Within a day or two of my arrival in Calcutta I had my first brain curry. Mildly spiced and buttery, I loved its melting smooth texture, and wanted to reproduce the dish on return. When brains became increasingly difficult to find in England I experimented with sweetbreads instead, which worked a treat. Serve with basmati rice and a mixed green salad.
Soak the sweetbreads in cold salted water for an hour or two, changing the water once or twice to get rid of all traces of blood. For the final half hour of soaking add the wine vinegar to the water.
Meanwhile, prepare the other ingredients. Cut open the chillies under running water and discard the seeds and stems. Peel the ginger and chop finely together with the chillies. Peel the onions and slice into thin rings.
Drain the sweetbreads and pull off any skin that comes away easily. Melt
Season to taste with a little sea salt. Transfer to a heated serving dish; if necessary you can cover the dish and keep it warm in a very low oven for up to half an hour until you are ready to eat. Just before serving, sprinkle the coriander leaves over the sweetbreads.
© 2010 Josceline Dimbleby. All rights reserved.