My Favourite Adaptable Curry Recipe
By Rebecca Bull
When my daughter was diagnosed with her peanut allergy, one of the things that was immediately obvious was that we’d have to change our approach to eating out.
As I did my research, I found out that certain cuisines are more likely to contain peanuts.
My daughter’s first allergy specialist was Indian, and told us that peanut oil is commonly used in Indian cooking and is often referred to as “groundnut oil”.
Since curry is my partner’s favourite type of food and I love it too, I decided to try and make some simple recipes at home.
I started off by recreating one of my favourite recipes – Saag, which is commonly made with lots of spinach. It’s a wonderfully adaptable recipe and can be made without the top 14 allergens.
I sometimes use chicken and if you choose to cook it this way, it would make it a top 14 allergen free recipe. I’ve also made it with Paneer Cheese, which contains milk. In this recipe I’ll describe how to make it with tofu – which contains soya.
SAAG RECIPE – Enough to feed 3 to 4 people
300g of spinach
2 cloves of garlic
1 finely chopped red onion
400g tin of chopped tomatoes
12 cherry tomatoes (chopped in half)
1 tablespoon of Garam Masala
800g of Tofu (contains soya)
3 tablespoons of Greek Yoghurt or a plant-based yoghurt – I use coconut yoghurt
Salt and pepper
- Steam the spinach, or cook it in a couple of centimetres of hot water for 2 to 3 minutes with the lid on – just so it wilts. Then drain it, roughly chop it and set it aside.
- Fry the onion on a medium high heat until it has browned and when it is almost done add the garlic and spices and fry them for a couple of minutes. I prefer to do this in a large wok.
- Add the chopped cherry tomatoes and a little more oil if it is sticking and fry these until they start to disintegrate.
- Add the tin of chopped tomatoes and fry for about 10 to 15 minutes.
- While the chopped tomatoes cook, drain the tofu. Use a clean kitchen towel or kitchen paper to remove as much excess water as possible. Then chop it into 2 cm cubes.
- Remove the fried tomato mixture from the pan and add them to the chopped spinach and let them cool while you start frying the tofu.
- Use some kitchen paper to clean your frying pan and add in some oil. Once it is fairly hot, start frying the tofu in batches. I find it easier to use tongs to turn the tofu over until it has browned on all sides and has warmed through.
- Once your tomato mixture is cool enough, use a hand-held blender to whizz it all up to a thick sauce-like consistency. I like to leave mine a little bit chunky.
- Mix the spinach and tomatoes with the tofu to warm it all up and add whichever yoghurt you’re using.
- Season with salt and pepper to your taste.
I like to serve this dish with rice, naan bread, mango chutney and poppadoms (these contain gram flour, which is made of chickpeas).
Rebecca’s Top Allergy Companions Reviews
Brød, the Danish Bakery, Cardiff
wagamama, Royal Festival Hall, London
Thank you for reading Rebecca’s blog. You can follow her and her stories on Instagram, @allergies_in_a_nutshell.
You might also enjoy reading our other blog, “Cooking with food allergies“.