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Korma Curry Paste

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Korma paste can be made easily and quickly

I’m sure you’ve seen those jars of curry pastes at the supermarket but nothing compares to homemade.

My kids love a good korma so we always have some of this korma paste on hand in the fridge or freezer. 

This style of korma paste is different to jarred and needs to be stored in the fridge or freezer. It’s much better than anything you can get in a jar though!

Korma Daag Recipe

Korma paste (daag) keeps well in the fridge for up to three days.

This is a korma paste daag

This style of korma paste is what is referred to by many cooks in India as a daag.

Daag isn’t a commonly used term but it refers to a fresh paste like this korma paste that can be stored in the fridge or freezer.

All you need to do to finish the korma is add some cream and your main ingredient of choice such as chicken and your korma is ready.

You can make daags using any of the curry recipes on my site. Just be sure to leave out any dairy products and don’t add too much liquid. This is all best done at the final cooking stage.

This korma paste is used to make a British korma

Korma is actually a style of cooking where meat and/or vegetables are braised in liquid until cooked through.

An authentic korma can be spicy or mild but the British version is alway mild, sweet and creamy. In fact, a British korma isn’t actually a korma at all. It’s just called that. 

By preparing this fresh korma paste in advance, you will be able to whip up a delicious BIR (British Indian Restaurant) style korma whenever you want in minutes.

The base sauce is essential.

The base curry sauce used in most British Indian restaurants is also a very basic daag.

Different ingredients are added to the base curry sauce to make many different curries quickly at curry houses around the UK. As this korma paste is used for a British style korma, you will need to prepare a base sauce to make it.

Two daags in one! Here is one of my base curry sauce recipes. If you have any left over, you can freeze it to make another daag or any of the BIR curries on my website. 

Why not just make a korma instead of this korma paste?

I developed all of my British Indian restaurant (BIR) recipes so that they could be made in about ten minutes, just as they are at restaurants.

The thing is, if you are having a large group over with varying curry preferences, doing a little work ahead of time and making a few daags will make it all go much more smoothly.

No need to get your spices out and other ingredients ready! You can just stir some of this korma paste into a pan, add a little water and your main ingredient of choice and your job is done.

You could also add a bit of cream at the end if you like.

Other uses for this korma paste…

Chicken korma is by far the most popular restaurant style korma.

That said, many other combos can be made and enjoyed by simply stirring the meat, vegetables, seafood or paneer into this prepared korma paste.

If using raw meat, you will need to add a little water of spice stock and let it cook until tender. Seafood, vegetables and paneer cook much quicker.

Why not invent your own creamy coconut curry with this korma paste? Fry up a few chillies and add some chilli powder and you will have something totally different to a British korma but equally as delicious.

How to add the main ingredient to this korma paste…

If cooking a meat korma, I usually pre-cook the meat or poultry to save time when cooking the end korma dish. This tandoori murgh malai tikka is awesome in a korma.

You could however add raw meat, seafood and/or vegetables. Stir them in and add water to simmer until tender. This takes longer but the lengthy cooking time will add delicious flavour to the curry. 

Making a daag

Tempering the cardamom and cinnamon in hot oil.

Making a korma paste or daag

Curry leaves aren’t usually added to kormas but I love them. Add them if you like.

Making a daag

Garlic and ginger paste added.

Making a daag

Adding the cashew paste, sugar, almond flour and coconut flour.

Making a daag

As the ingredients heat up, add some base curry sauce.

Making a korma paste or daag

Adding more sauce and block coconut.

Making a daag

The essential East End Foods rosewater.

Korma daag

Store in small single portions up to large eight person servings.

Korma daag

Watch this space for more popular daag recipes.

Here are more curry house curry favourites you might like to try!

Chicken Korma
Chicken Madras
Lamb Rogan Josh
Chicken Dhansak
Lamb Vindaloo
Chicken Chilli Garlic
Chicken Patia
Lamb Bhuna
Butter chicken

Note: To add more fluid when cooking your korma curry, you can add coconut milk, more base sauce, spice stock or water. Don’t forget to add a good dose of single cream at the end!

Yield: 8

Korma Curry Paste (Daag)

Korma Curry Paste (Daag)
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 3 tablespoons rapeseed oil or ghee
  • 4 green cardamom - lightly bruised
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 20 fresh curry leaves (optional)
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons garlic and ginger paste
  • 3 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
  • 3 tablespoons almond flour
  • 3 tablespoons raw cashew paste or more almond flour
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 600ml heated base curry sauce
  • 100g block coconut
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons rosewater


  1. Heat the oil/ghee over medium high heat. When visibly hot, add the cinnamon stick and cardamom pods.
  2. Sizzle for about 30 seconds and then add the curry leaves if using.
  3. Stir in the garlic and ginger paste and then the sugar, almond flour and raw cashew powder.
  4. The pan will be quite hot so add about 250ml of base curry sauce to cook it down and form a thick paste.
  5. Add the rest of the curry sauce and the block coconut and let it simmer until the coconut blends into the sauce. You can add more base curry sauce or spice stock if needed.
  6. Pour in the rose water and garam masala and stir it all up nicely.
  7. You korma daag is ready to use or store. You can use it to make single servings by adding about 1/8 of it to a pan and adding the main ingredient/s of your choice. Stir in cream and add salt to taste to finish the dish.

Did you like this recipe?

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I hope you enjoy this korma paste recipe and also try making similar daags with my other recipes. If you have any questions, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you. 

Jade Barendsen

Saturday 8th of February 2020

Your curries recipes are my go-to for all curries!! They are absolutely the best ones I have found! One question I have is, for the "Daag" recipe, I can't find "block coconut" anywhere here in Italy. Can I use coconut cream instead? Also, is this the same korma recipe as the original one from your red cook book?

Dan Toombs

Monday 10th of February 2020

Hi Jade

Thanks for getting in touch. You can definitely use coconut cream. Just add it to taste. This recipe is different to the one featured in my cookbook. :-)

Thanks, Dan

Daniel Armstrong

Sunday 4th of December 2016

Mr Toombs Sir, you are a hero and a genius. I have been cooking authentic Indian currys for around 8 years now. It is true that I have nailed them. However, I was always chasing the British Indian Restaurant style and naively thought I would happen upon it through knowledge of Indian cuisine. We have 3 young children so struggle to get to restaurants. Not only has your website given me all the secrets I craved, but has also increased my kitchen efficiency. Please release hard copies of your recipes, I hate using electronic devices as I cook.

Dan Toombs

Friday 9th of December 2016

Hi Daniel

Thank you very much! I'm really glad you like my recipes. I have a hard bound cookbook coming out in May 2017 with loads of recipes and photos. :-)

Cheers, Dan

Lee Cooper

Sunday 27th of November 2016

I tend to bring back a load of curry leaves or have friends bring them when they come to stay in Egypt, but a Sri Lankan chef that I utterly respect reckons you can get by with half the quantity of bay leaves if you can't find curry leaves anywhere.

Dan Toombs

Tuesday 29th of November 2016

Hi Lee

He's right but the flavour it completely different. Curry leaves are my favourite herb. There's no substitute.

Cheers, Dan

Kevin | Keviniscooking

Tuesday 15th of November 2016

I need to find some curry leaves, I need this one! Thanks Dan.

Dan Toombs

Friday 18th of November 2016

Thanks Kevin

I've had trouble finding them when I've been back home in CA. Good luck!

Cheers, Dan

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