Vindaloo is a curry superstar. A staple of Indian restaurant menus around the world, there's no shortage of options for this hot and fragrant curry. And here in Singapore it's no different, with places like Indian Curry House - Tanah Merah, Tandoori Restaurant and Curry Xpress all offering up their own take.
A sensory smorgasbord
This aromatic wonder does gymnastics with your senses. It tastes and smells both sweet and sour. The sauce is luxuriously thick to the point of almost being dry. Outside of India it's often served fiery hot with a peppery scent and practically bursting with fresh red chilli, but traditionally it's a mild curry that focuses on the sweet and sour tastes of vinegar and bite of garlic.
The original vindaloo is served up with pork, but it's a versatile being that goes with just about anything from mutton, beef, chicken, lamb and not to mention seafood and veggies. The only consistent cornerstone is that it is marinated overnight in a fragrant formula of garlic, vinegar, brown sugar, ginger and red chilli.
Spanish methods with Indian ingredients
Vindaloo as we know it comes from Goa – a place of sun, sand and spices located in India's south-west. But before that, its origins lie in a Portuguese dish called carne de vinha d'alhos, which literally translates to 'meat in garlic wine marinade'. This came from sailors who used to marinate pork with wine and garlic in wooden barrels.
Thanks to the arrival of Spanish explorers in India, vindaloo made its home in Goa around the 15th century, and evolved into what we know it as today. The wine was substituted for palm vinegar, local spices like tamarind, black pepper, cinnamon, and cardamom were added, and not to mention the inclusion of that all-important red chilli.
Singapore's selection of restaurants reveal just how adaptable a good vindaloo can be. At Indian Curry House – whose chefs from India use slow fire cooking and specialised woks for their signature curries – serves vindaloo with succulent mutton cooked in a sharp tangy sauce. Over at Tandoori Restaurant, they give juicy prawns the same vindaloo treatment.
Curry Xpress – which specialises in North Indian cuisine and prides itself on using fresh and exotic spices – emphasises the hot fiery flavour and serves the curry with rich mutton, smoky chicken or fresh prawns.
Whether you're after something filling or flavourful, vindaloo will do the trick. Order it at home with Deliveroo.