Posted 29th April 2008
I’ve had a few strange working lunches in my time. The first question set the tone for this one: “Have you thought much about what would happen when you die?”
In my experience, Indians don’t talk about death much. I’m quite happy to follow this fine example.
But now, I was sitting across a rather morbid will-writing consultant (or something). In between bites of my stone-baked, Capricciosa pizza I was being force fed likely future events.
“Do you have any possessions of real value you want to present to anyone?”
Gulp. My pots and pans?
We finally settled on the only piece of pricey jewellery I possess. With that, I ran off to work leaving the husband to answer the last call.
To think I’d even momentarily considered parting with my pots and pans! I put them to use straightaway with Bhuna Gosht, and served it with my new found recipe for perfect naan – an Earthly reminder why life is worth living.
750 gm lamb shoulder, diced and bones included
2 medium onions, sliced fine
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp chilli powder
Half tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp garam masala
4 fat cloves garlic, minced or pureed
1 inch ginger, minced or pureed
4 tbsp vegetable oil
Salt to taste
In a large pot, heat the oil over a high flame. When it starts sizzling, throw in the onions and fry for five minutes until they turn soft and pale golden in colour.
Now add in the ginger and garlic and fry for about two minutes until they turn a golden colour too.
Then mix in the lamb and all the spices, apart from the garam masala. Mix the ingredients well together until the meat is sealed and brown all over.
Now add in just enough water to come half way up the sides of the meat, cover and cook on a medium flame. You need to keep stirring from time to time and add hot water only when the curry in the pot dries up.
This is what bhuna means – to stir until the masalas caramelise and the meat cooks. This whole process will take 45 minutes to an hour depending on the quality of the lamb.
When the curry is thick and dry, and the lambs falls apart easily when cut with a fork, mix in the coriander, garam masala, salt and serve.