How to make Madras curry powder recipe

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Invented for the British during the 19th century, and originating from the city of Madras (now Chennai), the capital of the Tamil Nadu region of southern India, Madras Powdered Curry is a subtle blend of aromatic spices, with a soft chili kick.

Definitely not to be confused with the fiery madras curries so loved by revelers after a pub in Britain … especially since Madras curries don't exist in authentic Indian cuisine!

While Indian dishes have a finely balanced mix of spices and herbs, chosen not only for their flavor but also for their healing and Ayurvedic properties, British madras curries are as subtle as a mallet on the head!

Of course, if you want to be chauvinistic about it, you can always use a few more Kashmiri chilies, but don't be tempted to use Thai or any other hot chili because you will lose your balance of masala which will make it quite useless.

In fact, you know what? Just no! Just enjoy this madras curry powder for what it is: a beautiful blend of flavors that sit in harmony with each other, with neither dominating the other.

That does not sound good?

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How to Make Madras Curry Powder

Madras curry powder should not be confused with the fiery male madras curry found in the UK. This is a subtle blend of fragrant spices with a light chili kick.

Course: tips and procedures

Cuisine: Indian

Preparation time: 2 minutes.

Cook time: 5 minutes.

Total time: 7 minutes


  • Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and grill the coriander, cumin, fenugreek, mustard, cinnamon, cardamom, chilies and peppercorns dry for about five minutes, until the spices release their perfume. Make sure to keep them moving around the pan or they will burn. Don't inhale too much!

  • Transfer to a mix or spice / coffee grinder, along with the dried curry leaves and blend until you have a fine powder.

  • Add the turmeric and give the masala another blitz to mix everything.

  • Remove from grinder and store for about a month in an airtight container, out of direct sunlight.

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