Lamb with Fruits and Nuts|
Braised Lamb with Fruits and Nuts
This Indian dish is anything but understated. It piles flavour upon
flavour to stunning effect and would overwhelm milk-fed lamb.
Amazingly, for something so sumptuous, it is comparatively
nutritionally sound, as it has been modified to eliminate most
saturated fat. However it is not for the meal-in-a-moment cook.
Cover 45 g of raisins and 30 g sultanas in boiling water. Leave to
soak. Trim an 800 g boneless piece of young lamb (leg or shoulder) of
all visible fat. Put the piece in a large saucepan and add 3 cups of
water, a tablespoon of lemon juice and 2 bay leaves. Cover, bring to
the boil, skim, and simmer very gently for about one hour or until a
skewer glides into the meat with ease. Remove the meat, setting it
aside, and reduce the stock over high heat to about 1/4 of a cup.
Reserve the stock and wash the saucepan.
Into a processor bowl put 2 large onions quartered, 6 cloves of
garlic, 5 cm ginger roughly chopped, 1/2 tablespoon ground cardamom,
2 tablespoons ground coriander, 1 teaspoon ground cloves, 1
tablespoon white poppy seeds, 45 g ground almonds and 1 teaspoon
black pepper. Process to a paste. Chop finely a generous handful of
fresh mint and have ready 200 g plain yoghurt (low fat yoghurt can be
Heat 2 tablespoons mono- or polyun- saturated oil in the saucepan, add
onion and spice paste and fry, stirring, for about 3 minutes or until
it is fragrant. Add the mint and yoghurt and simmer gently till the
sauce is thick and creamy. Return the meat to the saucepan, spooning
the sauce over it, cover and braise gently until the meat is heated
through. Add the reserved stock to the saucepan and stir through.
Continue to simmer uncovered until the stock is completely reduced.
Sprinkle over the meat and sauce 2 teaspoons garam masala, 1 teaspoon
chilli powder and salt to taste if you regard it as necessary.
In a frying pan, heat a little oil and gently fry the drained
sultanas and raisins, together with 45 g blanched slivered almonds,
for about 5 minutes. Add them to the saucepan and stir. Infuse a few
strands of saffron in a tablespoon of boiling water and add 1 1/2
teaspoons of rosewater. Stir this mixture into the saucepan and heat
for a minute or so more.
Slice the meat, which by now should be meltingly tender, and arrange
on a serving dish. Spoon the sauce over the meat. Serve with rice.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.
From "Raw Materials" by Meryl Constance, The Syndey Morning Herald,
10/6/92. Courtesy Mark Herron.
Posted by Stephen Ceideberg; October 30 1992.