Freedom of speech and expression!
Emblazoned on every media platform, this phrase has taken the world by storm and endless heated debates post the Paris massacre.
What does freedom of speech mean to you?
To me, it means more than literary freedom; it means more than putting my pen to paper and writing whatever crap enters my head. And believe me; writers can have a lot of ‘creative’ crap in their heads.
To me, freedom of speech and expression means to be responsible and harmonious in what I write. It does not mean mocking another religion, another faith, another culture or lifestyle, another person. It means to use words and actions to add to the harmony and balance of nature, to evoke compassion, hope and love.
It does not mean to ridicule.
And as much as I condone the actions of the two twisted, lonely, dark souls who have robbed the world of its depleting innocence and let fear once again control our lives, I also condone freedom of speech which hurts another’s sentiments.
And I know I have opened a whole can of worms here….
So, let me get back silently to today’s dish at hand…..dahiwala gosht or lamb simmered with spices in a smoky yoghurt curry.
Now there are plenty of yoghurt based lamb recipes but what makes this one different is that it uses the age-old Indian smoking technique for incorporating flavour into the curry.
In this gosht/lamb curry, the signature flavour introduced while smoking is that of kewra essence. The kewra essence is derived from the Pandanus flowers and is easily available at most Indian/Asian grocers. It lends an almost floral aroma and flavour to the dish and hence kewra essence is used extensively in North Indian especially Mughlai cuisine to flavour meats, rice dishes and desserts.
Dahiwala gosht has a rich and aromatic flavour; a curry which has multiple layers of flavour and is best mopped up with breads. Being an Indian dish, it is always suggested to have this lamb curry with Indian flat breads but I would recommend any bread for this. I had this curry with freshly baked Lebanese pita bread which was perfect to mop up the gravy.
I would also recommend adding a salad of sorts to accompany this meal to cut through the richness of the curry.
Dahiwala gosht or lamb simmered with spices and cooked in a smoky yoghurt curry – a deep, dark, rich lamb curry packed with flavours from the spices, aromatics, yoghurt and kewra essence.
This amazing lamb recipe was inspired from here.
1. 1 kg lamb; on the bone, cut into medium-sized pieces
2. 3 tbsp vegetable oil
3. 6 Cloves
4. 8 Black peppercorns
5. 1 inch Cinnamon bark
6. 2 Black cardamom
7. 6 Dry red chillies
8. 4 Spanish onions, sliced finely
9. 1 inch Ginger, pounded well
10. 6 Garlic cloves, pounded well
11. 1.5 cup thick plain yoghurt/curd
12. 3 tsp Coriander powder
13. ½ tsp Turmeric powder
14. 1 red chilli
15. 1 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder
16. ½ tsp Garam masala powder
17. Salt, to season
18. A piece of coal
19. 3-4 drops Kewra essence
20. 1 tsp Ghee/clarified butter
21. Fresh coriander leaves; chopped, for garnish
1. Mix the yoghurt with coriander powder, turmeric powder, red chilli powder and garam masala powder; keep aside.
2. In a deep pan, heat oil and add the whole spices; cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon, cardamom and dry red chillies.
3. Fry for about 30 seconds on low heat and then add the onions; Saute on medium heat till soft and translucent.
4. Add the ginger and garlic and continue to sauté till browned.
5. Add the lamb pieces and cook on high heat for 3-4 minutes.
6. Next add the yoghurt mixture, season with salt and mix well to combine.
7. On low heat, simmer till the lamb is cooked well and succulent.
8. Once the lamb is done, remove from heat and open the lid and place an aluminium foil on top.
9. Heat the coal piece till red hot and place on the foil.
10. Pour the kewra essence and ghee on top of the burning coal and cover the dish with a lid.
11. Allow the smoke to penetrate the curry for at least 10 minutes.
12. Remove the foil carefully and mix the lamb curry through.
13. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and serve hot with bread of choice.