Monday, May 7, 2012

Lamb rogan josh

I've cooked various versions of this dish over the years, but have never committed any to my blog. This is based on the version in Food of the Grand Trunk Road. I have replaced the yogurt in the original recipe with whipped cream, just because that was what I had in the fridge.

1kg of boneless lamb chunks
4 tbsps vegetable oil
4 green cardamom pods
4 cloves
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
2 onions, finely chopped
1 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
1 tin of tomatoes
500 ml water
1 tsp salt
100g whipped cream


  1. Put the oil in a saucepan, together with the cardamom, cloves, bay leaves and cinnamon, and heat gently for a couple of minutes.
  2. Add the onions, and fry for a few minutes until they begin to brown, then add the ginger and garlic and fry for another 30 seconds or so.
  3. Add the ground spices, fry for 30 seconds, then add the meat and brown all over.
  4. Add the tomatoes, water and salt, bring to a boil, cover and simmer on a very low heat for 2 hours, until the lamb is tender.
  5. Add the whipped cream, mix through and cook for another 10 minutes or so.
And he played upon a ladle ...
I was in a cafe today with my kids and Carmela opened up a little sachet of demerara sugar. I had to make a big effort not to start singing "Here we sit like birds in the wilderness, down in Demerara". It left me wondering whether kids at school today even sing these songs. (Mine are home educated, so I can't ask them.)

Another song from my primary school repertoire was Aiken Drum - "And he played upon a ladle, and his name was Aiken Drum". (This is a Scottish one, I think.) And that reminded me of a funny article I once read by an Indian recounting how he had become obsessed with British food. What most worried his parents was the fact that none of the dishes could be served up with a ladle.