Inspiration for this curry came from “the part travel essay, part recipe journal – Mangoes & Curry Leaves” .
Sri Lankan Lamb Curry
500 grms boneless lamb shoulder
1 tbs homemade coconut ghee or ghee
10 fresh curry leaves
1 green chilli, finely chopped
1 cup of finely chopped onion
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp sea salt
a cup of green peas or chopped spinach
1/2 cup fresh or canned coconut milk
1 tbs tamarind pulp (soaked in 1/4 cup of hot water for about 10 minutes, strain and discard the pulp and retain the liquid)
3 cups water (or home made lamb stock)
Dry Spice Mixture:
1 tbs raw white rice (Basmati)
1 tbs coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 (about 2 cm) piece cinnamon stick
5 to 6 cardamon seeds (from 1 or 2 green cardamon pods)
- Cut the lamb into 1/2-inch cubes and set aside.
- Dry roast the dry spice mixture in a skillet over medium-high heat for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until it has a good aroma. Using a mortar and pestle or a grinder, grind the mixture to a powder and set aside.
- In a wide heavy pot, heat the ghee over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, add the curry leaves, green chilli, onion, and tumeric and stir-fry for about 3 minutes. Add the lamb, stirring until the meat is browned.
- Add the dry spice mixture and the coconut milk and stir to coat the meat with the coconut milk.
- Add tamarind liquid and water/stock to the pot, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until meat is tender and the flavours well blended.
Note: I use the leftover from the slow roasted lamb to make this delicious, aromatic curry with fresh curry leaves from my garden. The original recipe uses beef. I have also made it with eggplants, potatoes and hard-boiled eggs.