Butter Sauce

This year marks my tenth year teaching high school, and it has been a little different than most years for obvious reasons. I’m still doing in-school lessons, but now I’m also teaching some students completely online, which requires some adjustments. Prior to this new teaching model, I have always wanted to create more videos of our class recipes so that students can continue to refer to them, and create them at home with their families. I have finally started to make some progress on this. Every now and then I say to myself, why didn’t I do this sooner?? Perhaps I’m lazy, maybe because there always seems to be something else to do…But now, with the pandemic (and currently, lock-down), I figure I have no more excuses. I’m going to try to post more recipes, more frequently. At least for now, until we can go out and do things.

But on to this recipe. You may be thinking: What is he doing? Why is he posting Indian recipes? What does he know about Indian food? To tell you the truth, I don’t know much about it except for the few things that Megan and I tried from Asma Khan’s cookbook. If you don’t have it, I highly recommend it. Oh! And also watch her on Netflix’s Chef’s Table, it made me cry. We don’t know much about Indian food, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t learn about it! This recipe is an amalgamation of two butter sauce recipes that were graciously shared with me in the past: 1) a family recipe from a past student Nashita and 2) a recipe from Exotic Indian Cuisine (If you are craving some good Indian food, find them on Instagram at @exoticindiancuisine)

1 bay leaf
3 whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1/4 cup ghee (or neutral oil/ butter)
2 tsp cumin seeds

Fun fact: I found out that one of my co-workers made this (and a few of our other recipes) with her kids. Love the way that food can bring families together. Makes my heart melt.

2 small onion (small dice)
1 tbsp garlic (minced)
1 tbsp ginger (minced)
1/2 tsp cayenne (optional)
1 + 1/2 tsp chili flakes (optional)

2 cups of canned tomatoes (*** we found that crushed tomatoes works best)
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp white vinegar
1 tbsp cumin, ground
1 + 1/2 tsp tumeric

2 cups heavy cream
1 + 1 /2 tsp salt
1 + 1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1 tbsp fenugreek
1 tbsp garam masala

1. Heat saucepot over medium heat, add ghee (or neutral oil/ butter).
2. Add cumin seeds, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, and bay leaf.
3. Once cumin seeds have slightly browned, add ginger, garlic, and onions (you may also add chili flakes and cayenne at this point).
4. Turn down heat slightly, and cook for 3-5 minutes until onions are fragrant and translucent (Note: try to pick out the cloves now otherwise, it will be a bit of a challenge later on).
5. Add tomatoes, water, sugar, turmeric and ground cumin.
6. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn it down and let it simmer for 20 minutes.
7. Add cream and bring to a boil.
8. Add fenugreek, coriander, garam marsala, salt and pepper. Turn it down and let it simmer for another 15 minutes.
9. Season to taste and adjust the consistency by either reducing the sauce more or adding more water.

If you are adding proteins, you can:
– add chickpeas during the softening of the onion stage
– add raw chicken during the softening of the onion stage
– add soy curls soaked in water (towards the end of the process)
– add cooked chicken (towards the end of the process)

2 thoughts on “Butter Sauce

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