Mutton Kola Urundai was my father’s favourite order at military hotels. That’s what non-vegetarian hotels now called “Chettinad hotels” were called back then. In military hotels, there was no menu card. The waiter would bring in a tray with the actual dishes, diners would choose what they’d like to have and the waiter would go back, re-heat the chosen dishes and serve them. This is how it happens still in small towns outside Chennai. No frills, no pretence. What you see is what you get. I tried to re-create these military hotel specialties at home and it was a breeze really. You really can’t go wrong with this recipe, just don’t skip any of the ingredients. Gather together all the ingredients, grind, mix and deep fry. It’s that simple but the results are impressive.
These fried meat balls are succulent and perfectly flavoured. The coconut and fried gram add body and texture to the urundai and the masala is just the right blend of heat, spice and aroma. Together they create a beautiful symphony that is Mutton Kola Urundai.
Mutton Kola Urundai
Pichi paaru Rendaai
Urundai ku podadhe Sandai
Car vikaraange Hyundai
Ayayo aaghi pochu semma Vambai!
Mutton – ½ kilo minced
Red chilli powder – 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
Egg – 1
Salt to taste
Oil – 1 tbsp
Oil for deep frying
Onion – 1 medium chopped roughly
Green chillies – 4 chopped roughly
Whole dry Red chillies – 4 stalks removed
Coconut – 3-4 tbsp grated
Roasted gram/Pottu kadalai – 2 tbsp
Ginger – 2 inch piece peeled and chopped
Garlic – 6-7 cloves
Cardamom – 2
Cinnamon – 1 inch piece
Fennel seeds/Sombu/Saunf – 1 tbsp
1. Rinse the minced meat in 2 changes of water. Squeeze out all the water completely and set aside.
2. In a kadai/skillet, heat 1 tbsp oil. When hot add the minced meat and sauté. Let the meat cook on medium low for about 7-10 minutes. By this time the meat would start to pale and would be cooked through. Remove from fire. Let cool.
3. Grind the fried and cooled mutton to a smooth paste. Set aside.
4. Grind together all the ingredients called for under masala to a coarse paste adding as little water as possible.
5. Mix the ground meat and ground masala together in a medium ball making sure that the two are well blended. Add red chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt. Mix well. Break an egg into the bowl and again mix well.
6. Make small lemon sized balls from the meat mixture and deep fry in oil in batches till golden brown. Remove onto absorbent paper. Serve hot.