Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Easy Muttar Keema (Peas & Lamb)


1 lb ground lamb
1 packaged fresh shelled peas or about 1.5 C frozen
1 12 oz can Hunt's tomato sauce, plus one can's measurement of water
1 whole onion, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
2 T garlic ginger paste
1 tsp Cumin seed whole
1 tsp Garam masala, ground
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 tsp Coriander ground
1/2 tsp black pepper ground
1/2 tsp Smoked chipotle 
1 big pinch dried methi leaves
1/8th tsp ground Bay leaf (or 1 small whole one)
3 T plain yogurt
1-1/2 tsp salt

1. Render out ground lamb in a dry nonstick skillet. Remove lamb and drain off all but a teaspoon or two of the fat.

2. Into the hot fat, put the cumin seed and minced jalapeno. Cook a minute or two until seeds start to turn golden. Toss in the onion. Cook that for about 2-3 minutes. Add in the ginger garlic paste. Keep stirring until everything starts to look golden and smells fragrant. 

3. Toss in all the spices and cook a minute or two, then put the lamb back into the mix. Add the tomato sauce and water. Bring up to a boil. Sprinkle the methi leaves into the boiling curry. Add the peas. Cover, but vent so steam can escape. Stir well and put on medium heat for about 20 minutes. (I took a shower while this cooked).

4. Give a good stir. Is it still watery or is it starting to look thick like a good stew or chili? This is not soupy or with a loose gravy. This will ultimately cook down to its essential parts, lamb and peas. The gravy such as it is, will be just enough to make everything cohesive, but not enough to look like a soup or a stew. The end product will be eaten with naan or roti.

5. Turn off heat and add in the yogurt. Give a good stir to incorporate.  Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves if you have it.

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