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53 votes

How do I add a strong "onion flavor" to the biryani (in restaurant style)?

The restaurants may be adding asafoetida, a ground root product that adds a savory, onion-y flavor to food. It's very concentrated stuff and smells awful, but once you cook it for awhile it's absolute ...
GdD's user avatar
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32 votes
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What is this seed pod?

Looks like cardamom to me, regularly used in Indian and other South Asian cuisine and often left as whole seed pods in dishes for unsuspecting diners to accidentally chew on.
Blargant's user avatar
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31 votes

How do I add a strong "onion flavor" to the biryani (in restaurant style)?

I make biryani frequently. The recipe I follow differs from your link in a couple of areas. Specifically, in terms of your concern about onion flavor, my recipe uses much more oil, and twice as much ...
moscafj's user avatar
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29 votes

Why does my curry taste flat

Ideas Old spices? If you are not making curry often maybe your spices are aged. They lose their pop. Your mix looks good. Try again with new. Buy whole spices when you can - they keep better. ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 6,616
29 votes

Why does my curry taste flat

The answer is definitely a lack of salt. Particularly if you're new to cooking or new to cooking dishes like curries and stews, you might not be accustomed to the amount of salt you need to add to ...
Banjoe's user avatar
  • 391
28 votes

Why does my Indian food taste bland?

You just don't make a curry by throwing all the ingredients in a pan & heating them for a while. Even using good ingredients & putting enough salt in, that recipe will come out bland. I'd also ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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27 votes
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Dried basil leaves instead of bay leaves

No, this would be a bad substitution. Instead use cinnamon, in a smaller quantity, and preferably whole. Or leave it out entirely and rely on the other spices in your dish. In my opinion at least, ...
Benjamin Kuykendall's user avatar
27 votes
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Why does my Indian food taste bland?

The recipe provided doesn't provide enough salt. Taking just the pound of chicken breast (454 g) and 1/4 tsp salt (~1.5 g) you have a salt content of approx. 0.3%; but, factor in: 1/2 onion (85 g, ...
borkymcfood's user avatar
  • 5,361
23 votes
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Why does my curry taste flat

In addition to Willk's answer, which may have discovered the age of some of your spice rack contents - cumin & other short-life ground spices can sometimes be flat even when new, from supermarkets....
Tetsujin's user avatar
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22 votes
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How to deal with strong, sizable spices?

Simple: spit them out. You're not supposed to eat whole cardamom pods or cloves, any more than you'd eat whole cinnamon sticks, bay leaves, or slices of dried galangal. Each diner is expected to spit ...
FuzzyChef's user avatar
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17 votes

How to deal with strong, sizable spices?

For whole spices which are hard to pick out, you could try make a bouquet garni. Wrap the whole spices into a bundle, using cheesecloth, a piece of muslin (undyed, loosely woven fabric), a coffee ...
csk's user avatar
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17 votes
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What does layering biryani actually do?

From what I understand, biryani is never stirred except at the end when it is served. Part of the reasons for not stirring is that traditionally during the second stage of cooking, the partially ...
Greybeard's user avatar
  • 6,130
16 votes

What was the original "Lea & Perrins" recipe from Bengal?

The trouble with the Lea & Perrin's story & Lord Sandys' "original recipe" is that it is mainly myth/fable/advertising copy (I'd hate to outright call it a lie…) Worcestershire Sauce ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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15 votes
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Are cardamom husks edible?

The entire seed pod is edible. With a coffee grinder, you may not be able to reduce the husks to powder (that’s more of a job for a burr grinder), which may affect the mouth feel of the final dish ...
Sneftel's user avatar
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15 votes
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What to do with insoluble tamarind parts found in a paste pouch, to prevent them appearing in dishes

Remove the amount of tamarind you want to use from package. Place in a bowl. Add some water or other liquid...often hot to better dissolve the tamarind. Let soak a bit. Stir and mash with spoon or ...
moscafj's user avatar
  • 76.1k
14 votes

Are cardamom husks edible?

If the goal is to follow a South Indian recipe, then dehusking the cardamom and grinding just the seeds would be more authentic than grinding the pod whole. I spent much of my life in India. I studied ...
verbose's user avatar
  • 1,527
13 votes

Why does my Indian food taste bland?

I think the "Healthy" recipe title says it all here - although with the butter and cream components I think the author was stretching that point somewhat! Seriously though, many healthy ...
Greybeard's user avatar
  • 6,130
11 votes

What was Indian food like before the arrival of the chili pepper from the Americas?

The recipe 'thevasam' in the link is authentic ( but regional ) pre-columbian exchange cuisine, made with ingredients from species largely native to the indo-malayan ecoregion, and is pretty much ...
Ramesh Emss's user avatar
11 votes

Difference between tzatziki and Indian mint dip (mint chutney?)

As far as I'm aware, the traditional Greek tzatziki doesn't generally include mint at all. It's a cucumber dip that is made of yogurt and sometimes includes dill or mint as a flavoring: Tzatziki (...
Catija's user avatar
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11 votes

How do I add a strong "onion flavor" to the biryani (in restaurant style)?

I'm not sure if this gets at exactly what I'd call an "onion" flavour, but otherwise your experience sounds very similar to mine. I was pretty good at many different Indian recipes, but for the ...
mrputter's user avatar
  • 111
11 votes

Why does garam masala powder taste bland?

I think we’re up against this mis-interpretation of the word ‘sweet’ again. Garam masala is a blend of aromatics you add towards the end of cooking. Many of the ingredients are the same as a generic ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 29.8k
10 votes
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What to do to get tender, edible steak instead of it being rubbery?

Starting with a "random piece of meat" may be part of the problem. Some cuts are more suitable for this than others. If the meat seems "raw", then something is very wrong here. An hour at pressure-...
Joshua Engel's user avatar
  • 4,446
9 votes

Indian Cuisine - Atta Chicken

Apparently a lot has changed since this question was first posted exactly five years ago today. Today a simple Google search yields many recipes, a lot of lore, and lots of pictures. Here's one ...
Jolenealaska's user avatar
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9 votes

What is meant by "cook until the oil separates" in Indian curry recipes?

Oil and water have different boiling points. Oil has a higher boiling point as compared to water.Spices and aromatic release their flavors only in oil because the compounds in them that are ...
Shalaka Kamat's user avatar
9 votes

Why is the English word "curry" used for all these different dishes?

"Curry" is based on the Tamil word "Kari", which refers to any of various highly-spiced side dishes intended to be eaten over rice. Englishmen from the British East India Company encountered the Tamil ...
FuzzyChef's user avatar
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9 votes

How to deal with strong, sizable spices?

You could get a spice grinder and grind them. If you do it at the time of cooking (rather than buying preground spices) you're unlikely to get a significant decrease in quality of flavour Do be aware ...
Tristan's user avatar
  • 585
9 votes
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Grinding toasted spices without cooling

The reason to wait is that warm spices tend to clump when grinding, and the cooling step should help avoid this. I have a bladed coffee grinder that I use as a spice grinder. I rarely wait for ...
moscafj's user avatar
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8 votes
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Why is there no pork on the Indian take-away menu?

In the UK you see lamb and chicken on "Indian" restaurant menus, but not beef or pork. I suspect that in the colonial era when the English wanted meat there were goats (near enough the same as sheep) ...
Chris H's user avatar
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8 votes

How to predict and adjust the spice level of dal?

Firstly, it has to be said - the way you learn to judge quantities is … practise. However, there are several factors at play here… "Indians" [sorry, I'm generalising a whole continent into ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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8 votes
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How do I make beef go soft for Indian beef curry?

Tough cuts of beef that are typically used in stews have lots of collagen, which is what makes them so tough. Collagen turns into gelatin when exposed to heat (and moisture) for a sufficiently long ...
Ruben van Bergen's user avatar

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