Mutton Rogan Josh – Kashmir special

I broke the cardinal rules of making rogan josh but still managed to make a top notch mutton rogan josh and I am mighty pleased with it. Mutton Rogan josh is a kashmiri delicacy, a spicy, deep and flavourful mutton curry that must undeniably be one of the best mutton curries around, a pride of India. This is probably why it features in most restaurant menus. There are many versions of mutton rogan josh but I liked the authority and confidence with which ecurry proclaimed its rogan josh and I can now vouch for it. I went ahead and added onions because I wanted more body to the gravy and I guess its ok ‘cos I am not a Kashmiri Pandit (who don’t include onions). Onions were not part of the original recipe. I substituted fresh ginger for dry ginger powder because I couldn’t find the stupid thing in the cupboard although I found 2 boxes of it 2 weeks later when I organized the kitchen. I always seem to have more of the rarely used ingredients but I am never able to find them when I need them in a recipe. Sounds familiar? Kashmir is famous for its apples, pashmina shawls, silk carpets, dum aloo and mutton rogan josh and militancy. Kashmir the much fought over state, at the northern end of India, one of the most picturesque places in the world and probably one of the bloodiest too features in Roja (directed by Mani Ratnam) an all-time hit and a classic. Mani Ratnam makes everything stylish. Suddenly engineers were sexy and romantic, patriotism was cool and chinna chinna aasais (little whims) were cute and adorable. There’s no girl who didn’t fall for Arvind Swamy in that movie. What a stunner! Ahem.. It’s Kashmir and Mutton Rogan Josh we’re talking about. Everybody wants a piece of Kashmir. Don’t know if everybody can have Kashmir, but everyone can have this mutton Rogan Josh. Follow the recipe exactly and it’s yours. Prep time: 20 mins Cooking time: 1 hour Serves: 4 Ingredients Mutton – ½ kilo cut into 2 inch piecesOnions – 3 large thinly sliced (not part of original recipe)Yogurt – 3/4 cup yogurt + 2 tablespoon yogurtLemon juice – from 1 lemonAsafoetida – ½ tspKashmiri Red chilli powder – 3 tbspGaram Masala powder – 1 tspDry ginger powder – ½ tbsp. (I substituted fresh ground ginger because I couldn’t...

Chicken Vindaloo

Chicken Vindaloo was the first thing that came to mind when I thought of Goa although I didn’t taste Vindaloo when I went to Goa a couple of years ago. I did taste a Goan fish curry which was quite remarkable too. This month being the statewise blogging marathon month, I and my fellow blogging marathoners will be posting a dish from each of the Indian states – one state a day. Today it’s Goa. Vindaloo was originally a Portuguese curry made out of pork marinated in wine. We ingenious Indians substituted chicken for pork and vinegar for the wine and included potatoes for good measure. So the Vindaloo of today is very much an Indian curry – hot, spicy and lip-smacking. I am always game for new ways to cook chicken and Chicken Vindaloo sounded just about perfect. I used the recipe from steamykitchen. I found that the curry tastes even better with rice than rotis. You’ll have to start a day early though. The chicken needs to marinate overnight for the Vindaloo. The Vindaloo was quite sour from all that vinegar and I thought it could do with a bit more heat. But a vindaloo is not a vindaloo without the vinegar. So don’t skip the vinegar if you’re making vindaloo. If you do, don’t call it a vindaloo.  Goa is a nice place, I loved their markets. They sell really cute shorts, pretty hats and beautiful coloured glass lamp hangers. I wasn’t as enthusiastic of the beaches as the beaches were crowded and hot (don’t know if it was the wrong time of year) and I’ve experienced enough of hot, crowded beaches right here in Chennai. I really wish I’d tasted more of their local cuisine which is actually my number one agenda when visiting any place. Number 2 is of course shopping. The next time I am in Goa, I am going to have to taste their Vindaloo and Bebinca, no excuses. Prep time: 15 minsMarinating time: OvernightCooking time: 30 minsServes: 5 Ingredients Chicken – 750 gmPotatoes – 2 medium cubedOnions – 2 large chopped fineOil – 2 tbspCumin seeds – ½ tspMustard seeds – ½ tspWater – ½ cupSalt to taste Marinade Vinegar – ¼ cupWhole Red chillies – 15 soaked in the ¼ cup vinegarGarlic cloves – 10Ginger – 3 inch piece chopped roughly Dry spice Mix Cinnamon – 2 inch pieceCloves – 5Cardamom – 3Cumin – ¾ tspMethi/Fenugreek seeds –...
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