Recipe – Spicy Lamb Curry with Dark Rum


I perfected this recipe in my kitchen and have fond memories of many Sunday lunches when friends came over and we had great times over food and drinks. The basic recipe is of Mughlai lamb ( Mutton) curry with addition of Dark Rum. The dish is rich and full of aromatic spices which is a specialty of Mughlai cooking.  Although Mughlai preparations can be eaten all over India but it is the specialty of the North India. This is not a dish for calorie conscious but for those who relish rich food a  perfect dish for a Sunday meal on a cold winter day. Hope you will enjoy it as much I do. So, here is the recipe for all you meat lovers.

Ingredients : 

Mutton (Lamb Meat)  –  1 kg ( shoulder of lamb and front quarter provides the best meat) Cut into small pieces

Yogurt – 1 cup (Beaten)

For Gravy –

Onions – 3 large (cut very fine)

Ginger – 1 inch (grated or finely chopped)

Garlic – 6 pods (finely chopped or grated)

Tomatoes – 5 Large (grated)

Spices –

Black cardamom – 3

Green cardamom – 4

Cinnamon stick – ½ inch

Clove – 4

Black pepper corn – 5 -6

Whole red chilies – 4

Bay leaf – 1

Cumin seeds – ½ teaspoon

Asafoetida – 2 pinch

Salt to taste

Red chilli powder – 1 teaspoon (as per taste)

Fresh ground coriander seed powder – 4 tablespoon

Garam masala – 1 teaspoon

(You can put first 7 spices in a small muslin pouch, tie it and drop it in the gravy or use them as it is)

Desi Ghee – ¼ cup (clarified butter)

Dark rum – 60ml

For Garnish – Fresh green Coriander – half cup ( finely chopped)

 

Method –

 

Marinade the lamb pieces by smearing yogurt and a little salt over them. Cover with cling foil and keep aside.

Heat ghee in a heavy bottom pan

Add all the whole spices (if using the pouch, just add cumin seeds and asafoetida)

Once the spices crackle add chopped onions and salt. (Fine chopping gives a different texture and flavor than grated. Adding salt will help the onions to become crisp brown.  Indian food is all about passion and the more you give it time and patience the better it going to be)

Keep the flame on medium and stir onions till translucent.

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Add garlic and ginger at this point. (It is important to follow steps. At what point a certain ingredient is added changes the taste of the dish)

Fry them till golden brown then add the red chili powder and half a cup of water so the chili powder doesn’t burn, adding chili at this point with give the gravy a good color.

When the water is reduced and the mixture becomes browner add the powdered spices and mix well. The aroma will tell you when they have blended well.

At this point add grated tomatoes. I don’t puree them, grating gives a better color.

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Keep the flame on high and stir the mixture till the oil starts leaving the sides.

Once the mixture is properly done add one cup water. (It you are using spice pouch, add it now)

Lower the flame and let it simmer till nicely browned and reduced to thick paste

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Add the lamb pieces and raise the flame to high.

Keep stirring till all the pieces are fully covered in the paste.

Roast the meat in the gravy till oil starts to separate and the mutton is nicely done.

Check with a fork or knife to see if it’s become a bit soft.  It should be half done by now.

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Add enough water to cover the lamb pieces completely.

Check salt and add more if needed.

Add dark rum at this point and keep the flame high.

I use Old Monk but you can use any dark rum. Rum is a tenderizer also and it gives a distinct flavor to the curry. You can use up to 120 ml of rum depending on taste.

Turn the flame to slow now and cover the pan with a lid.

Let the curry cook on slow flame till the lamb pieces are soft and break on touching.

I make thick gravy but you can change the consistency according to taste.

Once done, stir in half of the chopped fresh coriander.

Take out the aromatic mutton curry in a serving dish and garnish with the remaining fresh coriander

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Serve hot with Nan, Parathas, Roomali Rori, missi roti or rice.

Bon Appetit 

Diwali Special – Roasted Whole Wheat And Green Gram (Moong) Ladoos


No Indian festival is complete without sweets. There is a tradition to make special sweets for each festival but on Diwali one can indulge in a whole variety of them. Winter is time for healthy ladoos made from either whole wheat or gram flour. There are many varieties to make Whole wheat flour (atta) ladoos. I prefer to make them as healthy as possible with just enough clarified butter (pure ghee) to hold everything together so people of all ages can enjoy it. One can use shakkar, boora cheeni or khandsari to make these. I prefer boora cheeni because it is less sweet than normal granular sugar and healthier too.

These ladoos can be stored in air tight box for a long time and can be eaten everyday. The dry fruits and the goodness of green gram adds to the flavor of these balls of good nutrition. Green Gram is low fat protein, high fiber, low Gly-Cemic bean which helps in stabilizing sugar in blood stream. It is also a rich source of iron, vitamin B6/ B1, folic acid, magnesium, vitamin C and E and also calcium which makes it a super food. One can give these to children as snacks everyday.

Now, for the recipe

Ingredients:

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup whole green gram beans

1/2 cup mixed dry fruits ( raisins, shredded walnut, blanched and shredded almonds)

Clarified butter 9 pure ghee) – enough to hold everything together ( usually 1/4 cup)

1/2 cup (according to taste) Boora cheeni or powder sugar or castor sugar

1 tea spoon cardamom powder

Method :

In a heavy bottom cast iron wok dry roast the moong beans till slightly golden brown. Keep the flame very low.

Grind the roasted beans very fine in a grinder. (I used the grinding stone)

Keep the dry fruit mixture , boora cheeni and ground moong beans ready.

Now put the wok back on low flame and add whole wheat flour to it. Dry roast it slowly. This is a tedious job and one needs to constantly keep stirring the flour especially in the middle or else it will start burning. Always keep the flame very low. Roasting atta is like a sensuous passionate love making. No Indian sweet can be made without complete devotion and love. These are the ingredients which make them so mouth watering. Once the aroma of roasted atta begins to fill your senses and the color is nice and brown add the ground moong bean powder to it. Roast a little more till you get a warm light brown color.

Atta is always dry roasted unlike gram flour.

Once the wheat flour is done, remove from heat and quickly add boora cheeni. It will begin to stick to the wok so keep stirring constantly and make sure there are no lumps. Add clarified butter (pure ghee) at this stage and keep mixing.

After the mixture is nicely done add the dry fruits.

One has to make the ladoos when the mixture is warm otherwise it will start solidifying.  Make medium size balls by rolling them in your palm. Make sure there are no cracks and the balls are smooth. put a raisin on top as garnish. Place all ladoos in a thali / plate and let them cool.

Enjoy these wonderful nutritious low fat ladoos and store the rest of them in air tight box.

Have a wonderful healthy happy Deepawali. Stay blessed.