Spring? Winter? What the heck is it lately? And today the winter comes back with a vengeance just to remind us that February isn't over.
Winter or no, curry is a wonderful way to warm up. It's not just one thing, of course, it's a whole world of flavours and ingredients and options that can be anything from an elegant dinner to spectacular next day leftovers, meaty to vegan, spicy to mild and every point in between. And we'd like to suggest a range of ways to get your curry on - from dinner out to dinner in.
The Roncy neighbourhood just happens to have one of the finest Indian restaurants in town with the venerable Shala-Mar up near Howard Park. Khalid Bukhari has been serving Torontonians the very best in Indian food for 30+ years going back to his days serving the Yorkville generation of musicians who went on to fame and fortune. The Gatlin Brothers still drop in to see him on every trip to town. Ask him to show you the pictures when you go but be sure to order a plate of his perfect samosas first!
If you'd prefer to cook at home but don't quite have confidence in your south Asian cooking skills just yet, we've got solutions for that too - including some fine cooking sauces from Sherni's - just add meat or vegetables and serve with rice, naan bread and some of our delicious chutneys.
But if you really want to jump in and try making curry from scratch, we've got you covered there too. You can start with some of our pre-mixed spice blends from Arvinda's or Jaswant's Kitchen or make your very own masala with individual spices. After many people asking for it, we finally got organic, fair trade curry leaves in stock as well as organic, fair trade turmeric both from Arayuma. We also offer a complete Indian Spice Kit that includes everything you'll need. Depending on what you're making, we've also got things like lemongrass paste, tamarind, coconut cream, chilli flakes... you name it! And, of course, don't even think about cooking Indian without basmati rice. We carry organic basmati from Lundberg. If you're still a little unsure as to how to make these ingredients work together, one of our favourite places for some YouTube assistance is VahChef - a charming and helpful Indian online cooking show host whose recipes always seem to hit the mark. (Our personal favourite is the legendary dal makhani. It's made with urad dal (a black bean related to mung beans - not black lentils!) and red kidney beans. The cholesterol-lowering effects of those ingredients are counteracted by copious amounts of cream and butter but the results are spectacularly well worth it!
Don't be shy. Explore the world of curry, starting with a trip to The Mercantile!