I have loved baking since a child, but more general cooking has only become a passion in the last couple of years. My go to dinner used to be poached eggs on crumpets (which is still an epic evening food choice!) Now I try to be a little more adventurous.
One thing I had not yet cracked as part of my culinary repertoire was curries. The opportunity to try out The Little Kitchen’s Curry Club was therefore really exciting! The Little Kitchen in Brislington offer a huge range of affordable cookery classes for adults and courses, from shorter evening courses to longer full-day workshops.
With a bottle of Prosecco in hand (most evening courses are BYOB so definitely arrive with a bottle!) mother goose and I arrived to a fully prepped table ready to learn how to make a healthier and tastier version of one of my fav takeaways. On the menu: Vegetable Pakoras, Beef Madras and Tarka Dal.
The dishes were all about the prep, but it is actually much simpler than I had anticipated. During the introduction to the spices, we discovered many of them were already in our home spice cupboard, and all were easily accessible from any supermarket. First up, getting the Dal going. Using red split lentils (rinsed until no longer cloudy), we brang to the boil and left to simmer with a little turmeric while we cracked on with the madras.
We had prepped the meat first, marinating in yoghurt and spices and left in the fridge to flavour and tenderise. All eyes were teary as we chopped up the onions – all wishing we had onion goggles. We cooked the onions in a little oil and the whole spices until caramelised, stirring regularly to avoid burning. Marinated beef was added to the pan with tomato purée and beef stock. This is a slow cooked curry, so all our goods were packaged up to go into the oven…
All the delicious smells were certainly making us hungry! Luckily it was time for vegetable pakoras. Super quick and easy to make and can use up any veg from the fridge – I think these will be a regular side dish at home. A batter was made from gram flour, cumin, garlic, ginger, chilli and warm water. It felt like I was on a cookery show, with everything prepped in mini dishes and bowls. We chopped up the veg nice and small. We were using pepper, carrot (using a peeler to make thin strips) and spinach, but you could use a variety of options, such as courgette or sweet potato. Stir it through the batter, while you heat your oil up! Scooping out bits with a big spoon, we transferred the mix slowly into the hot oil, turning after a couple of minutes. Voila – tasty and fresh snack at the ready to dip into mango chutney and mint yoghurt dips. We devoured them in seconds.
Just the Dal to finish before we could all sit down to eat together. Cooking onions until golden, we added spices before stirring it through the previously cooked lentils. Top tip was to make up a big batch of garlic and ginger purée for quick use in stir fries and dals. Cooking was complete and time to sit down with the last of the Prosecco and enjoy our creations with our fellow cooks. 🙂
Great atmosphere, clear and easy to follow instructions and really hands on and practical class to give me the confidence that I could easily recreate the dishes at home. A handy recipe sheet was also provided in case our memory was affected by the booze. 🙂 Mum and I have already started to look at what else we could learn!
To find your perfect cookery course, check out – http://www.little-kitchen.co.uk/. They also provide gift vouchers and private classes.
Also follow them on social media, to make sure you keep up with any new classes!