Chinese What: Hot garlic fish curry Where: China Garden Restaurant How much: Dhs32 Who knew the Cantonese made curry? While a liberal use of chilli is common throughout Chinese cooking, curry dishes are not. This unusual dish is an original creation from the restaurant chain’s own chef, Ricardo Frias. The key ingredients that provide the curry punch are red and green chillies, garlic and vinegar. Al Barsha (04 325 6682); Safa Centre (04 394 3434); Karama (04 396 5884).
Indian What: Kali mirch ka murgh Where: Zafran How much: Dhs45 This Indian curry is extremely hot. Unusually for Indian dishes, the heat comes not only from the use of chillies (red and green), but from freshly ground black peppercorns. Extra power is added with mace and curry leaves. Also worth looking out for on Zafran’s menu is the innovative take on rogan josh, involving stone moss flower, bone marrow and spiced avocado mash. Dubai Marina Mall (04 399 7357).
Japanese What: Beef curry Where: Wok In How much: Dhs72 Although not strictly a traditional Japanese dish, curry is very popular in Japan and is cooked both in restaurants and homes. The curry is sweeter and fruitier in flavour than many of its Asian counterparts thanks to the use of apples, and is rarely spicy, instead offering a milder, mellower flavour. The curry sauce is also often served with panko-crumb (breadcrumbed) cutlets, known as ‘katsu’. Mövenpick Hotel Deira (04 444 0111).
Southern Indian What: Gosht chettinad Where: Chor Bazaar How much: Dhs86 The gosht chettinad is a popular dish from the Chettinad region in the south of India – this mutton curry is typical of southern Indian cooking thanks to the use of fresh coconut milk. The curry is flavoured with several aromatic spices, including mustard seeds, curry leaves, asafoetida, star anise and cinnamon, giving it a delightfully nuanced flavour. Ibn Battuta Gate Hotel (04 444 0000).
Thai What: Gaeng kiew wan gai Where: Mango Tree How much: Dhs65 Gaeng kiew wan gai is also known as Thai green curry because the cooking process starts with a green-coloured curry paste, which gets its vibrant colour from basil and ivy gourd leaves. This is the most classic Thai curry and offers the potential for maximum heat: each curry is served to the guest’s preferred spice level. If you want more chillies, you’ll get them. Souk Al Bahar, Downtown Burj Khalifa (04 426 7313).