I was given a slow cooker curry recipe book for Christmas. But having decided to try one this week, I was disappointed to see they practically all call for either curry powder or curry paste. Now don't get me wrong, I have both in the house, but I had hoped for a few more 'genuine' recipes with a range of spices rather than a homogenous ready mix.
So instead I have taken my The Essential Madhur Jaffrey off the bookshelf and adapted her Kheema (Minced Meat) recipe to the cheap scrag end of lamb I bought.
8 scrag end chops (about 800g)
4 cloves of garlic
1 thumb sized piece of ginger
4tbsp vegetable oil
1 cinnamon stick about 5cm long or 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
4 whole cloves
4 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp hot chilli flakes
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1 tin tomatoes
salt to taste
1 tsp lemon juice (optional)
Roughly chop the onion, garlic, and ginger (don't worry about peeling it) and puree with a little water to make a smooth paste. Leave to one side.
Brown the lamb in a frying pan with oil a few at a time. Place the browned lamb in the slow cooker. Add the whole spices to the frying pan and stir around for a few minutes, then add the onion paste and fry for about 10 minutes or until the paste starts to stick in the pan. Liquidise the tomatoes in the same liquidiser/blender that you have just taken the onion paste out of and pour into the frying onion paste. Add the rest of the spices, and rinse out the tomato can and the liquidiser with half a can of water.
When the onion paste & tomatoes start to bubble remove from the heat and pour over the lamb, trying to ensure all the lamb is covered. Don't worry if you can't poke all the lamb under the sauce as it will still cook poking out and you can always rearrange the chops later in the cooking when the meat has shrunk back a bit on the bone. And the sauce will also seem a bit thick but it will loosen up with the meat juices by the end of the cooking time.
Cook on high for 6 hours or low for all day cooking.
Serve with boiled basmati cooked with a handful of frozen peas and a teaspoon of cumin seeds if you have them.