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How To Cook Indian Food In Less Than 30 Minutes

May 2017Words by The Daily Team

Mango pickle-flavoured aubergine. Photograph by Mr Mike Cooper, courtesy of Bloomsbury

Mr Atul Kochhar knows a thing or two about fine Indian food. In 2001, while working at Mayfair’s Tamarind, he became the first Indian chef to earn a Michelin star. He went on to open Benares restaurant and bar in May 2003, for which he was awarded another star in 2007. Mr Kocchar has shown off his considerable talents for British TV on the likes of the Great British Menu, Saturday Kitchen and his own 2010 series, and he has been a consultant chef for Marks & Spencer. Now, the chef is sharing his extensive experience and expertise with home cooks in his new book 30 Minute Curries. Essential reading for Indian food lovers lacking in time and access to large volumes of spices, the recipes illustrate the chef’s pared-back and democratic cooking style.

Mr Atul Kochhar. Photograph by Mr Cristian Barnett, courtesy of Bloomsbury

“I am on a mission to entice you all to cook a curry in under 30 minutes,” says Mr Kochhar in the introduction to his book. “I have thrown all the chef processes out the window.” What this means is that the recipes require only simple ingredients, with no weird utensils or deep-frying found in the methods. What’s more, Mr Kochhar’s cooking has a health focus: sunflower oil is replaced by rapeseed oil; low-fat yoghurt is often used in place of cream or cheese; and many recipes include tamarind, which is “universally seen as a superfood,” he says. You can pick up the book here. Or, if you want to get cooking right away, he has kindly supplied the recipe to his mango pickle-flavoured aubergine, below.