17/01/2012

Keema Karela Paneer

Exotic sounding, I know ... it's curry.

Keema - mince ... ground meat. Lamb. Karela - bitter gourd. Paneer - cheese.

First, the mince, then the karela, then the paneer.

Fry off some lamb mince in some fat - I used ghee. Lower the heat and set it to soften.

Meanwhile take some karela - these are bitter gourds and need some preparation.

Slice the gourds into centimetre slices and boil them in very salted water for a good hour! That does sound like a long time, but it is necessary to get them soft and take some of the bitterness out.

While that is going on, return to the mince.

Finely chop and onion, a few cloves of garlic and a good thumb of ginger. Pop these into the pan with the minced lamb.

Spice it up!

Turmeric, coriander, cumin and celery salt. Chilli flakes, asafoetida and a little white pepper. Squirt of tomato purée and we're done.

Let that mix steam in a sauté pan for a good while, adding more water to keep it wet.

Once the karela is soft, drain off and pour into the minced lamb.

Cook on ...

Cube up some paneer. Search your supermarket for paneer, or make it yourself.

Respectful of Hindi and Sikh people, paneer is set off with lemon juice rather than rennet. To make it yourself, boil up some milk and pour lemon juice in. Stir, stir and keep stirring. Pour into a muslin bag and place in a tray with a board and some weight on top to squeeze out the liquid. Once set, cube up.

... or buy it from a supermarket!

Cube up and chuck into the lamb mince and karela. Cook on with more water for another hour, or so. Some folks like to pre-fry the paneer ... I don't.

Okay ... done!

Serve up, or place into a dish for lunch tomorrow. That'll do me.

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