How are you all? Currently blogging from my iPhone and it is not as easy as I thought it would be.
This week has been a little crazy; working on brand new content and a surprise interview with an amazingly talented well known chef. All will be revealed soon.
Right now I am in Arizona and it is hot as fuck. Everybody keeps telling me I came at a “great time,” but 92 degrees of dry heat at the end of October is not my jam.
I know, I know, I shouldn’t be complaining…sunny weather…blah, blah, blah, but I am a seasons girl myself.
I don’t care how basic I sound but I want to wear boots and a scarf and eat pumpkin seeds and make soup. YUP. Basic AF.
Since it is still too warm to make soup I jumped on the curry train.
Ok, so I make curry ALL THE TIME. I am that Indian girl. Super proud too!
I wanted something hearty, warm and filling so I went to a favorite go-to, Lamb Curry.
In India, due to the many influences that have been in out of the country, there are numerous variations to this dish. The Mughali cusine has long represented many parts of India including the north, south, the inner-city of Mumbai and Pakistan.
Lamb and mutton (goat) compliment many spices and bring out a great flavor with the gamey tasting meats.
A popular version of lamb curry is vindaloo. It is a favorite dish in the south of India, particularly Goa, made with fiery spices and some sort of vinegar base….this isn’t the dish I made.
I wanted creamier, thick, slow cooked gravy with chunks of tender lamb so I decided to make Karahi Gosht. It is the perfect, hearty, fall meal.
This dish is primarily Pakistani and is made with numerous spices and is traditionally cooked in tomatoes and yogurt.
The spiciness of the dish combined with the sweetness of the tomatoes mixed with the richness of the yogurt and lamb make for a very delectable plate.
FIRST, I started with the meat.
Originally I wanted to use bone-in leg of lamb. I LOVE meat on the bone, especially lamb. The intense gaminess of the lamb comes through while still on the bone. I also love sucking the bones dry. There is just so much goodness on the bone. The fat on the lamb is what gives it powerful flavor. If you like lamb but don’t like it too lamby just cut out some of the fat.
Think I went on a little tangent there.
Originally I wanted to use bone-in leg of lamb. Justin went to the butcher to pick me up the leg. He managed to grab the last bone-in piece they had!
When I came home from work to marinate the lamb (garlic and ginger)…there were NO BONES in the paper.
Yeah, WTF, right?
I was stuck on the fact that Justin had asked for the bone-in piece of lamb, asked him to cut it and he left out the bones!!
One of my deepest fears is over cooking meat. Yeah, my fears are scary.
I did not want the lamb to turn out chewy so I quickly called my brother for a fix. He told me to slow cook the lamb and all would be good in the world. And that is exactly what I did.
First, I started with an overnight marinade of garlic and ginger. I love aromatics. They bring some much depth and flavor to a dish.
After the lamb marinated I dusted it in flour to brown in a pan with a little bit of oil. The flour helps brown the meat and leaves a residual “stickiness” to the pan to make the creamy curry sauce base.
It’s a given in all of my dishes and most Indian dishes, to add rai, black mustard seed and jeeru, cumin seeds into hot oil and temper.
Then, I sliced my onions thin and cut my tomatoes into small chunks.
The key to the creaminess in my dish is the combination of flour and yogurt. While the onions and tomatoes were breaking down I combined chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric, garam masala and black pepper into the yogurt and mixed it up.
I would take a second to taste the yogurt mixture prior to adding it into the onion mixture so that you can adjust your seasonings. My yogurt was not as spicy so I added more chili powder. Shocking, I know.
The most important aspect of this dish is to let all the flavors have time to incorporate and mesh together.
Let the onions, tomatoes, rai and jeeru have, at a minimum, 20 minutes on the stove by itself. Then, add in the yogurt mixture and again, let it sit for 20 minutes with a little water.
SIDE NOTE: I ended up adding a few more teaspoons of flour into the mixture to make it thicker and creamier, but if you do this make sure you mix the flour with the moisture that has already been released from the curry in a separate bowl. DO NOT ADD RAW FLOUR DIRECLTY INTO THE PAN. Little chunks of gummy flour will float around in your curry, it will not be thick and it will not taste right. Pre-warning you! Mix the flour or cornstarch if you prefer in a separate bowl with fresh water, or from water that was added into the curry. Mix until it forms a paste and then add it back into the curry.
Once the onion and yogurt mixture has had time to play together add in the seared lamb chunks some salt to taste, mix well and let sit on low for 1 ½ – 2 hours. The meat will be so tender and will fall apart with the touch of a fork.
When the lamb is cooked turn off the heart and sprinkle with cilantro and let it sit for an additional 10 minutes.
I ate this with garlic naan and rice because I needed to carbo-load for the long night of television, buttttt do YOU! Or just eat the lamb by itself.
I want to give a quick shout out to my bro for giving/sharing with me his lamb curry tips! He is a scholar and a gentleman.
Talk to you Friday! Xx
- 1 ½ lbs. bone-in or out, leg of lamb cut into small chunks
- 10 cloves of garlic
- 2 green chilies slit in half
- 1 ½ pieces of ginger
- 1 onion, sliced thin
- 1 large tomato or 2-3 small tomatoes, chopped small
- 2 ½ tbsp. plain yogurt
- 1 ½ tbsp. cilantro, chopped
- 2 tsp. or to taste chili powder
- 2 tsp. coriander powder
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. black mustard seed
- 1 tsp. garam masala
- 1 tsp. turmeric
- ½ tsp. black pepper
- Salt to taste
- Vegetable oil
- In a food processor grind together garlic and ginger. Set half aside. With the remaining half marinate the chunks of lamb overnight in the fridge.
- Once the lamb has marinated add enough oil to cover the bottom of a pan over medium-high heat. Dust roughly 1 tablespoon of flour onto the marinated lamb and sear the meat until browned (not cooked) about 2-3 minutes.
- Remove lamb pieces. Set aside.
- Add an additional 2-3 tsp. of oil.
- Add black mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Once they crackle add the onions.
- Let the onions caramelize for about 10-12 minutes before adding in the remaining half of the garlic/ginger paste. Turn heat down to medium-low. Continue to sauté for an additional 10 minutes adding water as necessary to prevent from sticking, stirring occasionally.
- Add in tomatoes. Continue to cook until they have broken down, are soft and the oil has separated. About 10 minutes.
- While the tomatoes are breaking down, in a bowl add yogurt, chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric, garam masala and black pepper. Mix well.
- Once the tomatoes have cooked add in the yogurt mixture.
- Stir. Let cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add seared lamb, green chilies and salt to taste.
- Mix to cover lamb.
- Add 1 to ½ cups water, turn the heat on low and let simmer for 1 ½- 2 hours, or until meat is tender, stirring occasionally.
- Garnish with cilantro and serve warm with roti, naan or rice.
- I ended up adding a few more teaspoons of flour into the mixture to make it thicker and creamier, but if you do this make sure you mix the flour with the moisture that has already been released from the curry in a separate bowl. DO NOT ADD RAW FLOUR DIRECLTY INTO THE PAN. Little chunks of gummy flour will float around in your curry, it will not be thick and it will not taste right. Pre-warning you! Mix the flour or cornstarch if you prefer in a separate bowl with fresh water, or from water that was added into the curry. Mix until it forms a paste and then add it back into the curry. Stir well.
- You may need to add more oil into steps 2 and 4 depending on the size of your pan, amount of meat and masala. Use your best judgement by managing the masala and how it sticks to the pan.