Sunday, August 10, 2014

Rogan Josh (No onion no garlic)

Rogan Josh (No onion no garlic) 

Tribute to the Kashmiri pandits 

I was rummaging through my folders for a delightful recipe for gosht and I decided on some Mutton Rogan Josh. Now I have these recipes collected a good 10 years ago. A 16 year old me knew that I would one day want to cook all of them. Over the years out of the many collected Kashmiri dishes I have stuck to 3 of them but I realized I must try my hands on the forgotten ones and hence my decision to make Rogan Josh. What put me in a dilemma at first where these two recipes for Rogan Josh that I had. One used onions and garlic and cockscomb flower and the other didn't use any onion or garlic and used curd.

I immediately searched the internet for more information on Rogan josh and thankfully there is a very nice article on Wikipedia which clearly states that the Kashmiri Pandits make it sans onions and garlic and uses curd to cut down the heat while the other version uses onions and garlic and sues cockscomb flower.  To be fair I went through some of the recipes given and most recipes use way too many spices. To be fair both my recipes were simple and I decided to stick to them because I personally feel the same spices used for all curries mars the distinct taste. I chose the recipe used by Kashmiri Pandits , well at least the recipe I have on my hands because meat without garlic and onion has always fascinated me.

Before I move on to the recipe I have a confession to make. I do not enjoy  mutton unless and until it has a melt in the mouth texture but in way should it be too soft and disintegrate with the gravy. Over the years I have tried two methods of achieving this soft delightful texture. I abandoned my former method of slow cooking for 3 hours on low heat with a faster method which also involves slow cooking but uses a pressure cooker and saves time and fuel. As someone who switched I have to say it yields the exact same result but you must use the lowest heat possible even with the pressure cooker.

So here goes the recipe.

Serves 4 to 5

1 kg of goat meat from the legs
1 teacup of whisked curd (cups which hold 200 ml liquid)
3/4th  cup of mustard oil (cup which holds 200ml of liquid)
5 cloves
1 tsp cumin seeds
Pinch of asafoetida
3 cups of water
2 tsp dried ginger powder
2 tsp aniseed powder
4 to 5  green cardamom roasted and crushed
1 tbsp ghee
Pinch of saffron soaked in water
Salt as per taste - I needed 1.5 tsp
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp sugar
1.5 tbsp kashmiri chili powder

Start by marinating the meat in the curd and leave it aside for 1 hour. Now heat the oil in a large wok and bring it to smoking point , lower heat and add the meat and immediately turn up the heat to seal the juices and keep frying and stirring for 2 minutes and then add the cloves , asafoetida  and cumin seeds and keep stirring till the oil separates and then add 1 cup of water , Kashmiri red chili powder , turmeric , salt and sugar and mix well and then simmer for 10 minutes.

Now take a big pressure cooker and put the meat in it. Add 2 cups of water , the dried ginger powder and aniseed powder, close the pressure cooker and cook on the lowest heat possible till the first whistle. Immediately turn off the stove after the first whistle and let the steam come out on its own.

Once it is ready open the lid and check the meat with a fork if the meat falls apart then take out the meat and put the gravy in the wok and bring to a boil adding the green cardamom , saffron dissolved in water  and ghee and then simmer for 10 minutes and add the meat and mix well and serve with hot rice .

In case the meat is not tender enough for you after you open the lid of the pressure cooker put the gravy and meat together in the wok and add the cardamom, saffron dissolved in water  and ghee and bring to boil and simmer for 7 minutes to 10 minutes. There you have melt in the mouth beautiful Rogan Josh .

Watch this space for the other version of Rogan Josh which is coming very soon for you 

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