I’m not sure what has happened to the weather here in Paris, but it’s certainly not the lovely summer weather that I was expecting. I guess we were spoilt last summer and so I just expected more of the same thing this year. Oh well, the upside is that I am doing a lot more actual cooking than I did this time last year (our apartment was already a furnace without me adding to it with more heat!)
I was at my favourite butcher and saw some lamb pieces that looked good. I had great ideas of doing some sort of mediterranean inspired casserole but once I started looking I couldn’t find that many recipes of interest.
While searching I did read somewhere that apparently lamb is not a great partner of tomato sauce…or at least, it can be easy to make something that doesn’t taste great rather than making something that tastes spectacular. After reading that, I ventured off into the world of curries.
One of my favourite cookbook authors is Bill Granger. I have 3 of his books, and each time I cook something it turns out perfectly, leading me to exclaim “I’m making this one again” (and invariably I do!) This recipe is from Bill’s Basics…a book recommended to me by my sister. As you’ll see from below, while it looks like a lot of ingredients, the actual work involved is minimal and I bet that most of the ingredients are already in your cupboard (well, that is if you like to experiment with indian spiced food).
1 kg lamb leg, cut into 5cm cubes (I bought pre-cut pieces from my butcher)
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp dried chilli flakes
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cardamom pods, crushed
3 cinnamon sticks
1 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp olive oil
2 large onions, chopped
400g tin chopped tomatoes
250g (1 cup) yoghurt
Juice of 1 lime
2 tsp sugar
- In a large bowl, put the lamb and add the spices and ginger. Toss well, and season with sea salt.
- Place a large heavy-based pan over medium-high heat. Heat the oil and butter and gently cook the onion for 10 minutes until soft. Add the lamb, making sure to throw in any remaining spices from the bowl, and cook for 5 minutes until browned. You may want to do this in batches, to ensure you get a good colour on the lamb (this is where you are going to get the real depth of flavour).
- Add the tomatoes, yoghurt and 1 cup of water and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down to low, cover the pan and simmer for 2 hours.
- Stir in the lime juice and sugar. I served mine with some simple steamed green beans and rice, along with some of my homemade chutney.