Friday, 10 February 2012

Mutton red curry

I am not that much of a mutton fan. The closest I've come to liking it is in a biryani, that too if its got loads of masala and such. In my initial cooking days (like about 4 years back), the only thing I could cook with was chicken breasts. I detested the whole idea of cleaning a chicken and couldn't handle the blood and gore that came with it. Boneless breasts were comparatively easy to dissect and that was thrown into every curry possible. Now the story is different. I actually cant stand chicken breasts which I think are so tasteless and prefers the thigh fillets any day. But the cleaning bit puts me off even now, although it has tremendously improved :)

So anyway, coming back to mutton. I soon got bored with chicken and beef and so one day I picked up some lamb steaks to experiment with. Used a hard core Indian marinade, grilled it and it was horrible. I mean the smell was really bad and somehow it never clicked for either of us. We both avoided eating lamb altogether...
...until a year back when Ro suddenly realised he didn't mind the lamb you get here. So Ro has been happily eating lamb in restaurants and such, whereas I cringe at the very idea. That also probably explains why this is my first ever mutton recipe on the blog. I still don't know the difference between lamb, goat, mutton and baby lamb. I was under the impression that goat was the closest to mutton we get back in India, but boy was I wrong. Ro convinced me to pick up some 'curry goat' as its called from a butcher and I did thinking it would not be bad. Sadly, it had that same weird smell and such and came loaded with fat, that Ro spent a good half hour removing it off the pieces. So till I figure out a good cut/type of goat meat, this is going to be the only recipe around.

That said, the mutton curry was good, or so Ro said. I refused to touch it, except for the gravy which tasted brilliant (honest opinion). So if the mutton is right, then the curry would be perfect is what I think. I am thinking it would be great with beef as well. Next time I suppose. The recipe has been adapted from the book Flavours of the Spice Coast by Mrs. K M Mathew, the book I picked up from Kottayam, much to Ro's and my mother-in-laws despair (saying it had basic recipes and why spend Rs. 600). I on the other hand love the book. Its got pictures (very imp.) and all the mallu things I don't know to make. I hope I try at least a handful of stuff out of the book to compensate for the money I spent on it :)
Mutton- 1/2 kg, with bone
Onion- 1 cup, finely chopped + enough to garnish
Tomatoes- 3, chopped
Water- 1 cup
Oil- 1 tbsp
Salt- to taste

To grind
Kashmiri chilli powder- 2 1 /2 tsp
Coriander powder- 1/2 tsp
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Fenugreek seeds- a little less than 1/4 tsp
Cumin seeds- 1/4 tsp
Ginger- 1 tsp, grated and sliced
Garlic- 5 cloves, peeled
White vinegar- 2 tsp
Wash and clean the mutton and slice into medium size pieces. 
Grind together all the ingredients under the 'to grind' section and then add the vinegar to make a paste.
Heat oil in a pressure cooker and add the chopped onions. Sauté for a couple of minutes.
Throw in the tomatoes and cook till they become mushy.
Add the ground paste and on low heat cook till the oil starts resurfacing.
At this point add the meat and salt and stir well, making sure the masala coats the mutton well enough.
Pour in the water, bring to a boil and close the lid.
Once you see the steam coming, put the weight on and cook for about 4 whistles or till the meat is cooked well. I guess this depends on the type of meat used.
Open the lid once all the pressure is released and if there is lots of water remaining, bring to a simmer and cook till the gravy thickens.
Garnish with some julienned onions and serve hot with rice, roti or puttu
Notes: I used the pressure cooker because that was just easier. If you dont have one, then cover the vessel and cook till the meat is completely done (checking regularly and adding water if required) and then open the lid and simmer till the gravy thickens.
Replace Kashmiri chilli with the spicy one if you prefer it hot. This is a pretty mild curry otherwise.


Sudha said...

Mutton curry looks really really delicious!I can understand that you've reached a stand after much trials and tribulations,but all I can say is that I could polish off a whole bowl of that all by myself - if you daringly let me,that is;)Lovely dish and awesome clicks to go with that!

Turmericnspice said...

love your classy ...i don't eat meat but love the presentation. love spending time here :)

kavis said...

Pheew..Love the mutton curry and the beautiful click. Your recipe sounds very easy and totally new to me. Can't wait to try. Btw, where can I buy a sack material in here???

Sravs said...

very inviting curry !! looks wonderful !!

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Sarah said...

mmm... that mutton curry looks delicious... will be fabulous for my mutton-loving family... I too don't like the mutton we get abroad... i feel it smells way too much... Else we look out for Indian or Pakistani butcher-shops and specifically ask for Indian mutton... And out here mutton can mean both sheep-meat or goat-meat... i specifically ask for goat-meat.. Else they give us sheep-meat which is the one which smells a lot

Vimitha Anand said...

THe curry looks so spicy and yummy. perfect for rice / rotis.
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Anonymous said...

I love mutton .. in curry, in Biryani!Very recently I discovered the perfect place to buy fresh mutton and I am going tomorrow again to buy some :)

Prathima Rao said...

So well presented Nisha :)
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Prats Corner

schmetterlingwords said...

Unlike you, I love mutton curries very much. We must clean the mutton very well and take off all fat if possible and add lots of masala to wade off the smell. Then it would taste delicious. But just like you, I leave all these cleaning stuff to my husband :)

This curry looks delicious and sure to try sometime :)


I'm a mutton lover (after chicken),...this dish makes me drool nonstop! :)

revathi said...

Fabulous dish.. loved the presentation..:)

TheYummyMorsel said...

Wow! Looks spicy and yummy. Your clicks are mouthwatering. I don't eat mutton, will try it out with chicken.

GB said...

That looks wonderful! I think maybe the key to non-gamey lamb is getting rid of the fat. I find if I steam it in the pressure cooker with about two cups of water (and the spices needed per the recipe) I can skim off the fat and the lamb is juicy enough to add to a curry. Sadly, we don't get goat meat here, so I have to make do with lamb.

(Plus I burn a nice vanilla scented candle in the vicinity/throw open all the windows to get rid of the smell).


Love your serving dish!

Plateful said...

I do have this book by Mrs. K. Mathew. Unfortunately, like most of my cookbooks I haven't tried anything from this. Your pics are tempting, and I loved that tiny pot!

Farah said...

wow! i dint know there was so much to lamb! i thought lamb, mutton all meant the same!....curry looks absolutely lovely...easy too....thats wat counts! :)

Cassia Bark said...

the curry looks amazing....being a mutton loving bong I can give you a couple of tips..
1. ALWAYS buy halal meat and u'll find the smell almost non-existent....I bought lamb at Tesco the first week I was in this country and had to throw the whole batch of curry out....

2. Go liberal on the whole spices and try adding Bengali Garam Masala at the end of a normal curry (unless ofcourse it's a special type of cuisine and asks for something else)

3. Try and cook meat in a slow cooker if possible....that will make the meat extra tender and it will be totally infused with all the spices :)

Hope these help and your next experience with red meat will be a pleasant one! :)

Cassia Bark said...

yeah I always buy my curry meat (chicken/lamb/goat/sheep) from Halal shops...I buy pork and beef from supermarkets as they don't have any smell as such. Back in Kolkata I remember the elders used to call the well fed middle aged Goats ''good meat'' and also the baby ones as they are very tender. Here u don't get too many options when it comes to goats...ask for mixed portions of ribs, legs and shoulders. :)

vineetha said...

same story to tell..used to love the mutton which we get back home but here I hate the lamb meat and the smell itself is so disgusting for me....but friends have been telling me that deshi butchers give slightly better tasting one ,never tried that till now :)

divya said...

looks super yummy & inviting..;)

the Junkie book said...

am totally a mutton fan! happy V day! love and mush mush all the way!

Suchi said...

Hi Nisha, am new to your blog. Love the mutton curry, it looks fab!

Ananda Rajashekar said...

Now i seriously want to do research on goat, mutton and lamb, same with me i haven't come out of strong flavor phobia...but as you say curry looks AMAZING! i would love taste just the gravy. btw once my friend made rogan josh somehow i was fine with it, involves a lot of spices.

Rajesh Kumar said...

Good recipe with nice presentation.Delicious and wonderful looking very nice and yummy..
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