What was Japanese curry like in the 1870s? Let's find out!
The minute I saw this curry, I knew I had to make it. I've never done a recipe from any earlier than the 1950s, so I was looking forward to the experience of making something from a looong time ago (I mean, relatively). Apparently, the earliest Japanese curry recipe was published in a 1872 cookbook about Western cuisine, in which there were two curry recipes: one for beef and one for chicken. At first glance, it actually doesn't seem much different from modern curry recipes, but I've never actually made a Japanese curry from scratch, as the curry roux blocks arer pretty ubiquitous.
The recipe translation I used was done by Sora News 24. I had a friend fluent in Japanese and competent with translating older writing take a look at it to confirm the translation. He gave the A-OK on Sora News' version, so I decided to adapt my curry based on that recipe. Of course, the curry depicted in Golden Kamuy is different from the recipe, so I made a few additions to the recipe. Asirpa dines on venison curry; I only had beef. Asirpa's curry has carrots and potatos in it; I added those to the 1872 recipe.
The curry in itself, much like modern Japanese curry, is shockingly easy to put together. You sauté some onion, get your veg in there, and brown the meat. The difference is that you make a roux in the pan using the curry spices and flour, before adding water and leting it all simmer together. I was also cooking for someone who can't have gluten, meaning I made the roux base of this dish gluten free.
Overall, the process was quite simple, much less complex than I thought it would be. And taste-wise? Really good!
I was surprised at how similar it tasted to Japanese curry you get nowadays; it was just a bit richer, due to the butter. Would I make it again? Absolutely! The recipe is good, almost 200 years later. And I mean, why would it change? You don't fix something that isn't broken.
Click to watch the video below to see the full process!
Ingredients for the Curry
(Feeds two, adapted from the originally translated recipe here.)
-6 tbsp butter or ghee
-5 spring onions, white and light green parts chopped, dark green parts discarded
-1/2 russet potato, cubed
-1 carrot, peeled and cut into bite size pieces
-1 tbsp Japanese curry powder
-1 tbsp potato starch or flour
-7 oz stew meat, cubed into bite size pieces
-1 cup water
To Make the Curry
1. Melt butter in a pan over medium high heat. Saute onion about 3 minutes, or until translucent.
2. Add in the potato and carrot. Saute about 5 minutes, or until potato becomes translucent around the edges.
3. Add in beef, and season all with salt. Cook about 3-4 minutes, or until beef is browned.
4. Add in the curry powder and flour/potato starch. Mix into the butter until a sauce forms. Allow to cook about 5 minutes.
5. Add water, and cover with a lid. Turn heat to low, and cook about 15 minutes, or until vegetables are totally soft.
6. Serve with fresh cooked rice!
I hope you enjoyed this post! Check in next week for another recipe. To check out more anime food recipes, visit my blog. If you have any questions or comments, leave them below! I recently got a Twitter, so you can follow me at @yumpenguinsnack if you would like, and DEFINITELY feel free to send me food requests! My Tumblr is yumpenguinsnacks.tumblr.com. Find me on Youtube for more video tutorials! Enjoy the food, and if you decide to recreate this dish, show me pics! :D
In case you missed it, check out our last dish: Hot Tub Tamago from Kakuriyo-Bed and Breakfast for Spirits-. What other famous anime dishes would you like to see Emily make on COOKING WITH ANIME?