Balti Sauce - Basic Sauce for Anything Goes Curry

Recipe by magpie diner
YIELD: 3 cups




  • Measure out the 8 spices into a bowl (first 8 ingredients). If using fresh chilis then leave those out for now. Warm up a large skillet or pot (ideally cast iron) and bring to med-high heat. Gently roast the spices in the dry skillet -- watching the mixture doesn't burn, keep stirring. After about a minute it will become fragrant and begin to get dark - take it off the heat and pour back into the bowl - set aside.
  • Put the skillet back on the heat, add in the oil and bring back to medium high heat. Add in the chopped onion and cook thru until translucent. Once the onion is cooked, add in the ginger and garlic and mix well - watching the garlic doesn't burn. Next add the spice mixture back in, followed by the tinned tomatoes.
  • Mix in about 1 cup of water - you want a thick sauce, but not too paste-like. Add in the salt, bay leaves and cardamom seeds.
  • Grate the zest off of the lemon, add to the pot, along with the juice from 1/2 of the lemon. Save the other half for later, you may want to add more. Let it all simmer on medium-low.
  • For a nice smooth sauce, remove the bay leaves and blend until smooth (an immersion blender works well).