Product Type: Pataks Sauces / Soups
Newest Review: ... Madras, Jalfrezi and Rogan Josh. We chose the Balti paste as we don't often choose a Balti curry and fancied a change. The jar cost us £1.9... more
A Fast way to spice up your life (or your food anyway)
Patak's Balti Curry Paste
Member Name: Boffyboffy
Patak's Balti Curry Paste
Advantages: Fast, economical when compared to pre-prepared sauces
Disadvantages: Pucker your lips! Wow - so much vinegar!
Surprising really that Pataks have such a stranglehold on the curry paste market. Its decent gear, but frankly, NOT that good.
AVAILABILITY. Their pastes are ubiquitous. If a supermarket stocks a curry paste, its probably Pataks.
HISTORY. I don't know how long the stuff has been around, but its a long time. As a curry fan that always used to make up his own curries from (up to a dozen) individual spices, I was introduced to Pataks by a Ugandan Asian pal (booted out of Uganda by the dictator Idi Amin...ask your Mum or Dad if you don't remember him). I first used it in about 1977 - and have done since the present day.
CONVENIENCE. Yes its convenient. Spice flavours start to diminish the moment they are ground, so it is not a good idea to have years-old spices on the shelf. This paste allows easy access to reasonably preserved mix of spice.
OIL??? A previous commenter mentioned the oil in the paste. Oil is essential when using such spices - they must be fried to bring out their full taste (the 'bhoon' - think 'lamb bhuna'). So oil and (light) frying is essential.
TASTE. Quite good, but I agree completely with the previous reviewer> MONSTROUSLY ACID (vinegar).
CONCLUSION. Good as a standby, or for those that rarely make curries who would have 'ancient' spices on their shelves. You should have a strong constitution, because the amount of vinegar is, (In my opinion) - way over the top).
For really good curries, make them yourself, from a recipe book, using (reasonably) fresh spices.
FINAL WORD. Quite passable. It is the easy equivalent for curries as 'Smash' is an equivalent for mashed potato. OK, but not the real thing. At least 'Smash' isn't overloaded with vinegar!
Summary: The acid test - fast, convenient, cheap - nice taste, but can you handle the vinegar?
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