I did not start out to make this kuzhambu. I started out to make the traditional Kari Kuzhambu (without coconut) and then meandered to this kuzhambu because of some indiscriminate salting. Some unasked Kitchen Advice: Always add salt in one go. Whenever you do it in phases, you overdo it. I certainly overdo it. In trying to correct the kuzhambu I made some additions and stumbled on this kuzhambu. However, this is a nice, thick, full bodied mutton kuzhambu that will make a great side dish with Kal Dosai or Idli or Chappathi or even rice.
The most important thing in a Kari Kuzhambu is obviously the Kari (mutton), so make sure it is tender and fresh. The reddish ones are no good I’ve been told. Fresh tender mutton is pinkish. Start with good tender mutton and you’ll end up with succulent, flavourful mutton kuzhambu.
Prep time: 12 mins Cooking time: 30 mins Serves: 4
Mutton – ½ kilo Onions – 2 large chopped fine Tomatoes – 2 large chopped Ginger – 1 inch piece scraped (optional) Green chillies – 3 slit lengthwise Garlic – 8 cloves peeled Shallots/Sambar onions – 5 peeled Red chilli powder – 2 heaped tbsp Turmeric powder – 1 tsp Salt to taste Cinnamon – 1 inch piece Cloves – 2 Oil – 2 tbsp Water – 2 cups (Adjust)
Grated Coconut – ½ cup Whole Black Peppercorns – 1 tsp
1.Wash and clean mutton well. Grind the ginger, garlic and shallots together to a paste. Set aside. Grind together the coconut and whole black peppercorns adding a little water to a smooth paste. Set aside.
2.Take the mutton in a pressure cooker. Add the chopped onions and tomatoes. Also add the ginger garlic paste, slit green chillies, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt and just enough water to immerse the mutton. Close and pressure cook for 3 whistles or about 20 minutes. If mutton is not soft, cook for a further 5-10 minutes.
3.In a kadai, add oil and when hot, add the cinnamon and cloves. Then lower the heat and transfer the cooked mutton mixture to the kadai. Turn heat to high and cook till the mixture has thickened slightly. Add the ground coconut masala and water if required to thin to the desired consistency. Stir well and let it come to a boil. Simmer covered for 5-10 minutes. Uncover, give it a good stir and switch off. Serve hot with steamed rice.