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Pineapple Shrimp Qorma

A ‘Korma’ is a rich braised dish native to Northern India with ‘Kurma’ being a more common spelling for a closely related Southern counterpart. For this experiment, I use a set of spices that would mostly be very at home in yoghurt and nut based ‘Korma’ but the choice of shrimp with pineapple in coconut milk is more Southern in spirit. Accordingly, I have decided to call my ‘fusion’ recipe a ‘Qorma’, to reflect the fact that this dish is not quite one or the other… 

The Ingredients

  • 3.4 lb. Shrimp
  • 1 ½ cups fresh Pineapple, cut into chunks
  • 1 small Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small Tomato, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup Cashews
  • 1 can Coconut Milk (398 ml)
  • 3 tbsp. Chili-Garlic-Ginger Paste
  • 3 tbsp. Turmeric
  • ½ tsp.  Cardamom Powder
  • 1 tsp. ground Fenugreek Seed
  • 1 tsp. Whole Clove
  • 1 short stick Cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Salt

The Method

Heat a pot over a medium flame and add 3 or 4 tablespoons of butter. When the butter is foaming, added the chopped onion and stir until the onion is soft and just starting to brown slightly. Next, add the Chili paste and the Turmeric along with the Cardamom, Fenugreek and Salt.

Stir until the mixture is well bended gives of a pleasant aroma and then add the Coconut milk, the Cloves and the Cinnamon stick.

Add the shrimp, pineapple and tomato and turn the heat to low. Allow everything to cook for twenty to thirty minutes, stirring from time to time, until the sauce is slightly reduced and thickened. Stir in the nuts and the Cayenne pepper and allow cook for another 10 to fifteen minutes. If you have a very thick Coconut milk (and the consistency varies tremendously) you may need to add a little water from time to time but, in either event, let the mix cook for long enough to allow the flavors to blend.

At this point, you can serve the dish but it will be much improved if you allow it to cool and then re-heat it later. If you choose to do this, save the nuts and cayenne pepper and only add them when you start to re-heat.

The Verdict

This one was a winner!  Let me say, before anything else, though…  if you make this dish yourself, please follow my example and let it cool and then reheat it after a good resting period before you serve it. When I tasted the sauce just after it finished cooking, it was very tasty but the clove and cinnamon were way too assertive. Afterwards, though, all the spices melded together and the result was really deliciously rounded and smooth.

I served the dish with plain rice spiked with lemon juice and the result was quite nice. For guests (as opposed to just my wife and I) a little more might be in order… some chutneys and papadums, for example… but otherwise, this meal was top-notch as it was.

13 Comments Post a comment
  1. Looks amazing! It must be hard to wait, but I definitely take your word for it 🙂

    August 1, 2012
  2. Love curries – I’ve made a pinapple curry before and it was ok, not a total winner, so looking at yours I’m tempted by the spices and the prawns 🙂

    August 1, 2012
    • If you are going to serve it immediately, I would recommend easing up on the clove… maybe just one or two whole ones. Also, I was think that this dish might be spectacular if saffron replaced the turmeric. The taste would be a bit different of course, but the color would be terrific. I plan to try this sometime…

      August 1, 2012
  3. I could almost smell that delicious curry from way over here across the pond! I make a similar one with prawn and fresh pineapple. We usually make it the day before and then reheat because as you say it definitely tastes better after it has ‘rested’…

    August 1, 2012
    • I was prompted to go with combination this because our local store was selling segments of fresh pineapple that day. A whole one is way more than I need usually and canned just doesn’t cut it.

      August 1, 2012
  4. Do you think it would be possible to substitute chicken for shrimp in this recipe? My husband hates shrimp, but I really would like to make this!

    August 2, 2012
    • Oh absolutely… I might be inclined to brown the pieces at pretty high heat first (don’t cook them through… just lightly brown the outside) then add them at same time the shrimp get added in the original recipe. Boneless chicken breast would work fine but small bone-in pieces would be very flavorful.

      August 2, 2012
  5. Looks good, like a dish I would love to try.

    August 3, 2012
  6. Andrew Harvard #

    love your pics

    August 4, 2012
    • Well, thank you … I’m improving a little but I am still envious of those at other sites!

      August 13, 2012
  7. This made me so hungry for Indian food. Haven’t had any in while, and I’ve never tried cooking it at home. But this recipe just might change that!

    August 13, 2012
    • Kormas can be quite complex, but this one is pretty straightforward 🙂

      August 13, 2012

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