Photo by Tamara West
This curry is a version of one of Madhur Jaffrey’s lamb curries. The whole fennel and cumin seeds melt into the meat during cooking, but remove the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom before serving. Last time I made this I had some lamb rump trimmings in the fridge so used those and they worked well. As you are cooking with yoghurt the sauce separates, but give it a good stir before serving. Madhur Jaffrey washes her rice well then soaks rice for 30 minutes before cooking.
|5 Tbsp||Olive oil, or sunflower oil|
|800 g||Lamb shoulder, boneless, cut into 5cm pieces|
|1||Onion, finely sliced|
|5 cm||Cinnamon sticks|
|4||Cardamom pods, black|
|1 tsp||Cumin seeds|
|1 tsp||Fennel seeds|
|1½ cups||Plain unsweetened yoghurt, use thick yoghurt|
|2 Tbsp||Ground coriander|
|1 Tbsp||Fresh ginger, peeled and grated|
|1 tsp||Flaky sea salt|
Baked basmati rice
- Head the oven to 160C.
- Rub the lamb with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Heat an ovenproof casserole dish (or use a large frying pan to do this initial pan-frying if your casserole dish is not suitable for stove-top use), over a medium-high heat and brown the lamb, in batches so as not to overcrowd the pan. Transfer lamb to a plate.
- Pour the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil into the ovenproof dish and when hot, put in the onion, cinnamon, cloves, black cardamom, cumin and fennel seeds. Stirring, pan-fry until they just begin to colour.
- Return meat to the dish along with the yoghurt, coriander, fresh ginger and salt. Stir well, bring to a simmer, then cover dish with baking paper and its lid.
- Place in the oven and cook for 2½ hours until the meat is very tender. Remove from the oven and stir twice during cooking.
- Serve lamb curry with baked rice (recipe below), Indian flatbreads, Indian relish, a few little radishes and cashew nuts. A quick stir-fry of chopped spinach with cumin seeds, garlic slivers and a good pinch of cayenne pepper is good too.
Baked basmati rice
- Place rice in a fine sieve and wash under cold water until the water runs clear. Place washed rice in a bowl and cover with fresh water and leave to soak for 30 minutes. Drain well.
- Heat the oven to 160C.
- Pour the tomato pulp into a measuring jug. Add enough vegetable stock to make up to 2 cups of liquid.
- Pour the oil into an ovenproof casserole dish (or use a frying pan), and heat over a medium-high heat. Add the onion, peppercorns, cloves and bay leaf and stir until they just begin to colour.
- Add the drained rice, and stir gently for about 1 minute. Add the tomato liquid and salt. Stir and bring just to the boil.
- Cover the dish with baking paper and foil, pushing it down so it sits on top of the rice, then place on the lid. Place in the oven and cook for 30 minutes. Use a fork to fluff up the rice before serving.