious. 

3. Saag:


If there is a curry, especially for green leafy vegetables, it will be Saag ever. It is a delightful yet hot dish made with Spinach, kale, collards, chard and other green leaves and added chicken, yoghurt and spices. 

4. Tikka Masala:

chicken tikka

Do you know that the popular Indian dish, Tikka masala, is also the national dish of England? How can we exclude the curry, which people from other countries applaud? Tikka masala is universal and made of chicken, yoghurt, garlic, and lime and cooked in a tandoori on a skewer. It is a comforting creamy and mild-spiced food. 

5. Jalfrezi:


Known as one of India’s treasured curries, Jalfrezi is a dry dish. It has an Indian-Anglo fusion and includes green chillies, cabbage, and tomato in the ingredients list and is stir-fried to bring the mouth-drooling taste. 

Do you know?

In 2015, the Indian chefs and the Culinary Association made a Guinness World Record by cooking the world's largest curry weighing 15.34 tonnes (33,838.9lb) in Singapore.

World curries to your table:

With vegetarian and non-vegetarian curries prepared, the dish has reached worldwide, allowing people to explore new things. As mentioned above, there lies a unique factor about curries. You can make it mild, spicy, dry, wet or gravy-medium according to your want, and still, it serves its purpose by tasting delicious. There are different types of curries and we are bringing to you some of the popular curries across the world. 

1. Southeast Asian Curry: 

Southeast Asian Curry

Curries in Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Malaysia and Indonesia taste differently due to the inclusion of local ingredients like lemongrass and lime and the extensive usage of coconut milk and candlenuts. Thailand is also famous for its colour plate, green, yellow and red curry, for every mood. 

Popular curries of Southeast Asia comprise Thai beef Massaman, Burmese Chicken and Kapitan Curry.

2. East Asian Curry: 

east asian curry

Adapting the Indian Curry, Japan made its creativity by adding onions, potatoes, and carrots to the meat. Do you know that 'Curry Rice' is Japan's national food? The exotic dish, massively influenced by the Indian kitchen, has had its taste and following for over 150 years.

Popular curries of East Asia include Japanese Curry, Korean Curry and Chinese Curry.

3. Middle Eastern Curry: 

Middle east curry

It primarily includes dry curries with added flavours like sesame, olives, mint and parsley and spices like sumac and za’atar, making it more unique. A fantastic blend of spices and herbs satisfies your taste buds and makes you want more. 

Popular curries of the Middle East include Kuwaiti curried chicken and mutton and onion curry with whole spice.

4. United Kingdom Curry: 

Uk Curry

With many immigrants, curry has become an irreplaceable food in British cuisine. Would you believe it if we told you that 'Chicken Tikka Masala' is referred to as 'A true British national dish'? Yes! You heard it right. Turmeric is one integral component in the curries they make.

Popular dishes in the United Kingdom include Balti curry, Chicken Tikka Masala and Lamb curry with tomatoes.

5. South African Curry: 

south african curry

A pure and famous Indian South African delicious curry is Durban Curry, and you should taste this at least once in your life. What makes Durban curry the best? The answer is that it is red, made with curry masala, and has sweet spices and curry leaves. The unique blend of flavours leaves the taste on your tongue. 

Other popular dishes in South Africa include Cape Malay curry and beef, chicken and lamb curry. 

6. West Indies Curry: 

west indies curry

Jamaican curry is different from Indian curries because of the usage of vast turmeric, and flavours like pimento, scotch bonnet chilli, and nutmeg. 

Popular dishes in the West Indies include West Indies Curried Chicken, West Indian Lamb Curry and West Indian Vegetable Curry.

Is curry powder and garam masala powder the same?


B). NO

Answer: B 

We get you! With all the names ending with masalas and powders, it might be challenging to differentiate from one another. Though both powders are used to flavour and give colour to the food, they are different. In comparison to curry powder, garam masala has more or less the same constituents except turmeric. 

Summing Up

Curry is not a simple dish but a delicacy with cultural heritage. With a blend of mixed spices and herbs, it is truly a delight to have it with the main course. With Cookd’s exclusive readymade curry masalas, you can elevate your cooking and taste levels. 


1. Why is India famous for curry?

Indian cooking is known for its impeccable flavours and complex combinations. You can customise curries according to your needs. Hence different styles of curries exist and are very famous in India. 

2. What is the main flavour in curry?

Curry includes a flavour of spices like cumin, coriander, red chilli powder, turmeric, garlic and ginger. 

3. What makes curry special?

The lip-smacking taste and unique spices are what make a curry special. Since there is no fixed recipe, foodophiles can play through their ingredients list by trying differently. 

4. What are the three C’s of curry?

The spice blend includes three C’s: Cardamom, Cinnamon and Cloves. When added in a ratio of 1:2:2, the curry mix tastes delicious.

5. What are the six elements of Indian curry?

The fundamental six components of Indian curry include turmeric, cumin, ginger, black pepper, garlic and cinnamon.