Rice or naan?

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Thinking about it, I haven’t been to an Indian for ages, and I’m getting all hungry translating this survey into naan awareness.

I’m naan all the way, especially as in Japan long-grain rice is a bit of a rarity, and Japanese native short-grain rice does not go well at all with Indian curry. Japan’s native “curry”, usually just a spicy stew, does work well with native rice, but even though I quite often eat it at home, I wouldn’t pay good money to a restaurant for it.

Here’s a random curry and naan from a random restaurant in Tokyo; although at first glance the photo could be from anywhere in the world, the wet towel, the bill on the table, and the gum syrup for the ice coffee, perhaps, in the metal tumbler all point to Japan:

Dal Curry + Cheese naan @ Shanti @ Komagome
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Curry eating habits in Japan

About how often do you eat curry at home? graph of japanese statisticsI must have missed the first two times this survey came around, as I see this survey from MyVoice into curry is marked as their third time of asking. I’ve previously done DIMSDRIVE on curry, however.

Demographics

Over the first five days of August 2009 13,747 members of the MyVoice internet community successfully completed a private online questionnaire. 54% of the sample were female, 1% in their teens, 15% in their twenties, 34% in their thirties, 30% in their forties, and 20% aged fifty or older.

Most Japanese currys are really more like spicy stews, and as you can see from Q5, none of the top brands have Indian branding. I usually have currys made from dehydrated roux base, which are OK I suppose, but very occasionally I have a boil-in-the-bag, which are excellent! Sadly, there’s no Indian curry houses nearby that I can get a proper carry-out from.
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Murdering curry in Japan

Do you like curry rice? graph of japanese statisticsI think it might just be Scottish slang, but “I could fair murder a curry/Chinese/Mick Jagger” indicates a not inconsiderable desire to consume said item, and of course the second slang meaning fairly describes how people feel on first tasting Japanese curry. This survey from DIMSDRIVE Research looked at how the Japanese consume curry rice.

Demographics

Between the 23rd of July and the 7th of August 2008 9,921 members of the DIMSDRIVE monitor group completed a private online questionnaire. 52.7% of the sample were female, 1.3% in their teens, 13.7% in their twenties, 34.0% in their thirties, 29.6% in their forties, 15.1% in their fifties, and 6.3% aged sixty or older. In addition, 14.0% lived alone, 64.1% were married, and 51.9% had children.

The name “curry rice” helps differentiate from “proper” curry; this Japanese invention, served at countless restaurants up and down the country, is usually half a plate of standard Japanese short-grain sticky white rice and half a plate of spicy stew. At home the stew is usually prepared from dehydrated blocks of sauce.

My wife cooks lovely curry with lots of potatos, but what most of the prepared mixes lack is a complexity of flavour. I was over in the USA last week and had a curry at a cheap food court, but just to get long-grain Basmati rice and a complex blend of spices that had soaked through the ingredients over many hours was heaven!
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