Everyone loves a deliciously creamy Korma curry and using almonds, coconut and a selection of spices you probably already have on hand, you can make your own homemade Korma Paste in just 5 minutes. It's really simple to make this paste and it can be used to make a whole range of different curries. This authentic paste is super easy to adapt too.
Making your own curry paste is always a better option than buying a store bought version. You can control exactly what goes in it and also decide on the level of spice you want. It's super quick to make and will fill your kitchen with those wonderful Indian aromas.
If you are looking for some other curry pastes to try, then why not try our Thai Curry Paste recipe.
- Garlic and ginger - We crushed and grated our own, however you can use a ginger and garlic paste.
- Almonds - This adds a lovely texture to the paste and helps to thicken it up. You can use cashews if you prefer.
- Coriander - Fresh coriander helps to lighten up the paste.
- Green chilli - If you really don't like much spice, then make sure you take out the seeds from the chilli before chopping. You can use red chilli if you prefer.
- Tomato puree - This adds some colour and flavour to the paste and also helps to thicken it up.
- Coriander seeds
- Cumin seeds
- Desiccated coconut - This helps to give a korma the coconut flavour that it is known for.
- Garam masala
- Cayenne - This is where some extra spice comes from. Korma isn't traditionally a spicy curry, but we like some heat in our curries. You can either leave it out or add more or less depending on how you like your curry.
- Salt and pepper - Season to taste
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
Step by step
One: Heat a dry frying pan and toast the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, garam masala, coconut, cayenne, salt and pepper, about 2 minutes. Don't heat for too long as it will burn.
Two: Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
Three: In a pestle and mortar, put the almonds, garlic, ginger, coriander (cilantro), tomato puree, desiccated coconut, green chili (if using) and oil.
Four: Pound well until a smooth paste is formed.
Five: Add the toasted spices.
Six: Mix well
Why should you try it?
- Cheaper than store bought curry paste - Considering curry paste is made with spices, it is quite expensive to buy. Our recipe uses cupboard basics and is really cheap to make.
- All natural ingredients - A lot of store bought pastes are full of added ingredients that are needed for a longer shelf life. Our recipe is all natural.
- Totally easy to adapt - Don't love spicy food, or a certain spice? Feel free to adapt it to suit your own tastes.
- Ready in just 5 minutes - This is so quick and easy to make.
What is a Korma?
A korma is a fragrant Indian dish containing meat, usually lamb or chicken, that is gently cooked with spices and dairy. Whilst some korma recipes contain yogurt, others have cream or a combination of the two. You can make a vegan version with coconut milk instead of dairy.
You will find that a lot of korma recipes contain nuts – usually almonds. These are often in the homemade paste and used to thicken the sauce. You can sprinkle the curry with some flaked almonds too.
Kormas are very popular in the UK as they are mild and seen as a gateway curry. The spice levels are pretty mellow, but it has plenty of flavour.
What goes into it?
This Korma paste is made with the most amazing fresh and fragrant ingredients, along with a range of spices that you probably have tucked away at the back of your spice cabinet. It's time to make the most of those spices!
You have coriander, cumin, garam masala, coconut and cayenne mixed with almonds, fresh garlic and ginger, fresh coriander and chilies. A Korma is mild, so don't go too heavy on the chillies, however you can always make it spicier if you want.
How to use korma paste
We have used this in our Chicken Korma and Lamb Korma, but you could also use it with beef or just vegetables or even tofu. This paste really goes with anything and will always make a delicious curry.
You don't have to use it in a curry, you could marinade some chunks of chicken and vegetables in it and then thread them on to pre-soaked wooden skewers and grill.
Store: You can store any left over paste by spooning it into an air-tight container, smoothing it over then adding a layer of oil. This will keep in the fridge for up to 1 month. We usually make extra so we can store it like this for quick and easy homemade curry
Freeze: If you want to freeze this paste, spoon into an ice cube tray and freeze. Once frozen, transfer to a sealable bag and keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Defrost: You can defrost this in the fridge overnight.
Frequently Asked Questions
As long as you make sure that there is no cross contamination, then this is gluten free.
Yes, this is a naturally vegan curry paste.
• You can leave out the chilli, or add more, depending on your taste.
• If the paste is too thick, just add a little water.
• You don't need to toast the spices first, but it really brings out the flavours.
• If you don't have a pestle and mortar, you can use a food processor.
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- 2 garlic cloves
- 30 g piece of ginger
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoon almonds
- 4 tablespoon fresh coriander (cilantro) chopped
- 1 green chilli (optional) chopped
- 1 tablespoon tomato puree (paste)
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 2 tablespoon desiccated coconut
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 0.5 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 pinch sea salt and black pepper
- Heat a dry frying pan and toast the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, coconut, garam masala, cayenne, salt and pepper, about 2 minutes. Don't heat for too long as it will burn.1 teaspoon coriander seeds, 2 teaspoon cumin seeds, 2 tablespoon desiccated coconut, 1 teaspoon garam masala, 0.5 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 pinch sea salt and black pepper
- Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
- In a pestle and mortar, put the almonds, garlic, ginger, coriander (cilantro), tomato puree, green chili (if using) and oil. Pound well until a smooth paste is formed.2 garlic cloves, 30 g piece of ginger, 2 tablespoon almonds, 4 tablespoon fresh coriander (cilantro), 1 green chilli (optional), 1 tablespoon tomato puree (paste), 2 tablespoon olive oil
- Add the toasted spices and mix well.
- You can leave out the chilli, or add more, depending on your taste
- If the paste is too thick, just add a little water
- You don't need to toast the spices first, but it really brings out the flavours
- If you don't have a pestle and mortar, you can use a food processor