Curry is everywhere in England.
I can’t believe how amazing my Curry Adventures have been so far in London but I think it is time for me to go beyond the London area and what better place to visit than the Pataks factory just outside of Manchester in the town of Leigh, Lancashire. Pataks is responsible in my eyes for making Indian Cuisine the staple of home cooks around the world. It’s a bit of a trek from London to Leigh, so I head up the day before on a Virgin Train through the English countryside to meet Peter Butler the Global Head of Product Development. This is a perfect opportunity for Peter and I to talk curry before I tour the factory and there is no better place than the former British pub Queen Arms which is now Amans Indian Cuisine. In no other country would a Pub be converted to an Indian restaurant. I love England!
By the time I arrive at the train station in Wigan it is getting dark out. The Pataks factory is a 20 minute cab ride away and Amans Indian Cuisine is just a few minutes from there at 184 Chaddock Lane, Worsley, Salford,Greater Manchester. Are you getting the picture that for such a small country cities, counties and regions all bump into each other, from one minute to the next I don’t know which city I’m in . It’s too bad that it is dark out because the old Queen Arm pub is quite impressive and after a £750,000 renovation it is now one of the best Indian restaurants in the area.
Peter and I grab a seat, order a Kingfisher Beer and start looking at the menu. Once again I know I’m in the hands of an expert so I leave all the menu choices to him. He is the head of product development for Pataks after all, he must know his curries.
Peter does not disappoint and orders us a feast. Pappadums and Chutney of course to start off with followed by the Amans Platter of Lamb Chops, Babi Kebab, Chicken Hari Boti and Onion Bhaj. Whata way to start and those Lamb Chops melt in your mouth.
The next dish arrives and just in time, it’s a spicy one, Peri Peri Ribs. Lip smacking good. I don’t think this photo does them justice because they are damn tasty.
Just as the burn starts to leave my lips our next courses arrive. Rack of Lamb with Keema, Mango Chicken and Kamali Duck. Amazing flavours all. I especially loved the lamb and the duck dishes as I’d never had them before and the richness of the meat was offset by the tangy, sweet and spiciness of the sauces. I never knew that Duck was used in Indian cooking. A first for me to try.
Along with these main dishes we also had a few side dishes which included Garlic Naan bread, Palau Rice and Tarka Dhall. I told you it was a feast didn’t I. The Dhall was a stand out side dish, smokey cooked lentils with garlic oh so silky smooth and I think this may replace Chicken Soup as my cold cure.
What a way to start my Curry Adventure outside of London and after a great meal and conversation with Peter I’m very excited to get my tour of the Pataks factory and even more excited that Peter is going to cook some curry with me in the Pataks Test Kitchen. Pinch me this is getting exciting.
This 30 Days of Indian adventure series is sponsored by Patak’s Canada, the world’s leading producer of authentic, quality, and convenient Indian foods, sauces, and pastes. Continue to follow this adventure to find more great ways to Mix in a Little India into your daily life. The opinions on this blog are my own.