Cheap curry (with a cheat)

OK, OK, OK. I know I’m always going on about making my own sauces, but for 25p?
I’m on a budget remember, and need to make the pennies stretch.

Hubby and I are in week two of our weight reduction ‘episode’, so as weigh in day isn’t until Saturday, I could cheat when making curry for our main meal today.

Ingredients:   serves 4

2 chicken breasts                        £3
1 large onion                                  10p
1 small carrot                                  6p
other half of green pepper          30p
handful sultanas                              5p
1 glove garlic                                pence
Value jar curry sauce                    25p (I kid you not, just 25p for four servings)

I cut the chicken into cubes and together with the sultanas heated them with half an inch of water in the saucepan.
Note: I prefer to cook my meat first, and the sultanas would absorb some of the liquid to become plump and juicy.
When cooked, I added the other sliced ingredients and cooked until soft.
I then drained off the excess liquid before adding my jar of sauce.
Bring to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for ten minutes (just the right amount of time to cook the rice).

I served it with boiled rice (everyone has their own preference for quantity and type).

curry 1 6 curry 2

When food shopping , I always read the labels.
It may say it is low fat or low calorie, but that could mean it’s higher in salt and sugar (used as preservatives), so be careful.

Here in the UK we have RDA guidelines on everything edible, basically something like this:
daily allowance

This is the back of the label on the jar I bought today.
food label rda

These figures are per portion (1/4 of a jar = 110g) not the whole thing, so you can see it is high in salt (0.9g, some 15% of the adult daily allowance) and also sugars as they account for almost 50% of the carbohydrates. The fats are also quite high being 1.3g plus another gram for saturates.
However, if you look at it quickly, you think you’re doing OK and this is good for you because it’s low in calories (57 kcal).
BUT, if you think about the volume you are about to eat, it is a sauce after all, you’re using up quite a bit of your daily allowances on very little substance.

Now for the actual ingredients:
tomato puree 9%
modified maize starch
curry powder **
sultanas 1%
creamed coconut
onion powder
garlic powder
acidity regulator lactic acid
dessicated coconut

** curry powder contains tumeric, corriander, rice flour, fenugreek, cumin seed, mustard seed, ginger, salt, black pepper, paprika, nutmeg, chili, fennel seed.

You can see why it was only 25p, but it was OK in a watery kind of way!
Ingredients are supposed to be listed in order of highest percentage. I found it amusing that the only percentages given were for the tomato puree and the sultanas.
I did not find a single sultana in the sauce, though I may have seen a portion of one as it was going into the pot, neither could I taste the coconut and the garlic was probably my own!
But for the money, it was passable.

Now, if I’d made it myself, I would have used a chicken stock cube, a little cornflour for thickening, a teaspoon of curry powder (spice jar from supermarket) and half a teaspoon of tumeric (also from supermarket).
As I didn’t have cornflour, curry powder or tumeric in my cupboard, you can see why I cheated.
This will now be rectified next shopping day.


About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! In November 2020, we lost our beloved Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney. We now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of Kizzy, my GSD when Hubby and I first met so had hers done too. On February 24th 2022 we were blessed to find Maya, a 13 week old GSD pup who has made her own place in our hearts. You can follow our training methods, photos and her growth in my blog posts. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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3 Responses to Cheap curry (with a cheat)

  1. swo8 says:

    You can make your own curry sauce with plain yogurt, tomatoes, onions, garlic and spices. Check out my video Garma Karhi on my site. It’s even cheaper than those premade commercial sauces.

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