Easter has just been around the corner and during the long Easter break I took the opportunity to try out this very simple yet interesting recipe. One of the things that really excites me about this recipe is its simplicity. The use of simple easily available ingredients to marinade the leg of lamb. After marinating the lamb, it is lightly coated with flour and gently browned to seal in all of the wonderful marinade and juiciness within the meat. And then slowly cooked in either a pressure pot/ slow cooker/ in an oven until the fibers of the meat start to loosen and the fat starts to render, returning the meat to a moist and falling apart tender state. The gravy that the meat is cooked in is tomato based and what brings it to life is the wonderful medley of spices in the Mangalore Bunt Chilli Powder/ Spice Blend* (see notes below or substitute with any “Meat Masala powder” available in Asian stores, though must admit taste of preparation will differ)
I must say the leg of lamb turned out pretty good! The lamb was nice, moist, tender and falling apart and the spicy tomato gravy was full of flavour. I served the leg of lamb with steamed rice, a fresh salad and a good serving of greek yoghurt.
I would love to how you got on with this dish or any other recipes on this blog. I would absolutely love to see your dishes :)). Send me your pictures and messages via the Facebook page or leave me a comment at the end of this post or email me at [email protected]. Look forward to hearing from you.
*Leg of Lamb : 750gms. I used the lower leg/seperated at the joint . See notes below
*Tenderiser/ raw papaya paste : 1-2 tsp (optional) see notes below
Lemon juice: 1/2 lemon
Ginger- garlic paste: 2 tsps
Salt: 1/2 tsp
Plain Flour: 2 tbsps
Oil to fry: 2-3 tsps
To make gravy:
Ghee/ any oil : 2 tsp
Cardamom: 3 pods crushed
Cloves: 4 nos.
Cinnamon: 2 inch stick
Onions: 1.5 medium sized finely chopped
Tomato chopped : 1/2 can or 2 medium sized
*Bunt Mangalore Chilli powder: 1 – 2 tsps or as per your spice levels, alternatively use any “Meat masala powder” available in most Asian Stores.
Lemon juice to taste
Salt to taste
1. Trim all visible fat and the top papery covering called the fell using a sharp knife. Make deep gashes in the leg and rub the leg with the marinade. Leave for 2 hours.
2. Lighly dust the marinaded lamb leg with flour and gently brown all sides of the meat in a large pan or roasting tin with a little oil. Once browned keep the leg aside.
3. In a large enough pressure cooker (check whether leg fits in it before you start cooking) heat ghee/ oil , fry cinnamon, cloves and cardamom for a few seconds till aromatic. Add the chopped onion and brown lightly. Add the bunt chilli powder/ meat masala powder, take the pan off the heat and allow the spices to fry in the cooker for a few seconds ( do not allow the spices to burn). Add the canned tomato/ chopped tomato and salt and fry the mixture for a few minutes till tomatoes begin to soften. Add more oil if required to fry the mixture well.
4. Add the sealed lamb leg to the pressure cooker and add around a cup and half of water. Stir to mix. Then close cooker. Allow to the leg to cook on a medium high heat for 15-20 minutes ( 4-5 whistles). Then turn the heat down to minimum/ simmer and cook the leg for a further 25 minutes. Turn off heat and allow the pressure to drop.
Open cooker check for doness, meat should fall of bone. taste for salt, add lemon juice if required. Sprinkle over chopped coriander leaves if desired.
Serve with steamed rice, a fresh salad and a good serving of greek yoghurt.
See note below if using an oven.
1. A whole lamb leg consists of two separate cuts — the upper sirloin and lower shank – usually with two large bones. The lower shank/ lower portion of the leg tends to be sligthly tougher when compared to the upper sirloin. When cooking with the shank the optional use of a tenderiser and cooking in a pressure cooker/ slow cooker helps to tenderise meat.
The upper sirloin portion of the leg tends to be naturally tender hence can be slow roasted in a gravy in an oven to give you the same result. If using a whole leg follow steps 1, 2 ,3 then place the onion tomato spice mixture in a roasting tin, add enough water, stir, place the leg of lamb into the spice mixture. Cover with foil and cook in a preheated 325F oven until tender, about 3-5 hours for a whole leg or 2-3 hours for half a leg. Or check in between using a fork. The meat should fall off the bone.
2. An alternative to raw papaya paste is Kachri/tenderiser powder available at most Asian stores.
3. The Mangalore Bunt Chilli Powder is available in most Mangalore Stores in India. Alternatively you could make your own fresh and fragnant spice blend at home.(recipe coming soon)
Enjoyed this lamb recipe: Try out these too