• Helen Phillips

Lamb Madras

I've been on a curry-fest weekend.

Friday I made Naan and ate with a spicy Lamb Madras I rescued from my freezer. A great protein hit after hill training on Friday in the cold.

A lot of my go to foods whilst training are hearty stews and curries. I love homemade curry with either basmati or homemade naan breads and chutney. This is a great recipe to make on “long slow run” day. The lamb roasts slowly smothered in spice for hours. By the time you’re back, stretched and showered your lamb is begging to be released from the oven. You can either finish your prep and eat it there and then. Or allow to cool, and reheat later.

I am unapologetic about including a recipe that is more fatty than you might expect in amongst fitness food recipes. The complexity and strength of the spice mix and the flavor of the end dish you’ll agree will perk you up, and the quality protein from lamb will repair aching muscles from that long run.

This recipe uses whole spices to make a curry powder, rather than relying on shop bought mix. Overall the flavor of the madras is fresh, rich and fragrant. Well worth the extra time taken to grind the spices. You probably won’t need to use all the spice mix for this dish. The curry powder will keep for a few weeks ready for your next curry creation!

To make the spice mix place 2tbs coriander seeds, 2tbs fenugreek seeds, 1tbs mustard seeds, 1tsp cumin seeds, 1tsp fennel seeds, 1tsp black peppercorns, 1 small cinnamon and 5 cloves in a spice grinder and grind to a powder. Transfer the spice mix to a small bowl and stir in 1tbs turmeric. Be careful with turmeric, it has the tendency to turn everything yellow!

Pulse a green chilli, 4 garlic cloves and 2 cm peeled ginger in a small food processor until everything is finely chopped.

Rub a shoulder of lamb (about 2.5kg) with oil (I use rapeseed, a great multipurpose oil) and season with salt and pepper.

Heat a glug of oil in a flameproof casserole and brown the lamb. Once the lamb is browned on all sides remove, add 1 sliced large onion and fry gently until the onion is translucent. Add in 2 tbsp of the spice mix, the garlic, chilli and ginger paste, 1tbs curry leaves, 1tsp green cardamom pods and 3 bay leaves and give everything a thorough stir.

Add the lamb back into the casserole with a 14 oz tin chopped tomatoes, 200ml stock (lamb, beef or vegetable depending upon what you have available), 2 tsp tamarind paste and season with salt and pepper. Cover and roast the lamb in a low oven at 170C/150C fan for 3-4 hours, basting every now and then with the spicy juices.

Cook the lamb until the meat is tender and falling off of the bone. Then remove the lamb from the sauce, remove the meat from the bone and add it back into the thick sauce. The meat will be falling off the bone after all that long slow cooking, so you need to “shred” into bite sized morsels, than cutting into chunks!

I ate this with naan and rice .... I'm training so feel no "carb guilt!"

#Lamb #Curry