When you make curry sauce, do you use instant curry mix? Or do you fry curry powder and flour in butter? In either case, “instant curry mix” and “curry powder” are essential ingredients.In fact, curry powder is needed to make instant curry mix.And how a curry sauce tastes depends on the mixture and quantities of herbs and spices used in the curry powder. Let”Ēs take a tour of an S&B factory to see how these herbs and spices become curry powder and instant curry mix.
The process of making curry powder
Bringing in curry spices from around the world
Over 30 spices are used in curry powder.These spices come from all around the world, including India, South America, and Europe.And because the ingredients that give colour, fragrance, and spiciness to the powder vary depending on the country of origin and season of harvest, the spices that are put into the powder must be adjusted constantly.
Sorting of spices to make a powder
Only high-quality spices are selected to become the basic ingredients of the curry powder. Time is taken to grind the spices into individual powders using a machine called a “stamping mill.” These powders are then measured and mixed together.
Roasting the spices
The powdered spices are thoroughly flame roasted at a temperature of 100°C in order to remove moisture. It is at this point that the special aroma of the curry powder is born.
Letting the curry powder stand
After being flame roasted, the curry powder is put into an underground tank to let stand over a long period of time. This stage in the process is called “ageing.” Here, the individual spices are allowed to settle, with the curry powder gradually taking on a uniform flavour that is mild and mellow.
Next, the aged spices go through a machine with a mesh that is called a “sifter.” Shifting the spices back and forth produces a curry powder with granules of the same size. The powder is then put into a tank for a few additional days to ensure thorough ageing. This results in a rich flavour.
Completing the curry powder
The spices have now been transformed into curry powder. This powder is then delivered to your dinner table as a “red can” product or undergoes further processing to become instant curry mix.
Finishing as a curry powder product
In a fully mechanised process, the curry powder is automatically placed into cans that are completely sealed to keep out air and moisture. Checks are then made to ensure that there are no foreign objects in the cans and that they are of the correct weight. Lastly, there is a visual inspection. More than 8,000 cans can be produced per hour.
Preparing the ingredients
Depending on the product, making instant curry mix requires the addition of spices, salt, flavourings, and flour and oil to the curry powder. Each of these four ingredients is stored in a separate tank.
Frying the flour
Flour and oil is taken from one of these four tanks and fried with curry powder in a cooker at 100°C or more. This releases moisture and brings out the spicy flavour. The type of oil used differs depending on what the final product will be.
Completing the instant curry mix
After the fried flour is cooled, it is placed into a large tank together with the contents of the other tanks, and mixed slowly. This tank is extremely large and is capable of holding over one ton of mixture. The mixture is mixed and blended to ensure that the ingredients are spread out evenly.
Placement into trays
The finishing process involves automatic movement along a 40-metre conveyor belt. The instant curry mix flows from the large tank via pipes into trays. The mix is still warm and soft-much like hot cocoa.
Cooling and hardening
After being placed in the trays, the instant curry mix is transported to a large refrigerator. The soft mix hardens as it is slowly transported over a period of about 30 minutes. During this stage the mix becomes the product that will be shipped to shops.
Packaging and placement in cardboard boxes
The mix undergoes several thorough inspections that involve metal detectors and X-rays. After passing these strict inspections, the mix is packaged. This process can produce 3 million servings of instant curry mix each day. When packaging is complete, the product is placed into cardboard boxes.
Transporting by robots
After being placed in cardboard boxes, the product is stacked neatly in a warehouse. All transport is performed by automatic guided vehicles, which are robots that resemble forklifts. Here, full attention is paid to safety. The product is then shipped from this warehouse to faraway towns as orders come in.
Bringing instant curry mix to your dinner table
Instant curry mix in the shape of a chocolate bar is the most common ingredient of homemade curry sauces. The herbs and spices that were grown and harvested in places all around the globe are delivered to you after a long journey involving numerous changes. In this way, curry is a food that is made by many, many people. Perhaps knowing this will help you see curry-a common dish on household tables-in a special light.