Ask the expert: What is the secret to cooking good Indian food at home?
Umed Singh Rawat, Executive Chef at Bombay Pantry, offers top advice.
"LIKE all cooking, good food starts with the best ingredients.
"Spices are an integral part of Indian food, and it's important to store them in their whole form and in airtight containers. Buy little and often, rather than in big packets! If a recipe calls for ground spices, grind them on the day with a mortar and pestle or small coffee grinder.
"Onions and tomatoes are essential to Indian dishes, as they thicken, sweeten and add texture naturally. Lots of patience is called for when sweating off onions, (up to 1 hour) but the results are so worth it.
"A good Garam Masala will also liven up any dish. Every house in India has their own recipe, which will more than likely have a mix of coriander seeds, cumin seeds, green cardamom, mace, cloves and bay leaves. Try making up one yourself and see which mix you prefer."
Bombay Pantry's Clonskeagh store, which is now open for lunch, is celebrating its tenth year in business. The Indian food chain, which launched in Ireland 17 years ago, has seven takeaway branches in Dublin including Glenageary, Rathmines, Fairview, Ashtown, Bray and Rathfarnham.