Someone expressed an interest in this recipe from New Vegetarian Recipes by Mrs. Bowdich, originally published in 1892, and working its way through Project Gutenberg’s Distributed Proofreaders right now. I should point out that I have not tried this recipe and am posting it as an historic curiosity. Notes on modernising it at the end.
½ pint water.
1 teaspoon curry powder.
2 tablespoons cooked haricot beans.
2 ounces butter. (replace with marge, oil or, best of all, vegetable ghee)
1 teaspoon flour.
1 teaspoon salt.
½ teaspoon pepper.
Slice the cucumber, beetroot and shalots, and fry for ten minutes in the butter; add pepper, salt, curry powder and flour, mix well and add water. Simmer for half an hour, stirring frequently.
Notes: The choice of vegetables isn’t that surprising – cucumber being as close as you could get to some Indian veg. Remember this is a British book, and the date — when India was part of the Empire, and British people of a certain class were more than familiar with Indian food. Cucumbers back then were also not as watery as they are now, so maybe use courgettes instead, or squash, or tinda. I’d also roast and grind standard curry spices rather than using a pre-made powder, or use a paste and cut down on the oil. The salt is incredibly excessive by modern standards. Mincing the shallots would give a more authentic texture.