Authentic Lamb Rogan Josh
My love for the flavour of lamb rogan josh started when I first moved to the UK and used to order it often when I went out for a curry.
It wasn’t until a few years ago, however that I learned that the traditional Indian way of making the recipe is quite a lot different to what you find in most curry houses in the UK.
This is a recipe for authentic lamb rogan josh that was taught to me by a Twitter friend from the Punjab area of India. Lamb rogan josh is believed to have originated near there in India’s Kashmir region.
Rogan Josh is famous for its dark red colour. Here in the UK this is accomplished by using a mix of paprika and red chilli powder but in Kashmir the red colouring comes from a difficult to find herb called cockscomb. Well that and a lot of red chilli powder too.
The red colour achieved using cockscomb is a very deep red. I often throw in a tablespoon or two of beetroot powder which can be found at Indian markets to achieve a more authentic colouring. The beetroot powder will not change the flavour of the curry but will give it a very deep red colour.
Why not also give my other lamb curries a go:
- 2 tablespoons ghee, clarified butter or vegetable oil
- Fresh curry leaves (if you can find them) or frozen.
- 6 whole cloves
- 8 black or 16 green cardamon pods
- 10m whole black pepper corns
- 1 two inch long cinnamon stick
- 1 Piece mace
- 2 large onions
- 14 cloves of garlic smashed and finely chopped
- 1 two nice piece of ginger - finely chopped
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 Kilo (2 pounds) shoulder of lamb cut into 1 inch size pieces
- 1 tablespoon roasted and ground cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon roasted and ground coriander seeds
- 2 tablespoons good quality paprika
- 1 tablespoon chilli powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- garam masala
- 5 tablespoons plain yogurt
- Lime wedges
- Fresh chopped coriander
- Melt the ghee or oil in a large sauce pan and add the curry leaves. When they begin to give off their wonderful scent, add all of the whole spices (cloves, peppercorns, mace, cinnamon stick, and cardamon pods. Fry for about 30 seconds and very fragrant.
- Add the onions and fry until by slightly browned and then throw in the garlic and ginger.
- Cook until softened and then remove from the pan and set aside.
- Now add the meat. You may need to cook the meat in batches. Ensure that you fry the meat and not just simmer it in the meat juices.
- Once the meat is all cooked through, add the other cooked ingredients up to the chilli powered and then cover with water.
- Cook over medium heat until the meat is tender - about one to one and a half hours.
- Salt, pepper and garam masala to taste. I add about a teaspoon of garam masala.
- Stir in the yogurt one tablespoon at a time stirring constantly to ensure the yogurt becomes smooth and not lumpy.
- Serves with white rice, lime wedges and coriander.