Why Does Curry Taste Better the Next Day?

I’ve noticed in the past that leftover curry often tastes better the next day.

I asked myself why this happens and did some searching on the Internet to try and find out why.

The first explanation that I found says that leaving a curry overnight lets the spices and juices infuse themselves into the main ingredient (such as meat or chickpeas).

The next explanation was very similar and said that the flavour is more enhanced if the curry is frozen and then defrosted later.

Another explanation is that the curry is being cooked twice and the ingredients blend together even more than when they are cooked once, with liquid reduction causing the flavour to concentrate in the curry.

Generally speaking, the consensus is that the spices continue to release their flavours into the curry. If you eat a curry as soon as it is cooked for the first time then you stop this secondary flavouring from happening.

I couldn’t find any scientific facts to bring to the discussion and even some chefs didn’t know exactly why most curries taste better the next day.

But everyone acknowledges that curries do indeed often taste better with the second cooking with the best enhancement coming if a curry is frozen and then defrosted before being cooked again.

If I have leftover curry then I always freeze it and take it into work for a tasty lunch.

Post a comment on this article if you’ve got any other explanations why a curry tastes better the next day.

3 Comments

  1. You are 100% right mate. Infact, tonight I made 3 servings of a butter chicken sauce and am freezing it down for later use! Tastes better the next time you cook it up and it takes less time if you want a curry in a hurry lol.

  2. when ever i make a chicken tika masala i always make it the day before and leave to let all those chillis , garlic, spices, ect fuse,and marinate together for a good 24 hours the taste is amazing so much worth the wait……..thank you..

  3. If it is to be eaten the next day, it is best to leave it outside the fridge. In India, curry dishes travel on non-ac trains. It is eaten with their flat breads all along the way…. quite often in hot hot weather.

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