Apparently we are now in spring. Foodwise this normally means that we begin to head away from proper winter comfort food and start cooking and eating lighter, more seasonal meals. We all have our favourite spring time meals. Ones that we associate with the longer evenings and the blooming of flowers, but as I look outside today I see absolutely no indication of this season change whatsoever. If anything it feels like we are reverting back to autumn. With grey skies, rain and naked trees it just seems wrong for me to start making a spring roast chicken or a pasta primavera. Instead, like the weather, I too have decided to stay in the past by continuing to cook warming comfort food until the weather decides to cooperate.
Although I hate this horrible drizzly weather, there is something beautiful about being all nice and cozy at home with a large bowl of steaming hot curry. So, instead of feeling frustrated that spring has not yet arrived, lets feel grateful that it’s still acceptable to remain in our pyjamas all day and eat stupid amounts of food. Well, that’s what I’ll be doing until I see a glimpse of sunshine anyway.
Curry is one of my favourite things to eat in the colder months. When its grim and wet outside there’s nothing that can lift your spirits like a good curry can! Although lamb rogan josh isn’t usually my curry of choice when I go out for an Indian meal, it is definitely one of my favourites to cook at home. I use lamb shoulder for this one, and after marinating it in yoghurt overnight and then simmering it for a couple of hours it completely melts in your mouth. It really is the perfect meal to brighten up a not so spring-like day.
800g lamb shoulder, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and grated
5 garlic cloves, peeled and grated
5 tablespoons natural yoghurt
10 black peppercorns
6 whole cardamom pods
4 whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 onion, peeled and thinly sliced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons garam masala
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
2 dried chillis, finely chopped
400g chopped tomatoes
300ml of water, swirl in empty tomato tin
A handful of freshly chopped coriander
Serve with steaming hot basmati rice.
- Using a large bowl marinate the lamb in the yoghurt, ginger and garlic. Mix well and cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge overnight.
- Once the lamb is well marinated heat around a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large saucepan over a medium to high heat. Add in the peppercorns, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, cloves and coriander seeds and fry for a few minutes until they begin to toast slightly and let off an aroma.
- Add in the sliced onion and fry for 10 minutes making sure not to burn. Once your onion is beginning to soften add in the lamb and all its marinade into the pan and fry until well browned all over.
- Add in your cumin, garam masala, fennel seeds and dried chilli and fry off for a couple of minutes before pouring in the chopped tomatoes and water. Season with salt, mix well and bring to a boil.
- Turn down to a simmer and cover for 2 hours stirring once of twice during the cooking time.
- After 2 hours your lamb chunks should be super tender and ready to eat. Throw a handful of freshly chopped coriander on top of the curry and serve with steaming hot basmati rice.