On the spice route...

Cari, curry, kari, …

is a mixture of spices from India used to prepare meat, poultry, fish and seafood dishes or vegetarian dishes. The first traces of certain cultivated spices (mustard seeds for example) date back to 3000 BC and suggest that the Indians of the time had already begun the development of modern Indian gastronomy. The base of the curries is always closely linked to the history of the region from which they come.

Turmeric, mustard seeds, paprika, coriander seeds are usually a base, to which we add clove, star anise, cumin, pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg etc. Curries in Southeast Asia tend to have a base of fresh produce such as peppers, fresh coriander, galangal, ginger, garlic, lemongrass, grated coconut, fish or dried shrimp.The Indian curries are moistened mainly with water, yogurt or tomato. In Sri Lanka and southern India, coconut water or coconut milk is added.


The importance of Colombo harbor

1st era.

The curry started migrating eastward at the beginning of the first millennium with the Chinese and Buddhists. First to Bangladesh, Myanmar, then Thailand, Vietnam and Laos. There are even traces of traditional curry in Yunnan, with a chicken curry with very sweet flavors.

Then curry spread to Japan mainly with the return of traders and the comings and goings of Buddhist pilgrims.

Genghis Kan, the founder of the Mongolian Empire, greatly influenced the gastronomy of northern China and Mongolia, his country of origin. Under his era, there are curry preparations, but also byrianis and breads of Indian origin.

Malaysian cuisine has also been influenced by Indians since the first millennium, but its diversity has increased under the English Empire.

Under The Empire, East India Company

From the 17th century, everything is accelerating. The English export everything from India and work towards the globalization of curry. First to East Africa, then South Africa and then West India and the Caribbean. All these countries have an enormous influence on Indian spices and curries, which are now the popular dishes of the respective nations.

The Sultanate of Oman

The trade automatically created a brew of spices between the Sultanate and India. The tastes of the preparations here are a mixture of Pakistani curries and traditional dishes from the Oman region. As native populations are more fond of sweet tastes, the curries from this region are more subtle and incorporate dried fruits and nuts.

Les laboratoires culinaires' class "What did you put in your curry?" (October 24) will trace the multiple influences that this preparation has experienced through the ages by following the route of spices. From North India to South India, through Southeast Asia and Africa, to the confines of Muslim cultures. Our chef will teach you many curry bases and a tasting of some typical dishes that will bring a little exoticism to your eating habits.

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