Monday, 21 January 2013

Lamb Dhansak or Lamb, Lentil, & Butternut Squash Curry

Last Friday was supposed to be my first Curry Night of 2013, selling a choice of two chilled curries at my local school at afternoon pick-up. But the snow put pay to that.

I did, however, work on a recipe during the week that I was quite pleased with. So I will post it so I can find it next time!

Serves 4-6 (generous)
630 Calories per serving (excluding rice)

450g diced lamb
450g butternut squash
100g red lentils
1 400g tin tomatoes
1 large onion
1 tbsp coriander seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric
6 black peppercorns
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
4 green cardamons, seeds only
4 cloves of garlic
2.5cm root ginger
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 tsp hot chilli flakes
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp salt
Handful of chopped fresh coriander or 2 tbsp dried mint

Peel and cut the butternut squash to the same size as the diced lamb.  Peel and roughly chop the onion.  Put the onion, butternut squash, lentils and tomatoes into a saucepan and cover with water.  Bring to the boil, add the turmeric, cover with a lid and simmer for 25 minutes until the vegetables are quite soft.

Whilst the vegetables are simmering, finely chop the garlic and ginger.  In a dry frying pan, dry roast the coriander, cumin, peppercorns, and fenugreek seeds for a couple of minutes until the spices smell quite hot.  Grind or pound the spices together with the cardamon seeds into a powdered spice mix.

In a heavy bottomed pan, heat the sunflower oil and fry the garlic and ginger over a medium high heat until they just start to brown.  Add the ground spices and stir round for a minute or so then add the diced lamb.  Fry the lamb until just browned.

Whilst the lamb is browning roughly mash or puree the vegetables and lentils and stir in the lemon juice, chilli flakes, and salt.  When the lamb is browned stir in the mashed/pureed vegetables and the coriander or mint.  Simmer with the lid on for another 20 minutes until the meat is tender.  Stir from time to time to prevent the curry sticking on the bottom of the pan, and add a little water if it does.

The flavour of curries develop the longer they are left.  I try to make curries mid afternoon and leave them standing on the hob for an hour or so to mature.  Reheat gently, particulary if using fresh coriander.

At home we serve this with basmati rice which has been cooked with a large pinch of cumin seeds and a handful of frozen peas.

1 comment:

  1. Cooking this in a different order tonight to save a bit of time and hopefully add flavour. Fried onions, garlic, ginger, spices together. Then added the lamb, then the rest of the ingredients and simmered for 25 minutes.