AT A GLANCE
Korma curry came about during the Mughul Empire in India. It's usually a mild curry, although some versions include Kashmiri chilli to add a little heat, which we've done here. Our version starts with chaunk, a mixture of onions, ginger and spices slowly cooked in ghee, and we finish the dish with a paste made with almonds, coconut flesh and poppy seeds to flavour and thicken the gravy. We've used lamb neck here for its full flavour and served it with lacha, a raw onion salad, for a nice clean lift to the dish.
|01||Heat 1 tbsp ghee in a large wide saucepan over high heat. Season lamb neck well, then add to pan in batches and brown all over (5-7 minutes). Transfer to a plate.|
|02||Process onion, ginger and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Heat remaining ghee in the pan over medium heat, add onion mixture and cassia, and stir until very tender and starting to caramelise (20-25 minutes). Increase heat to high, add spices and stir continuously until fragrant (3-4 minutes). Return lamb to pan, stir to coat and add 1 litre water, season to taste and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer half-covered with a lid, stirring occasionally, until lamb is very tender and sauce is reduced to just cover meat (2-2¼ hours; add a splash of water if necessary during cooking). Remove lamb and set aside loosely covered with foil to keep warm.|
|03||For nut paste, meanwhile, preheat oven to 180C and roast almonds on an oven tray until toasted and golden (10-12 minutes). Cool briefly, then pound with a mortar and pestle with coconut flesh and poppy seeds until smooth, adding 2-3 tbsp of oil from the lamb sauce one at a time to help form a paste. Add to lamb with yoghurt, season well to taste and stir occasionally over a very low heat until sauce is thickened (20-30 minutes).|
|04||Meanwhile, for pilau, heat ghee in a large ovenproof saucepan over medium-high heat, add shallots and stir until fragrant and golden (about 5 minutes), then add curry leaves, garlic and spices, and stir until fragrant (1 minute). Add rice and stir until well combined (1 minute), add chicken stock and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, then cover with a lid, transfer to oven and bake until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed (15-20 minutes).|
|05||For onion lacha, toss onion, lime juice, chillies and a large pinch each of salt and ground white pepper in a bowl and set aside for flavours to develop (2 minutes).|
|06||Scatter korma with extra curry leaves and serve with pilau, onion lacha and yoghurt topped with cucumber and ground black pepper to taste.|
Note Ground Kashmiri chilli are available from Indian grocers and online from herbies.com.au.
FULL-BODIED TRADITIONAL AUSSIE SHIRAZ CABERNET BLEND. , suggested by MAX ALLEN