Bridget White Anglo-Indian Recipe Books

Bridget White Anglo-Indian Recipe Books
ANGLO-INDIAN RECIPE BOOKS

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All the recipes and Photographs on this Site are old Family Recipes and tried and tested by the Author. Please feel free to try out these old recipes, and relish them, but desist from copying and using on other sites without the prior permission of Bridget White-Kumar. Any infringement would amount to Plagiarism and infringement of Copy Right punishable by Law

Friday, March 24, 2017

FISH PADDA OR FISH PICKLE



FISH PADDA

Fish Padda or Fish Pickle is an old Anglo-Indian favourite that was made in most homes in the olden days. The summer months are a good time to make this delightful, tangy, pungent fish pickle. It could be stored in the fridge for a long time as the vinegar helps to preserve it. It tastes awesome with just steamed rice and Pepper water or Dol Curry (Dhal) or eat it with chapattis or bread.
Ingredients
500 grams sardines or small mackerels or any other small fish cut into fairly big pieces
3 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 tablespoons chopped ginger
3 tablespoons chillie powder
1 teaspoon garlic paste
1 tablespoon cumin powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon mustard powder
2 teacups vinegar
20 or 25 curry leaves
½ liter oil Sesame oil or mustard oil
Salt to taste

Marinate the fish with turmeric powder & salt for half an hour. Fry the fish lightly in either sesame oil or mustard oil, for 5-8 minutes. It should only be slightly crisp. Remove & keep aside.
In the same oil add the curry leaves, chopped ginger and garlic and fry for a few minutes. Mix in the garlic paste, chillie powder, cumin powder, mustard powder and salt and fry with a little vinegar till the oil separates from the mixtures and gives out a nice aroma. Add the rest of the vinegar and the fried fish and mix well . Simmer for 2 more minutes then take down.
Cool and store in bottles. This pickle will last for about 6 months.

Note; Instead of fresh fish, Salt fish can be used instead. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

FISH FINGERS OR FISH STICKS



FISH FINGERS
Who doesn’t like Crispy Fish Fingers as an afternoon Treat? Fish Fingers are also known as Fish Sticks. Fish Fingers are very popular party or tea time snacks that are very easy to prepare. Fillets of boneless fish are lightly spiced then either dipped in batter or bread crumbs and deep fried. However, they could be shallow fried or baked if desired.

Serves 6    Time required: 45 minutes
Ingredients
                                  
½ kg boneless fish cut into strips or fillets
2 eggs beaten well
3 tablespoons refined flour or maida     
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon ground black pepper / pepper powder 
1 teaspoon chillie powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder   
3 Tablespoons Bread crumbs                
 Oil for deep frying

Wash the fish and pat dry with absorbent paper.
Mix the flour together with all the above ingredients (except the oil) with a little water to make a slightly thick batter. Coat each piece of fish well with the batter.
Heat oil in a pan till smoky. Roll each fish finger in the bread crumbs and fry till brown on both sides.
Drain and serve hot with tomato sauce or Tartar Sauce

Ps. Omit the bread crumbs if desired. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

DAK BUNGALOW EGG CURRY



DAK BUNGALOW EGG CURRY
(This spicy and tasty Egg Curry was prepared in the Dak Bungalows or Inspection Bungalows during the time of the Raj)

Serves 4      Preparation and Cooking Time 45 minutes
Ingredients
 4 or 6 Hard Boiled Eggs, shelled
1 teaspoon spice powder or garam masala powder
1 teaspoon chopped garlic                       
1 teaspoon chillie powder
3 onions sliced                                          
Salt to taste
3 green chillies                                         
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
½ teaspoon pepper powder                      
2 tablespoons oil
2 tomatoes chopped finely or pureed
½ cup curds /yogurt


Heat oil in a pan and fry the onions till light brown. Add all the other ingredients (except the boiled eggs) and stir fry for 2 or 3 minutes. Lower the heat, and add the hard boiled eggs. Simmer for about 6 more minutes. Remove from heat. The gravy should be quite thick. Serve with Chapattis / Rotis or white steamed rice.  

Saturday, March 11, 2017

MEAT AND BEETROOT CURRY


Ingredients
½ kg meat (beef or mutton)                                           
2 or 3 medium size beetroots 
2 big onions chopped finely                                          
1 big tomatoes pureed
2 teaspoons chillie powder                                          
1/4  teaspoon turmeric powder
2 teaspoons coriander powder                                     
2-teaspoons ginger garlic paste
½ cup coconut paste or coconut milk (optional)                                                    
3 tablespoons oil
Salt to taste

Peel the beetroots and cut into pieces
Heat oil in a suitable pan or pressure cooker and fry the onions well. Add the ginger garlic paste and sauté lightly. Add the tomato puree, chillie powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder and fry for some time. Add the meat and the chopped beetroot and mix well. Continue frying for some time till the oil separates from the mixture. Add salt, coconut paste and 2 cups of water (or add more for and pressure cook till done. 
Serve with white steamed rice. 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

BENGAL LANCERS PRAWN / SHRIMP CURRY



BENGAL LANCERS PRAWN / SHRIMP CURRY
Lt.  Colonel James Skinner or ‘Sikandar Sahib’ was the founder of the famous irregular cavalry known as Skinner’s Horse or the Yellow Boys, in the 18th century.. ‘Skinner’s Horse turned out to be one of the finest regiments of the British and later the Indian Army. Lt. Col Skinner was decorated with the ‘Knight of the Order of the Bath’ by Her Majesty’s Government. Skinner’s Horse Regiment , was renamed the 1st Bengal Cavalry and then again renamed as the The Bengal Lancers. This Prawn / Shrimp purportedly originated in this Army Regiment Mess and was later incorporated in the menus of the other Regimental Messes during the time of the Raj.
Serves 6   Preparation and cooking Time 45 minutes
Ingredients

1 kg medium size Shrimps / Prawns cleaned and de-veined
3 tomatoes chopped
3 onions sliced finely
2 teaspoons chillie powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder (optional)
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon garlic paste
1 teaspoon ginger paste
3 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons vinegar

Marinate the shrimps / prawns with the chillie powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, vinegar and salt and keep aside for 15 minutes.
Heat oil in a pan and fry the onions till golden brown. Add the garlic paste, ginger paste and tomatoes and fry till the tomatoes turn pulpy. Add the marinated prawns / shrimps and mix well. Add 1 cup of water and cook on medium heat for about 20 minutes till the prawns / shrimps are cooked. Serve with rice, Bread or Chapattis.


Monday, February 27, 2017

APPLE PANCAKES for PANCAKE TUESDAY OR SHROVE TUESDAY














APPLE PANCAKES
Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Tuesday is the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, i.e. the day before the commencement of the season of Lent leading up to Easter Sunday. Lent is a time of fast and abstinence and of making sacrifices and giving things up. The Church liturgy laid much emphasis on eating very plain food and refraining from food that would give pleasure during the period of lent. In many cultures, this meant no meat, dairy, or eggs. 
So in earlier times, Shrove Tuesday became the last chance for people to indulge themselves in good food on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday and to make use of the items of foods that were not allowed during Lent. In the United Kingdom and Ireland, Shrove Tuesday is more commonly known as Pancake Tuesday or Pancake Day, as it is customary to eat PANCAKES on this day. Pancakes thus became associated with the day preceding Lent, because it was a way to use up all the rich foodstuffs in the house such as eggs, milk, and sugar, before the fasting season of the 40 days of Lent began.
APPLE PAN CAKES

Serves 2 
Preparation time 30 minutes
1cup flour all purpose flour (maida)                       
2 eggs beaten well
2 tablespoons sugar                   
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
1 tablespoon butter or ghee       
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder   
1 cup finely chopped apple      
1 cup milk


Mix all the ingredients together to get a thin smooth batter without lumps. Heat a non- stick frying pan. When hot wipe all over with a piece of cloth dipped in a little oil. Pour a ladle of batter in the pan with a swirling motion and then shake the pan so that the entire pan is covered. Cook on both sides and remove. Serve hot with Jam or honey and sliced apples for filling 


For other Fruit Pan cakes, add finely chopped fruit such as banana, pineapple, etc., to the batter and make the pancakes as above.

Sunday, February 26, 2017



MULLIGATAWNY SOUP
Mulligatawny Soup which originated during the days of the Raj as a  ‘Curried Soup” was actually the anglicized version of the Tamil “Melligu -Thani”. (Melligu meaning pepper and Thani meaning water). As the name suggests it was originally a watery soup with the addition of Pepper.  However in course of time a lot of other ingredients such as coconut, meat and other spices were added to give it a completely different flavour. This soup is a tasty meal in itself.

Serves 6        Time required: 1 hour
Ingredients
1 teaspoon chillie powder
2 teaspoons ground black pepper /  / pepper powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
2 big onions sliced
3 tablespoons yellow lentils 
1 cup coconut paste or coconut milk
Salt to taste

Cook all the ingredients with 6 to 8 cups of water in a large vessel on high heat till it reaches boiling point. Lower the heat and simmer for at least one hour till the soup is nice and thick.  Alternately, pressure cook for about 15 minutes on medium heat. Add 2 teaspoons of butter while still hot. Garnish with mint leaves. Serve with bread or rice.


Note: Chicken, Mutton or Lamb could be added if desired. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

MEAT GLACE OR MEAT GLAZIE



MEAT GLASSY / GLAZIE / GLACIE. 
Meat Glassy or Meat Glacie / Glaze, also known as Fruity Meat Curry or Sweet Mango Beef Curry is an old Colonial Dish. It was probably one of the first experiments of the Khansamas / cooks during Colonial times where a spicy curry dish was made more palatable with the addition of Sweet Mango Chutney or chunks of fruit such mango or pineapple which reduced the spiciness of the dish giving it a slightly spicy - sweetish - tangy taste. Major Grey’s Mango Chutney, Col. Skinner’s Mango Chutney and the Bengal Mango Chutney were normally used in this Anglo-Indian dish in the olden days.
The term Glassy or Glazie’ was a misrepresentation of the word ‘Glace’ by the cooks in the olden days. (Glacé is a rich brown stock obtained by browning bones and vegetables in a roasting pan before combining them in a pot with water to get a thick rich stock with a more pronounced flavor and deeper color).  


Serves 6   Time required: 1 hour
Ingredients
 ½ kg boneless Beef or Mutton cut into steaks 
3 large onions sliced finely
2 tablespoons Sweet Mango Chutney (any brand) or 1 cup of mango or pineapple chunks 
2 large tomatoes chopped finely or 2 tablespoons tomato puree 
2 teaspoons ginger garlic paste
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 one inch pieces of cinnamon
1 Bay leaf
1 teaspoon ground pepper
2 teaspoons chillie powder 
2 teaspoon Coriander powder
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon plain flour
3 tablespoons oil

Flatten the beef or mutton with a mallet to break the fibers. Marinate   the meat with the flour, a pinch of salt and pepper, and ½ teaspoon of ginger garlic paste for about one hour.
Heat oil in a pan and fry the marinated meat (a few pieces at a time) till brown and half cooked. Remove and keep aside.
In the same pan, (add a little more oil if desired) fry the onions, Bay leaf and cinnamon till golden brown. Add the ginger garlic paste, pepper, chillie powder, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and tomato and fry well on low heat for a few minutes till the oil separates from the mixture. Add the fried meat pieces and mix well so that all the pieces are covered with the mixture. Add 2 cups of water and cook on low heat till the meat is tender and the gravy thickens. Now add the Sweet mango Chutney or fruit and mix well. Cover the pan and simmer for 2 or 3 more minutes, then remove from heat.
Serve with steamed white rice or as a side dish with bread. 

Sunday, February 5, 2017

KEDGEREE - AN OLD COLONIAL RICE DISH WITH DAK BUNGALOW EGG CURRY



KEDGEREE
Kedgeree is an Anglicised version of the Indian Kitchri or Kitchidi, prepared with rice, lentils, raisins, etc along with the addition of Fried Fish Flakes and hard boiled eggs. Fish, either steamed or fried was a regular item for breakfast during the British Raj and the cooks or khansamas of those times, tried to incorporate it with local dishes. Eventually the Fish Kedegeree became a hot cooked spicy dish, with the addition of various spices and was invariably included in the breakfast menu all over the Commonwealth.  However, it now finds a place on the Lunch Menu at many homes and restaurants serving Colonial Anglo-Indian Food.  Minced meat could also be added as a variation
 Serves 6     Preparation and cooking Time 45 minutes
Ingredients
½ kg good fleshy fish cut into thick fillets
2 cups raw rice or Basmati Rice
4 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon ghee or butter
3 onions sliced finely
3 green chillies sliced lengthwise
4 tablespoons Yellow Lentiss / Moong dhal / green gram dhal
3 cloves
2 small sticks of cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin powder
100 grams Sultanas or Raisins (Optional)
3 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves
2 Bay leaves
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon chillie powder
1 tablespoon lime juice / lemon juice / vinegar
6 whole peppercorns
4 hard-boiled eggs cut into quarters.

Cook the fish it in a little water along with the bay leaves and salt for about 5 minutes or till the pieces are firm. Remove the fish carefully. Remove the bones and skin from the boiled fish and break into small pieces and keep aside.  Add sufficient water to the left over fish soup to get 6 cups of liquid.  Wash the Rice and lentils / dhal and keep aside.
Heat the oil in a suitable vessel and sauté the onions, cloves and cinnamon lightly. Add the slit green chillies, whole peppercorns, cumin powder and chillie powder and sauté for a few minutes. Add the rice and lentils / dhal and mix well. Now add 6 cups of the fish soup / stock, lime juice / vinegar, sultanas, chopped coriander leaves and salt and cook on high heat till boiling. Reduce heat and simmer covered till the rice and lentils / dhal are cooked and slightly pasty. Gently mix in the cooked fish, butter / ghee and the hard-boiled eggs. Cover and let the rice draw in the fish for a few minutes. Serve hot or cold with Chutney or Lime Pickle.




Sunday, January 29, 2017

ANGLO-INDIAN COTTAGE PIE or SHEPHERD’S PIE























ANGLO-INDIAN COTTAGE PIE or SHEPHERD’S PIE
Cottage Pie or Shepherd's Pie is a meat pie with a crust of mashed potato. The term cottage pie is known to have been in use since the late 1700s when the potato was being introduced as an edible crop that was affordable for the poor. Moreover, since the term “cottage’ meant a modest dwelling for rural workers and this pie dish was made by them, the name “Cottage Pie” stuck. In the early days the dish was a means of using leftover meat of any kind, and the pie dish was lined with mashed potato as well as having a mashed potato crust on top. The term "Shepherd's Pie" was coined only in 1877, and since then it has been used synonymously with "Cottage Pie", regardless of whether the principal ingredient was Beef, Mutton or Lamb. What started out as a poor man’s dish is a Gourmet Dish today. Here is the Anglo-Indian Version of the SHEPHERD’S PIE
Serves: 6  Preparation Time: 1 hour

Ingredients
500 grams minced meat
2 large onions chopped
2 carrots peeled and chopped finely
3 large potatoes boiled and mashed
1 soup cube either chicken or beef for extra flavor
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon pepper powder
1 tablespoon chopped mint
2 tablespoons grated cheddar cheese
Salt to taste

Method

1. Cook the mince, chopped onions and carrots with ½ cup of water for about 10 minutes till the mince is cooked and the water reduces.
2. Add the crumbled soup cube, salt, pepper, and mint and mix well. Cover and simmer on low heat for 5 more minutes.
3. Make a smooth paste with the flour and 4 tablespoons water and add to the meat mixture. Simmer for 3 or 4 minutes until the meat mixture thickens. Remove from heat and keep aside
4. Season the mashed potato with a little butter and salt. (Add a little milk if too dry)
5. Transfer the cooked meat mixture to a big ovenproof dish.
6. Spread the mashed potato on top evenly using a fork.
7. Sprinkle grated cheese on the potato layer.
8. Bake in a moderate oven (150 C) for 15 minutes till the cheese melts and the potatoes turn golden.

Serve hot with Buttered Toast and steamed veggies 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

ANGLO-INDIAN STYLE MUTTON DO-PIAZA also known as Double Onions Mutton Curry or Twice the Onions Curry



ANGLO-INDIAN STYLE MUTTON DO-PIAZA also known as Double Onions Mutton Curry or Twice the Onions Curry
Dopiaza Mutton or Chicken Dishes were very popular in Anglo-Indian homes in Calcutta and across Bengal. Do Piaza when translated literally means "two onions,". This means that the Do Piaza Curry is prepared with almost double the quantity of onions as compared to a normal Meat or chicken curry. In a Dopiaza Curry, half the quantity of the onions are added raw while cooking the curry and the remaining onions are fried and added to the dish at the end.  The prominent flavour of onions gives a slight sweet taste to the curry.

Serves 6           Time required: 1 hour
Ingredients
½ kg Mutton
4 large onions sliced 
1 large tomato chopped  
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoon chillie powder
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
1 teaspoons coriander powder
1 teaspoon all spice powder or garam masala powder
2 tablespoons lime juice
Salt to taste
3 tablespoons oil
2 green chillies sliced
2 cloves
2 cardamoms
2 one pieces of cinnamon
2 tablespoon curds / yoghurt

Marinate the mutton with chillie powder, ginger garlic paste, coriander powder, spice powder / garam  masala powder and salt and keep aside for 1 hour.
Heat the oil in a suitable pan or pressure cooker and sauté half of the onions till golden brown. Remove and keep aside.
In the same pan add the marinated meat along with the bay leaves, green chillies, cloves, cinnamon and cardamom.  Fry on low heat for about 5 minutes. Add the remaining sliced onions, chopped tomato, curds and mix well. Simmer for about 5 minutes. Now add 2 glasses of water and mix well. Cook covered on low heat for 1 hour (or pressure cook for 15 minutes) till the mutton is tender and the gravy is quite thick. Now add the fried onions and mix once. Remove from heat.
Garnish with Chopped Coriander leaves if dersired. Serve with Rice or chapattis.

Note: Beef or Chicken can also be used instead.


Sunday, January 15, 2017

ANGLO-INDIAN BRINJAL PICKLE (AUBERGINE / EGPLANT PICKLE)
















Anglo-Indian Brinjal Pickle (Aubergine / Eggplant Pickle) is a sweet, tangy and slightly hot pickle which is more like a relish. It makes an ideal accompaniment to any curry ans rice as well as with chapatis. It also tastes great in sandwiches. I was tempted to post this recipe after seeing Atul's post
Ingredients 
1/2 kg long purple Brinjals or 1 large seedless one
A sprig of curr leaves
3 tablespoons chillie powder
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
1 cup vinegar
1 tablespoon mustard powder
1 tablespoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 cup Sesame Oil (Til Oil)
1 cup of sugar
2 tablespoons salt
Wash and dry the Brinjals well and cut them into medium size pieces. Heat the oil in a pan and fry the cut Brinjals on high heat for a few minutes till half fried. Remove and drain away the oil. Keep aside.
In the same oil, add the curry leaves, chopped ginger and garlic and sauté on low heat for a few minutes. Add the chillie powder, mustard powder, cumin powder, and turmeric powder and a little vinegar and fry for just a minute to take away the raw smell. Now add the Brinjals, salt, remaining vinegar and sugar and mix well. Cook till the sugar dissolves and till the brinjals are not over cooked. Cool and store in bottles.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Bridget White-Kumar, author of six Anglo-Indian cookbooks, reflects on culture and tradition from the Colonial Anglo-Indian Era - Food Lovers Magazine

SPECIAL FEATURE - FOOD LOVERS MAGAZINE 

Preserving Colonial Flavours

Bridget White-Kumar, author of six Anglo-Indian cookbooks, reflects on culture and tradition from the Colonial Anglo-Indian Era.I hail from a charming little mining town called Kolar Gold Fields, in the erstwhile Mysore State, now a part of Karnataka. I was born into a well-known Anglo-Indian family in KGF, tracing our roots back to British, Portuguese and Dutch ancestry. The Kolar Gold Mines were owned and operated by the British mining firm of John Taylor & Sons for almost a century. Four generations of my family lived and worked in the KGF Mines. The town had an old-world bonhomie about it, and was known for its affectionate and warm people. It was unique in its secular and egalitarian society. KGF was known as ‘Little England’ due to its colonial ambience, and European and Anglo-Indian population. Our lives were greatly influenced by the culture and ways of the Raj.
There was no dearth of British goods in the 1940s and 50s. Goods were imported from England and sold through The English Ware House, Spencer’s Stores and various clubs in KGF. For as long as I can remember, there was always a good supply of Kraft Cheese, Tuna Fish, Polson’s Butter, Colman’s Mustard, Sardines, Baked Beans, Jams, Jellies and Quaker Oats, in our home. Our food habits were typically Anglo-Indian. Breakfast was normally a bowl of porridge, toast with butter, jam and eggs. Sundays saw sausages, bacon or ham on the table. Lunch was a typical Anglo-Indian meal consisting of steamed rice, beef curry with vegetables, ‘pepper water,’ and a vegetable side-dish. Dinner was always dinner rolls with a meat dish; it was an unwritten rule that no one ate rice at dinnertime. We ate beef or mutton every day, fish invariably on Wednesdays and Fridays, and either Pork, Chicken or Duck on Sundays.
quote1(1)  My mum made asimple and delicious dessert, Bread and Butter Pudding, practically every Sunday. She followed an old handwritten recipe that was handed down to her from her grandmother. It was real comfort food; on a cold rainy night, I still feel nostalgic for my mum’s warm Bread Pudding. quote2(1)
My mum was an exceptional cook; even simple dishes tasted delicious when she cooked them. She was versatile and imaginative in the kitchen. She would improvise and turn out the most delicious curries with whatever ingredients were on hand. Our Ayah would grind the masalas for the curry on the grinding stone; in those days everything was prepared fresh and from scratch. Ready-made curry powders were unheard of. And since we had no gas or kerosene stoves back then, every dish was cooked over a wood-fired stove, which only added to the wonderful taste!

Lunch on the weekends were special. Saturday lunch was invariably Mince Ball Curry, Saffron-Coconut Rice and Devil Chutney. On Saturdays, we only had half-days at school, so we were back home by 12.30 pm, ravenously hungry and we’d be assailed by the delicious aromas of mum’s cooking even before we reached our gate.

Cauliflower Foogath
Cauliflower Foogath

The mince for the Ball Curry, had to be just right. The meat was brought fresh from the Butcher Shop, cut into pieces, washed and then minced at home. Like every Anglo-Indian family, we had our own meat-mincing machine, which was fixed to the kitchen table. The freshly ground meat from the machine was then mixed with the required ingredients, shaped into even balls, then slowly dropped into the boiling gravy and left to simmer in a rich coriander and coconut sauce. The curry was famously known as ‘bad-word curry.’ The word ‘ball’ was considered a bad word in those days, and family elders wouldn’t dare utter it for fear of committing a sin.

The Saffron or Yellow Coconut Rice was always prepared with freshly squeezed coconut milk and butter. Like the meat mincer, the coconut scraper was another important appendage of the Anglo-Indian kitchen, fixed firmly to the other side of the kitchen worktable. Sometimes, two fresh coconuts would be broken and grated for the Coconut Rice. The grated coconut had to be soaked in hot water and the thick milk extracted. For every cup of rice, twice the quantity of coconut milk was added – a little more would make the rice ‘pish pash’ or over-cooked, and a little less would leave the rice under-cooked. The raw rice and coconut milk would then be simmered with ghee or butter, saffron, bay leaves and a few whole spices of cinnamon, cardamom and cloves till the rice was cooked perfectly.

A recipe book from the early 20th Century, handed down to Bridget from her mother.
A recipe book from the early 20th Century, handed down to Bridget from her mother.

My favourite dessert was Bread and Butter Pudding. My mum made this simple and delicious dessert practically every Sunday. She followed an old handwritten recipe that was handed down to her from her grandmother. It was real comfort food; on a cold rainy night, I still feel nostalgic for my mum’s warm Bread Pudding.
 The Anglo-Indian community has a long history that can be traced back to the early part of the 16th Century, to the advent of the Portuguese, Dutch and Spanish, who came to India to trade in spices. Towards the latter half of the 18th century, the British made their presence felt with the establishment of the East India Company. With inter-marrying, a new multi-racial community came into existence, which evolved into the Anglo-Indian community.

quote1(1)  In a world fast morphing into a Global Village, many of the old traditional colonial dishes are not prepared in Anglo-Indian homes, as recipes have died with the older generation who cooked with intuition and memory rather than from written notes. quote2(1)
Anglo-Indian cuisine therefore evolved over many hundred years as a result of reinterpreting a quintessentially western cuisine by assimilating ingredients and cooking techniques from all over the Indian sub-continent. Thus a new contemporary cuisine came into existence making it truly ‘Anglo’ and ‘Indian’ in nature; neither too bland nor too spicy, but with a distinct flavour of its own. It became a direct reflection of the new colonial population.
 The British did not like Indian food and taught their khansamas to prepare dishes from their own hometowns. However, over a period of time, a few local ingredients were added to the dishes, and they experimented with making puddings and sweets using local ingredients. Their soups were seasoned with cumin and pepper, roasts were cooked in whole spices like cloves, pepper and cinnamon, and rissoles and croquettes flavored with turmeric and spices. Mulligatawny Soup, Meat Jalfraze, Devilled Beef and Pork were some of these early innovations.
 Anglo-Indian Cuisine is a gourmet’s delight mostly because it makes use of spices like pepper, bay leaves, cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Indian garnishes like chillies, cumin, coriander, turmeric, ginger, garlic, and vinegar are also added in moderation. Yogurt and milk are used in certain preparations to offset pungency. Many dishes have rhyming alliterative names like Doldol, Kalkal, Ding-Ding and Posthole! The very nomenclature of these dishes is unique and original, and synonymous only with the Anglo-Indian community.
 However over a period of time, Anglo-Indian cooking became more Indian than British and more regional. Local ingredients and flavours of a particular region were incorporated in the dishes while the basic ingredients remained the same throughout the country. Coconut-based curries were popular in Anglo-Indian dishes in the south, while mustard oil and fresh water fish were popular ingredients in the Anglo-Indian dishes of Calcutta and West Bengal. And a strong Mughlai influence seeped into Anglo-Indian dishes cooked in Lucknow and parts of North of India. But today, in a world fast morphing into a Global Village, many of the old traditional colonial dishes are not prepared in Anglo-Indian homes, as recipes have died with the older generation who cooked with intuition and memory rather than from written notes. With the intention of preserving those authentic tastes and flavours, I have published six recipe books exclusively on Anglo-Indian cuisine. This personal collection of recipes was compiled with the intent of reviving the old tastes of the colonial era, and thereby preserving the culinary culture and heritage of the Anglo-Indian Community.
Photography by Krishanu Chatterjee  
Posted: January 6, 2017