Hope all of you had a great start to the week. Ours was dreary in more ways than one. Agastya is not very well…the li’l guy has fever.It started on Friday and is still continuing. He had to miss school today, which he is not very pleased about. Anyway, I have just tucked him in bed after sending off Rengoni. It is not very pleasant to see otherwise active kids, moping around, is it?
Yesterday, I made a lamb curry for lunch.
Lamb is something which we do not have very often. We buy minced lamb which I use in stews and pies, but not as a curry as such. Growing up, I was never fond of it. But, I did look forward to the gravy and the large potatoes that would be added to it…for me they were the best bits of the curry. Usually, the gravy in a typically Assamese mutton or lamb curry would be spicy, but quite soupy in consistency. But, with the addition of freshly ground spices, the taste would be one to die for.
When I made the lamb curry yesterday, I kept the potatoes like back home, but thickened the gravy. With the kids needing extra attention (one, because he was ill, the other, because she thought she was being left out; that’s what happens when you have kids with very little age differences), freshly ground dried spices were given a miss, with the ready made ones saving the day. But, in the end, we did like the final product. Served with plain rice and some fresh salad, lunch was quite well catered for. Although I did wish that my pressure cooker was in running condition, would have saved some more time. So, do feel free to use yours if you have one, and in running order.
Here’s how I made it-
500 gms of lamb, cut into bite sized portions, washed and squeezed well
a paste of 2 large onions(chopped), 6 cloves of garlic(chopped) and 2 inch piece of ginger(chopped)
6 medium sized potatoes, peeled and washed
4 bay leaves
1 tblsp cumin seeds
1whole red chilli, split
1/2 tblsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp+1/2 tsp+1 and 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp(more or less) chilli powder
1 tsp sugar
salt to taste
1 tblsp + 5 tblsp of oil
a tblsp or two of ghee(optional)
4 C hot water(may need more)
1 tsp garam masala powder
a small bunch of coriander, chopped(for garnishing)
- Rub the lamb pieces with the tblsp of oil, 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder and a pinch of salt and keep aside.
- Heat the 5 tblsp of oil in a deep pan. Rub the potatoes with the other 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder and a pinch of salt and lightly fry in the pan. Remove and keep aside.
- In the hot oil, add the sugar. When it starts to melt, add the cumin seeds, bay leaves and the whole red chilli. When they begin to splutter, add the onion, ginger and garlic paste, along with the rest of the turmeric powder and the chilli and cumin powders. Keep stirring over medium heat till the moisture evaporates, and the mixture is dry and lumpy.
- Add the lamb along with salt and cook till the pieces are well coated with the spices and the meat is nicely browned.Do this over low heat, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10-15 minutes.
- Add the water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook till the meat is cooked completely (stir every now and then). Add more water if needed (If using a pressure cooker, all the previous steps can be done in it. After adding the water, bring to a boil, close the lid and cook for 4-5 whistles and check. If the meat is undercooked, close the lid again and cook for a few more whistles. Also check if more water is needed.)
- As for the potatoes, half way through, pierce them all over, lightly, with a knife. The juices will seep in and cook them beautifully.
- Reduce the gravy to the desired consistency.
- Add the garam masala powder and simmer for a minute.
- Remove from heat and add the ghee, if using it. Stir.
- Garnish with the chopped coriander and serve hot with rice or with any Indian flat bread.
We had ours with plain rice and some fresh salad. It was nice, And yes, we did love those potatoes as well