ABF The Soldiers' Charity Big Curry

It's been a long time since we had a war that touched Brits on our home ground. The arenas of war are far removed and unfamiliar; we see them daily on the TV and in the papers, but it's hard to really understand what our soldiers are doing, why they are doing it and what they are going through, on our behalf.

For those of us not in the military, it's hard to imagine the life of a soldier, in combat or not. But can you imagine what it's like, for both serving and retired soldiers (and their families), to discover that your country is unwilling or unable to give you all the support you need during and after your time of service?

ABF The Soldiers' Charity is there to fill that gap, whether it's financial assistance when in need; help in organising and funding training, education and support to secure employment after leaving the army; practical (and emotional) help in adapting to physical disability, including modifications to homes and transport; top up grants to cover the costs of care homes for elderly veterans…

Supporting our soldiers and their families since 1944, they are asking you to step forward and join their Big Curry campaign to help raise funds.

It’s much easier than you think to cook a fabulous Indian feast at home and share with it family and friends.

Here is some advice from Mamta’s Kitchen to help you plan your menu:

Find your band (according to how many you are cooking for and whether you wish to cater to vegetarians, pescetarians or omnivores) and then choose your dishes from our suggestions below.

  • 4-6 omnivores – 1 vegetarian, fish or meat starter, 1 poultry or meat main, 1 vegetable side dish or 1 daal, 1 rice, 1 bread and 1 raita
  • 4-6 pescetarians – 1 vegetarian or fish starter, 1 fish main, 1 fish main, 1 vegetable side dish or 1 daal, 1 rice, 1 bread and 1 raita
  • 4-6 vegetarians – 1 vegetarian starter, 1 vegetable main, 1 vegetable side dish or daal, 1 rice, 1 bread and 1 raita
  • 7-12 omnivores and pescetarians – 2 vegetarian, fish or meat starters, 1 meat biryani, 1 fish or poultry main, 1 vegetable side dish, 1 daal, 1 rice, 1 bread, 1 raita, 1 side salad, 1 pickle
  • 7-12 vegetarians – 2 vegetarian starters, 1 vegetable biryani, 1 vegetable main, 1 vegetable side dish, 1 daal, 1 rice, 1 bread, 1 raita, 1 side salad, 1 pickle

When cooking for 4-6 people, make the amounts as given in the recipes. For 7-10 guests, scale the recipes up by 1.5 times. For more than 10, double the amounts. If you’re catering a much larger party, you may prefer to keep the number of dishes low and make larger amounts.

We’ve also suggested some Indian desserts below, should you wish to push the boat out, though we often serve fresh fruit or ready made ice cream ourselves.

Vegetarian Starters

Green Banana Kebab
Paneer Malai Tikka Kebab
Spicy Stuffed Potato Halves
Fruit Chaat

Pescetarian (Fish) Starters

Mackerel Kebab
Spicy Fried Fish

Meat Starters

Sheek Kebab
Chicken Tikka

Vegetarian Mains

Stuffed Aubergines
Dum Aloo Potato Curry
Matar (Peas) Mushroom Curry
Matar Paneer Mughlai
Sag Paneer Curry
Chickpea Curry

Pescetarian (Fish) Mains

Prawn Curry
Fish Curry with Wholegrain Mustard
South Indian Fish Curry

Meat Mains

Mum’s Lamb Curry
Mum’s Chicken Curry
Lamb Biryani
Tandoori Chicken
Lamb Saag


Peas or Mixed Vegetables Pilaf
Mushroom Pilaf
Sada (Plain) Pilaf


Mung Daal with Spinach
Brown Daal
Tarka Daal
Urad Daal with Fenugreek

Vegetarian Side Dishes

Cabbage Curry
Carrot and Fenugreek Curry
Aloo Gobhi (Potato and Cauliflower)
Bombay Aloo
Spring Onion Greens and Potato Curry


Cucumber, Onion and Garlic Raita
Mint and Onion Raita



Pickles / Chutneys

Coriander and Mint Green Chutney
Pickled Onions
Aubergine Pickle
Garlic Pickle
Lime or Lemon Pickle

Side Salad

North Indian Salad
Sprouted Chickpea Salad
Cucumber Salad


Mungphali ki Phirni (Ground Rice & Peanuts Milk Pudding)
Vermicelli Kheer
Ginger Kulfi
Sooji (Semolina) Halva

Find out more about Big Curry here