Khan Lamb

Serves: 8

Nat and I recently stayed in Ranthambore in India for two nights; part of Rajasthan, a state in the North.

Ranthambore is a massive area of jungle, famous for its tigers, something we were lucky enough to see.

The property we stayed at was incredible and at night, we sat around a huge fire being fed the most amazing food from the tandoor whilst sipping on G&Ts. They never did give me the recipe for their stuffed potatoes, though my word, we would travel back just for those alone.

One of the staff was particularly passionate about food and he shared a YouTube clip with me of a lamb leg, marinated, buried with coals and cooked for hours.

Wrapped in roti, banana leaf, foil and a wet cloth, when revealed, the lamb was eaten with the soaked roti; a dish I just had to cook with a little assistance from Nat.

So last night, NYE 2022, we catered Nat’s family an Indian feast.

And this lamb was the second dish. Absolutely classic Rajasthan cooking.

I cooked it medium rare. Wrapped in roti, a banana leaf, foil and then a wet cloth, placed in a cast iron pot and cooked in a BBQ over indirect heat until the centre reached 55c.

It was remarkable. Just remarkable.

Here is my translation of the video.

Ingredients

Leg of lamb
18 garlic, crushed (or 4 – 6 tbsp garlic paste)
4 tbsp Garam Masala
1 tbsp chilli powder
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp ground turmeric
1 tsp salt
1 c softened ghee
12 Indian roti
1 banana leaf

Method

  1. Score the lamb leg all over, about two centimetres deep. Rub the garlic and Garam Masala all over and into the scores. Wrap in foil and refrigerate for a few hours or over night.
  2. Mix the softened (though not melted) ghee with the chilli powder, ground coriander, ground turmeric and salt.
  3. Lay several sheets of foil. On top, place enough banana leaf to wrap the lamb. On top, lay enough roti to wrap the lamb.
  4. Cover the lamb in the combined ghee and then tightly wrap, starting with the roti, then the banana leaf and then the foil. Wet a cloth and wrap the parcel.
  5. Heat a BBQ (or oven) to 160c. Place the lamb parcel in a heavy, cast iron pot with a lid. Cook, over an indirect heat, until the centre of the lamb reaches 55c.
  6. Set aside for 20 minutes. Remove the cloth, foil and banana leaf and serve the slice lamb with the soaked roti.

Dan Toombs’ Pakistani Dry Meat Curry

Serves: 4

This is an incredible curry. Hall of fame sort of stuff.

It’s from Dan Toombs’ latest book – The Curry Guy Bible – recommended to me by my mate Rich and what a great book.

There is literally nothing I don’t want to try and based on this dry meat curry cooked by Nat, I am going to cook it all.

I’ve typed up a few dry curries and they are my favourite. Cooking the sauce down until you really don’t have sauce at all.

For many, I appreciate that this defeats the purpose of a curry, though just trust me.

With this particular curry, once the meat is tender and at the point of starting to breakdown, together with the spices, the fried onions and the reduced marinade, my word. Read through the method and get excited.

Add then add this dry meat curry to your cooking shortlist and prepare to be blown away.

Ingredients

900gm lamb leg meat, cut into bite sized pieces
3/4 c ghee (we used 2 tbsp to be healthy)
3 medium onions, thinly sliced
2 tbsp garam masala
2 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder*
1 tbsp fenugreek leaves**
Salt, to taste
4 tbsp chopped coriander to garnish
3 limes, quartered, to serve

For the marinade

1/4 c white vinegar
1/2 c Greek yoghurt
1 1/2 tsp (chickpea) flour
2 tbsp garlic and ginger paste***
8 (green) bird’s eye chillies, blended to a paste with a drop of water
2 tbsp mustard oil****

Method

  1. Whisk all the marinade ingredients together in a large mixing bowl until creamy smooth. Add the meat and mix well with your hands to ensure it is nicely coated and marinate for 3 hours or overnight – the longer the better.
  2. When ready to start cooking, bring 1 litre of water to the boil and add the lamb chunks with all the marinade and stir well. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 1 hour until the lamb is tender. You want to be left with a cup of cooking stock at the end of the step. Tip the cooked meat and remaining liquid into a bowl.
  3. Now, using the same pan, melt the ghee over a high heat and add the onions. Fry for about 15 minutes or until the onions are a deep brown. Using a slotted spoon, transfer half the onions to a separate bowl.
  4. Reduce the meat to medium high and stir in the garam masala and chilli powder and return the set aside onions to the pan. Now add the meat and remaining broth to the pan and cook until the broth has almost evaporated. Turn up the heat to high and flash fry the meat until it is crispy and the ghee is starting to separate from the other ingredients.
  5. Add the fenugreek leaves by rubbing the leaves between your fingers into the pan and season with salt. When you are testing the meat for seasoning, it is very easy to continue snacking, so try not to do that too much! Garnish with coriander and serve with lime wedges.

* Much more subtle than chilli powder so hunt it out.
** Order from Herbies.
*** Blend equal parts garlic and chilli with a little water.
**** Worth the investment.