Friday, 27 January 2017

Leftover symphonies 4: Goose Goan Vindaloo (which also works with chicken)

A bucket of vindaloo
Somehow it seem appropriate to include this shouty football song

Misappropriation was one of the buzzwords of 2016. It usually referred to things like white people wearing dreadlocks, white people wearing a bindi or white people doing yoga, apparently. I agree to a certain degree. Why do you need to wear a bindi? It's a mark of religious significance in the Hindu faith. You wear one as a fashion statement, you're a twat. Yoga is a great way to improve flexibility and can lead to a generally improved sense of well-being, but if you subscribe to the pseudo-mystical bullshit that accompanies it, you're a twat and you can stick your chakra up your kundalini . If you have ginger hair and wear dreadlocks, not only do you look like a twat, you probably act like a twat (go on, off you fuck. Those gaudily coloured fucking balls won't juggle themselves, you fucking waster) and almost certainly smell like an unhygienic twat.

The question, though, is when does the sharing and enjoying of other cultures become misappropriation? I've mentioned the fusion and adaption (or bastardisation if you prefer) of certain cuisines in previous posts (notably this one) and if it tastes good, do it. I mean it's not like you're taking something of deep cultural significance and shitting on it. You're not dropping off the kids at the pool in a font for example, it's only food. Besides, a lot of the time you can't make a truly authentic meal according to the recipe because the ingredients have never been seen within 100 miles of your town. You know, like that Yottam Ottolenghi recipe for veal that he insists only tastes authentic if you use the pickled foreskins of virgin aardvarks in the sauce. Thing is, whilst using lime juice instead of tamarind paste might not give the same authentic flavour you get from a street vendor in Kuala Lumpur, it will still taste great so do it!, Fuck authenticity, it's dinner. Even more importantly, where would the cuisines of the old world be without integrating the things grought over from the newly discovered Americas - things like chilli, tomato, potato - 500 years ago?

This dish is more of a double-reverse cultural assimilation/misappropriation though. In the UK, vindaloo curries are generally renowned as the hottest of the dishes in your regular curry house (apart from the notoriously legendary phaal). There is a potato element (the "aloo") in a lot of versions. In my experience, however, they tend to have sacrificed all the delicate flavour you expect in a curry to produce something that is merely "hot", mainly so that pissed dickheads can show their mates how tough they are at 4am after a skinful. A UK curry house vindaloo is not usually a great option for a curry. But, is this a culturally accurate version of vindaloo? Is it bollocks! It shares its name with the original vindaloo, but little else. This is the second occasion of cultural (mis)appropriation for the vindaloo.

Your typical UK restaurant vindaloo
 (apparently, anyway. These curries all look the same)
Image taken from http://www.foodsofengland.co.uk/vindaloo.htm

The dish in this entry is a more authentic version of vindaloo, a curry originating from Goa during the time it was under Portuguese control. Its name does not come from the Hindi or Urdu word for potato, "aloo", but from the Portuguese for wine and garlic, carne de vinha d'alhos (literally "meat in garlic and wine") as this was a way of helping preserve meat, mainly pork, for long trips at sea. This Portuguese dish evolved further in the colony to use locally produced vinegar and spices to make this dish and the name became "vindaloo". So here's the first cultural appropriation of vindaloo and it's an example of a western idea being assimilated into eastern cuisine.

Anyway, onto the recipe in hand. Christmas has been and gone. In the sweary household we alternate year-on-year between turkey and goose for Christmas dinner. This year it was goose, but what the fuck to do with the leftovers? It had to be yet another curry.The problem with reheating roast meat still exists, but this is overcome by using vinegar to cut through the vaguely wet doggy smell and the inherent fattiness of the meat.

As I noted in the title, this also works for other birds, so is a great way to use leftover roast chicken

TIMING
Preparation: 30 minutes
Cooking: 1 hour 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS
2 tbsp vegetable oil (eg rapeseed)
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, finely chopped
6 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp ground tumeric
½ tsp fennel seeds
1 bay leaf
2 cloves
3 green cardamom
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 tsp chilli flakes
½ tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp salt
4 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
4-500g cold roast goose (or chicken!) meat, no skin, chopped into 2cm chunks
200 ml white wine vinegar
400 ml water
1 tbsp tomato puree
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp garam masala

 More spices than you can shake a stick at!
(From top left, 11 o'clock: fennel seeds, cloves, paprika, cardmom, onion seeds, tumeric, fenugreek seeds, mustard seeds, cumin, chilli flakes, coriander, salt, pepper and a bay leaf in the middle)

RECIPE
Heat the oil in a heavy pan, add the onion and fry gently for a good 10 minutes.

Add the garlic and ginger and fry for another 5 minutes

Throw in the spices (except the garam masala) and fry gently for another 5 minutes to allow the flavour to develop.

Add the green pepper and tomatoes, mix and allow to stew for 10 minutes to soften the peppers.

Throw in the goose meat, gently stir then pour in the tomato puree, vinegar and water.

Stir well and leave to stew for 30 minutes, stirring in the garam masala at around the 25 minute mark.

A panful of joy

Fill yer boots!
I don't actually know why you'd want to fill your boots with anything other than your feet, so it's a ridiculous phrase

Serve with rice or an Indian-style bread like naan.

NOTES
Only pretentious foodie wankers like me end up with leftover roast goose. This is why I need to stress that this dish works just as well with chicken but you could also use roast duck if you have any, as unlikely as that may be. I think I have also tried something similar to this with leftover roast pork so that would also work

I have tried a phaal curry on a couple of occasions. Once was an attempt at a prank, the other time was as a bet. The prank failed as I ate the curry without any problem and I also won the bet because I ate the curry without any problem. I did find, however, that on at least one of theses times I did need to spend most of the next day within close reach of a flushing toilet.

The use of vinegar means it's kind of a pickled curry. This is not the same as pickling your knees, and you're using vinegar rather than cheese. What the fuck am I on about? I refer you to the wonderful song below from the late Ivor Cutler on the subject:


This has some similarities to the recipe I posted for Hyderbadi chicken, which also uses vinegar.

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