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  • Writer's pictureHonest Cooks


Lost Recipes of India, Episode 1

Vindaloo, an Indo-Portuguese dish from the 16th century may not be a lost recipe, per se, but it definitely is a misrepresented recipe. Contrary to popular belief, there are no potatoes in this dish. The confusion may have risen from the phonetic similarity between Vindaloo and "aloo" which is the Hindi word for potatoes.

In actuality, however, the name "Vindaloo" is derived from the Portuguese term: Carne de vinho e alhos. Translated, it means "meat cooked in wine and garlic". 'Vin' plus 'alhos' became Vindaloo. In this video, we unravel some origin facts about this gorgeous bright red curry and talk about the correct ingredients and procedures to cook this dish. And, with that we bring you the premier episode of "Lost Recipes of India", a new series by Honest Cooks.


For Marination:

  1. Chicken thighs cut into smaller pcs - 1 lb OR Pork Shoulder or butt if you are going for pork.

  2. Dried red chilies, to dry roast - 6 pcs OR 5 gm

  3. Cumin, to dry roast - 3/4 tbsp OR 6gm

  4. Cloves, to dry roast - 1 tsp OR 9-10 pcs

  5. Black peppercorn, to dry roast - 1 tsp OR 3gm

  6. Black Mustard, to dry roast - 3 gm OR 3/4 tsp

  7. Garlic, fresh & peeled - 20 gm OR 1.5 tbsp

  8. Ginger, fresh & peeled - 20 gm OR 1.5 tbsp

  9. Wine Vinegar - 80 gm OR ~ 3 oz

For the curry:

  1. Oil - 3 tbsp

  2. Cinnamon stick - 1 stick

  3. Black Mustard - 2 gm OR 1/4 tsp

  4. Red Onion, finely chopped - 3/4 cup OR 6 oz

  5. Fresh green chilies, slit in the center - 3 -4 pcs

  6. Turmeric - 1.5 tsp

  7. Red chili powder() - 2.5 tsp

  8. Salt - 1.5 tsp

  9. Brown sugar OR jaggery - 2 tbsp

  10. Stock - 1/2 cup OR 4 oz [You will need more if you're using a tougher cut of meat like Pork butt ~ 1.5 cups]


  1. Dry roast the whole spices mentioned under “For Marinating”.

  2. When the spices have cooled off a bit, make a paste with ginger, garlic, and wine vinegar.

  3. Marinade the chicken in this paste and store in the fridge for up to 4 hours. If you’re using Pork, lamb, or a tougher cut of meat you can marinade it overnight in the fridge as well.

  4. When the marinating process has about 30 mins left, heat a pan and when the pan is hot, add oil.

  5. Once the oil is hot, add cinnamon stick, mustard seeds, slit green chilies and cook until the mustard crackles. Then, add onions.

  6. Cook onions on medium-low flame to caramelize them,

  7. When the onions are ready, add turmeric, red chili powder and salt and cook for a few mins.

  8. Add the chicken. Cook until half done. Don’t cover the pan to avoid sweating of the meat.

  9. When the chicken is about half done, add brown sugar and mix well.

  10. Add the stock and let the chicken cook fully – pan remains uncovered. But if you are using pork or lamb, you may need to cover the pan and use more than half cup of stock.

  11. The chicken is ready when it is nice and tender. Serve with plain white rice since this is a very flavorful dish!

Bonus tip: you can make this the day before; the flavors develop overnight, and the meat becomes much more tender and flavorful. :)

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