The Story of Cape Curry


Before commercial curry powder was available at the Cape, every cook had his or her own recipe for a curry mix. In the oldest Dutch, Flemish and Cape recipe manuscripts many curry recipes were documented. We chose three* of these traditional curry blends, which we only slightly adapted for use by the modern cook. They are now available from the La Motte Farm Shop (R40 each), making it easy to cook a traditional Cape Curry!

Cape Curries are known for their perfume rather than hotness – especially when compared to Durban curries that use more pepper and chilli spice. Cape Curries are milder and have a typical yellow colour, as they always contain turmeric. Other popular spices are coriander, cloves, nutmeg and saffron. Also typical of the traditional Cape Curry is the sweet-sour taste profile, usually as ingredients include a combination of vinegar and brown sugar or apricot jam. Fruit and dried fruit such as apricots or raisins are often used as part of the curry ingredients or at least served as a side dish in the form of yellow rice with raisins or stewed dried fruit or preserved quince.