Ptolemy and Keith came to dinner recently and I decided to do a Vincent Price and Basil Rathbone curry combination.  I told Ptolemy we’d be having a “Ten Boy Curry” via email and she admitted a sense of disappointment, expecting a takeaway from our local Indian restaurant (thinking Ten Boy could be the name of a curry house).  When she realised it was a Silver Screen Suppers extravaganza she was very pleased.

I was supposed to be having a photography lesson with Matt at his lovely Local Gallery in Muswell Hill during the day but alas it was cancelled.  Luckily Pt is VERY good at photography and she took this of my ten boy condiments.

For the record, this time I had these for the ten: mango chutney, spring onions, bananas (these are essential because they are the key condiment in my chum Dougal’s 10 Boy Curry – the first one I ever had), yoghurt, coconut, crushed peanuts, cucumber, almonds, sultanas and some of Ptolemy’s Beal’s Barn Sweet Tomato Chutney.  I love having this as it reminds me of visits to Ptolemy’s place when she lived next to a nursery and we harvested blackcurrants and she made jams and chutneys for them to sell in their shop.

I hope that Shrubhouse won’t mind me pinching this picture.  They are obviously fans of Beals Barn and Ptolemy too…  Aw, she looks so cute in this picture!

The Basil Rathbone India Curry had frozen beautifully – I just froze it the day it was made and took it out the night before serving and let it defrost in the fridge.  Flavours were absolutely lovely.  It is a real winner.

My Vincent Price Chicken Curry was less successful.  In a bid to whittle down the frozen archives I used the leftover Curry Sauce from the Vincent Price East Indian Fish Curry I made for David and Katy.  I fried some diced chicken thighs in butter and then popped them in the sauce and baked them in the oven just as Vincent recommended.  Alas, I think I left them cooking for too long and when I took them out, instead of the chicken floating in a lovely creamy korma-esque sauce, the sauce had separated and was very oily.  I didn’t panic though, I just scooped out the thigh pieces and served them.  They tasted fine but actually were no match for Basil’s curry – universally praised.  Here is my photo of it.

Ptolemy and I had a funny conversation about taking a photo of the curry as we both remembered what Alastair Hendy had told us on the Arvon Foundation food writing course where we first met.  Brown food is very difficult to photograph…  It doesn’t look very appetising does it?  But it was bloody delicious!

Basil’s recipe is Recipe of the Month here until sometime in January 2014 when I plan to do a Burt Lancaster recipe – watch this space…

Basil Rathbone’s India Curry

2 and 1/2 lbs boneless lamb

4 onions

4 tablespoons butter

1 small clove of garlic, minced

Lemon juice

3 green apples

1 and 1/2 lbs tomatoes

Pinch of salt

2 tablespoons curry powder

1 tablespoon paprika

Cut lamb into neat pieces.  Sprinkle with salt and curry powder.  Slice and sauté onions and garlic in melted butter until brown.  Add spices, and cook 15 minutes.  Peel and slice apples, add meat, and cook in juice about 1/2 an hour.  Slice and add the tomatoes and more liquid if desired. Cover the pot and cook slowly until the flavours are truly blended.  When serving, sprinkle with a little salt and add a little lemon juice.  Serve with boiled rice to which a pinch of saffron has been added for colour.

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