Afghani-style mutton chop karhai with pepper, coriander and cumin

4
60 minutes

Ingredients

  • mutton, 6–8 chops (depending on size)
  • 1 tbsp of cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp of coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp of black peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp of ghee
  • 1 tsp garlic, grated
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger, grated, plus 1 thumb-sized piece julienned
  • 8 tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 tbsp of dried crushed chillis
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp of chopped coriander, to garnish
  • juice of half a lemon, to serve
  • 1 green chilli, finely chopped, to garnish (optional)

Method

1
Begin by boiling the mutton chops for 15–20 minutes in a pan of water. Take the chops out and reserve the cooking liquid
2
In a dry pan, add the cumin, coriander and peppercorns and gently toast over a medium heat until the spices are aromatic. Grind the spices together in a spice grinder or with a pestle and mortar (this will make more than needed for this recipe, but the spice mix can be stored for 1 month in a airtight container)
3
Heat the ghee in a wok or similar large pan (which has a lid), add the chops and allow to seal on all sides, then set aside. In the same ghee, add the grated ginger and garlic and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Be careful not to let it burn, if starting to catch, add a few splashes of the reserved mutton chop water
4
Add the tomatoes, red chilli flakes, 1 heaped tbsp of the ground spice mix, salt and stir through. Add about 25ml of the reserved mutton water, then return the chops to the pan
5
Cover the pan and cook over a medium heat until the mixture begins to boil, lower the heat slightly and cook until the mixture becomes thick and dry, with the oil rising to the top
6
Serve hot with naan or rice, garnished with a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice, the chopped coriander and julienned ginger, and some finely chopped green chilli for extra heat, if liked