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Korma is a dish originating in the Indian subcontinent,[1] consisting of meat or vegetables braised with yogurt or cream, water or stock, and spices to produce a thick sauce or glaze.[2]

Korma
Chicken Korma.JPG
Chicken korma
Place of origin Indian subcontinent (now Bangladesh, India and Pakistan)
Main ingredients Yogurt, cream
Cookbook: Korma  Media: Korma

The English name is an anglicisation of Urdu قورمہ, more accurately transliterated qormā,[3] and derived from a Turkic root.[4]

Contents

EtymologyEdit

The word korma is derived from Urdu qormā, ḳormā or ḳormah, meaning "braise", and referring to the cooking technique used in the dish.[2] All these words, and the names of dishes such as ghormeh (Persian language قورمه), the Azerbaijani qovurma or kavarma are ultimately derived from a Turkish language word qawirma meaning "[a] fried thing".[4] The Indian korma is, however, possibly unrelated in a culinary sense to the modern Turkish kavurma or to some other dishes using the same root word, as they use widely varying techniques and ingredients.[5]

HistoryEdit

Korma has its roots in the Mughlai cuisine[1] of the Indian subcontinent. A characteristic Mughal dish, it can be traced back to the 16th century and to the Mughal incursions into the region. Kormas were often prepared in the Mughal court kitchens, such as the famous white korma, perhaps garnished with vark, said to have been served to Shah Jahan and his guests at the inauguration of the Taj Mahal.[6]

Classically, a korma is defined as a dish where meat or vegetables are braised with yogurt, cream or stock added. The technique covers many different styles of korma. The flavour of a korma is based on a mixture of spices, including ground coriander and cumin, combined with yogurt kept below curdling temperature and incorporated slowly and carefully with the meat juices. Traditionally, this would have been carried out in a pot set over a very low fire, with charcoal on the lid to provide all-round heat. A korma can be mildly spiced or fiery and may use lamb, chicken, beef or game; some kormas combine meat and vegetables such as spinach and turnip. The term Shahi (English: Royal), used for some kormas indicates its status as a prestige dish, rather than an everyday meal, and its association with the court.

PreparationEdit

 
A chicken korma dish of Pakistan

The korma style is similar to all other braising techniques in that the meat or vegetable is first cooked briskly or seared using a high heat, traditionally using ghee, and then subjected to long, slow cooking using moist heat and a minimum of added liquid.[2] The pot may be sealed with dough during the last stages of cooking, using a technique called dum or dampokhtak.[2]

The korma can make use of a technique called bagar: later in the cooking, additional spices are mixed with heated ghee and then combined with the sauce formed by the braising; the pan is then covered and shaken to release steam and mix the contents.[7]

There is a wide variation between individual korma and other "curry" recipes. Chilli and ginger are often used, but the precise method of preparation results in widely different flavors. Indian bay leaves or dried coconut may be added, the latter being a predominantly South Indian flavoring.

A korma pilau (pilaf) is a rice and meat dish made with braised meat.[8]

VariationsEdit

In the United KingdomEdit

In the United Kingdom, a korma as served in curry houses is an extremely mildly spiced dish with a thick sauce. It often features almonds, cashews or other nuts, and coconut or coconut milk. In the 21st century chicken korma has several times been cited as the most popular curry in the UK, replacing chicken tikka masala in surveys of public eating habits.[9][10]

Navratan kormaEdit

 
Navratan korma (Mughal kitchen)

Navratan korma is a vegetarian korma made with vegetables and either paneer (an Indian cheese) or nuts – or sometimes both.[11] "Navratan" means nine gems, and it is common for the recipe to include nine different vegetables.

Bulgarian kavarmaEdit

 
Kavarma with egg

Kavarma, also called kavarma kebap is a Bulgarian slow-cooked stew, typically made with pork and vegetables such as leeks. It is traditionally made in a lidded clay pot called a gyuveche.[12] It is a popular dish in Bulgaria and there are many regional variations on the dish, some of which are spicy.[13]

See alsoEdit

References and notesEdit

  1. ^ a b Amjum Anand (2007), My Chicken Korma (Times Online)
  2. ^ a b c d Singh, D. Indian Cookery, Penguin, 1970, pp. 24–25
  3. ^ Korma, Merriam-Webster, accessed 30-01-18
  4. ^ a b Perry, C. "Korma, Kavurma, Ghormeh: A family, or not so much?" in Hosking (ed.) Food and Language: Proceedings of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cooking 2009, p. 254
  5. ^ Perry (2009), p. 256
  6. ^ Chapman, India: Food and Cooking, New Holland, 2009, p. 26
  7. ^ Singh, p. 26
  8. ^ Singh, p. 154
  9. ^ "Korma is nation's favourite curry as Brits shun spicy tastes", Daily Telegraph, 07-10-11
  10. ^ "Chicken tikka masala no longer Britain's favourite curry – here's the new titleholder", Daily Mirror, 07-10-17
  11. ^ "Navratan Korma – Nine-gem Curry". about.com. Retrieved 2010-06-18. 
  12. ^ "Bulgarian Dishes, Kavarma". Quest. Retrieved June 13, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Bulgarian Meals". Find Bulgarian Food. Retrieved June 13, 2015. 

External linksEdit

  •   The dictionary definition of korma at Wiktionary