The korma (sometimes spelt kormaa, qorma, khorma, or kurma) is a mild, pale, creamy, curry dish originating in India and can be made with yoghurt, cream, nut and seed pastes or coconut milk. Both vegetarian and non-vegetarian kormas exist.
It is important at which point the meat is introduced. Chicken requires fairly thorough coating with the spice mixture and heating evenly at a fairly high temperature (enough to cook each piece properly), followed by a cooling period after which the yoghurt and cream are added. However, lamb requires a very brief initial cooking period to brown the surface of each piece, followed by a cooling process similar to that used for chicken but with a continuous low temperature. This prevents the lamb from toughening, a particular problem if a large amount is to be cooked; temperature heterogeneity is difficult if the mixture is left to stand. This low cooking temperature is usually quite difficult to achieve, but if done correctly results in a memorable dish.
There is a wide variation between individual korma and other mild curry recipes. Chili is nearly always used, but the precise method of preparation results in widely different flavours; likewise the way that the ginger is divided and cooked is critical. Bay leaves or dried coconut may be added.