Curry doesn’t need to be stodgy. I’ve had too many evenings waddling away from a local establishment to want to repeat the experience. I love the flavours and heat but not the grease.
I love a recipe for Rajasthani lamb served with a rich Marsala sauce and a sweetcorn chutney. It lets the good meat speak for itself and keeps the sauces as a lift when needed. Over the Bank Holiday weekend we had friends round and so I decided to use the last of my Kenilworth Free Range lamb and serve it with a sweetcorn sauce. I found a recipe and had most of the ingredients but just needed a few little adaptations. It was delicious.
It begins with rendering 100g of finely diced lamb fat. The recipes I saw called for lamb trimmings or lamb stock (neither of which I have) but I thought using lamb fat would get some lambiness into the sauce without adding to the fat content over the ghee alternative. To the fat I added 8 cloves, three green cardamom pods and a bay leaf. The original recipe called for black cardamom pods and I don’t think I have ever had any! I figured green would add some nice aromatics to the sauce.
I let this just begin to crackle and pop before adding two finely chopped onions and let them sweat a little. When they were soft but not colouring I added a decent stick of ginger, finely chopped, and two cloves of smoked garlic. Again, the garlic was a variation to the recipe because of the smoking but I thought it would add to the homeliness with the garlic and the sweetcorn. I then added a level teaspoon of turmeric and a good teaspoon of salt.
I then added a generous 200g of sweetcorn and 4 tablespoons of low fat Greek yoghurt. This is the part of the recipe that I don’t really get. When I have done this before I didn’t end up with a smooth sauce or chutney but rather the sweetcorny thing you’d expect. I let it simmer for about thirty minutes as the recipe suggested. It was a bit finger-in-the-air; I know what I wanted to end up with but the mixture felt too dry. I thought I may need to cover the pan but instead I opted for keeping an eye on it and adding a little water.
At the end of the thirty minutes I added 150ml of boiling chicken stock and gave it a further ten minutes. When it was cooling I added the juice of half a lime and a squirt of sriracha just to give it a little warmth. I let it cool and then put 80% of the mixture into a blender before blending to a lovely thick smooth sauce. I put it back in the pan with the remaining mixture and stirred in a good handful of finely chopped parsley.
The result was fabulous like a sweet daal which worked nicely as a sauce with juicy lamb chops but also as a dip with some pieces of naan bread. I served the whole thing with some sweet potato and some cauliflower rice.