Mutton Curry Sunshine

Mutton curry in Indian meals call for long and heavy lunches or dinners and an additional delight if on weekends. There are so many variations of mutton curry and each require a good amount of spice mixes. I must confess, despite my best tries, I have not been able make mutton with less than 5 spices despite my best research. The eat is just so hard and red that the flavors required need to match up strongly enough. Needless to say, it’s not just time-consuming, it’s amazingly rewarding too. 

Legacy of mutton curry hence is a nostalgic Sunday morning with hours of preparation for the lunch feast and sumptuous left overs for dinner. A wholesome family feast for sure. This I named sunshine not just because it came out so bright 🙂  but also because it reminds me of afternoon luncheons of my childhood. After seafood, my palate surrenders to mutton unquestionably. Read on and enjoy cooking the same for a great family treat for yourself too !!

….need to know (food details)

  • Number of people served : 4 famished gobbling souls 😀
  • Preparation time : 90 minutes
  • Serving size : Bowls full for each

….and we need (ingredients)

  • Mutton, cut pieces, 500 grams : Healthiest curry is prepared with mutton. It builds bones and is abundant in calcium.
  • Onions chopped, 1 + 2 : Strong, acidic and bitter. That’s what a good red onion is supposed to be. They are also good sources of Vitamin C and Iron and are good for hair, skin and help in weight-loss.
  • Coriander (chopped or powder), 2 tablespoon : Coriander provides the garnish to the dish and takes off any unwanted smell. Coriander is also a great digestive and also aids in the digestive and blood system of our body. The sweet coriander is one of the most popular garnish across fat cooked dishes. I pluck the whole plant from my garden since roots give the best flavor in the coriander plant.
  • Fennel seeds, 1 & 1/2 teaspoon : Fennel is amazingly sweet perfumed and tastes so much like licorice that it is a widely used breath freshener in India. Fennel has amazing benefits like maintaining bone & skin health and aiding digestion.
  • Ginger, 1 inch piece : Unmistakably earthy, the ginger adds the heat quotient in the dish. The gingerol in ginger is a strong anti nausea and anti inflammatory agent
  • Garlic, 6 cloves : Pungency is the reason why we use this allicin rich clove which combats sickness and common cold.
  • Green chilies, 3 to 4 : Great for eyes and skin, green chilies are the healthiest ones to bring in the bitter zing in any dish. I used them here, freshly plucked from my garden to bring in their essence. I deseeded them well to ensure it being kids friendly.
  • Cinnamon, 1 inch stick : Again an amazing sweet taste and flavor enhancer, cinnamon is also an anti oxidant, anti inflammatory and sugar controlling ingredient which I often use in meats.
  • Heeng (asafoetida), 1 pinch : Heeng has a pungent garlicky fragrance and gets breathing and blood sugar in control. 
  • Ghee (saturated fats), 3 tablespoon : Unlike popular belief, ghee actually helps in weight loss. It is also a great soluble of most vegetables and strengthens bones doing so. We use ghee here for cooking for its great buttery essence.
  • Garam Masala, 1 teaspoon : The ever popular Indian concoction of spices helps in weight loss, pain fight, immunity boost etc. True to its name, it’s hot and powerful. Imagine being the blend of around 10 powerful spice essence.
  • Bay leaves, 2 : Bay leaf is great for joints and skin and are packed with Vitamin A & C and many other minerals like iron, potassium and manganese. They are pungent and bitter in taste. I grow bay leaves in my garden so I can tell you that the fresh ones and dried ones are quite different. Use the dried ones only please. Bay leaves can grow into small trees giving lifetime supply 🙂
  • Turmeric powder, 1/2 teaspoon : Turmeric gives a great orange color and a mild bitter taste to the pickle here. It is a wonderful antioxidant and anti inflammatory. I grow them in tubs in my backyard. They test your patience coming up, but they are amazingly pretty as a plant.
  • Yogurt (or hung curd) : 2 tablespoon : Digestion, skin, hair, everything benefits from curd. In sizzling summers, it keeps the internals in control. Curd is our basic curry component here.
  • Salt, to taste : You can try Himalayan pink salt. It is full of minerals and amazingly earthy.

….time to cook ‘n roll (preparing instructions)

  • Using a  mortar & pestle (using traditional helps enhance the nostalgic highlights of the chapter 🙂 ) grind a coarse paste of 1 onion, coriander, fennel (you may dry roast this for 2 minutes to make fennel grinding easier), ginger garlic, green chilies (chop fine prior to it) and cinnamon .
  • Mix this coarse paste with curd and whip well.
  • Now puncture the meat pieces well using a fork. This would allow for the spices to penetrate well and the meat to cook better.
  • Apply the marinate paste to the meat (rather dip it well) and keep covered in the refrigerator for 30 minutes at least).
  • Take a pressure cooker meanwhile and put it on medium flame. As it heats, add the ghee to it and allow it to melt well.
  • Add a pinch of heeng and mix well.
  • Add the remaining chopped onion to the pressure cooker and saute’ well till they turn golden brown in color. Should take around 3 to 4 minutes.
  • While this happens, add the mutton pieces to this. Keep stirring to mix well and cook for 7 minutes.
  • To this add garam masala and cook further for 5 minutes. With time you will start smelling the fragrance of you dish floating throughout the house 🙂
  • Now put 6 cups of water in the cooker and mix well with the cooking meat.
  • Sprinkle the coriander in it and shut the lid of the cooker. Turn the gas knob to full heat and allow cooking for 10 minutes.
  • Now lower the flame to low and cook further for 40 minutes.
  • Switch the gas flame off now and allow the pressure in the cooker to work magic on your dish further.
  • By now, your house would have invited greedy hearts from the neighborhood as well 🙂
  • Open the cooker and check the texture of the mutton. The meat should be easily separating from the bones. That’s when you know that it is well done !

Storage : This can store for a week in your fridge. This would allow you to relish a long and time-consuming recipe to be enjoyed many times.

Missing Something ? : You may crush some black cardamom and cloves to enhance the flavor a bit more. If you are a bit creative then try to add galangal instead of ginger, just remember to grind it well since it’s harder and more fibrous than ginger.

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