I chose braised or Leg of lamb with curry seasoning as star dish of my rice and curry Christmas dinner table. I had made many roasted Lamb dishes over the years with curry seasoning, they all turned out great. But really wished if there was a way flavorful seasoning blend can be more infused in to every bit of the lamb evenly. If there is any good ways to do it without cutting that big piece of meat into cubes, I just couldn’t see it. This year I was determined to make a full pledged curry and just give it a try. I am so glad I did. It turned out to be the best lamb curry dish I ever made with so many depths and layers of flavors distributed evenly throughout every bite.
Little bit about Lamb Curry in Sri Lanka
Lamb curry and three meat curry is often the choice for us Sri Lankans when we make Lamprais. In my culture, goat meat or venison is popular and much more available choice of meat when it come to making specialty meat curries, like three meat curry, lamprey curry or black curry. I am not giving you any of the typical Sri Lankan meat curry recipes today. Instead, recipe I am giving you now is my own and a one I had been working on for several months. I researched and made several Asian and Mediterranean recipes of cooking lamb until I was happy with the results I was looking for. This recipe is going to be my lamb curry in the oven.
if you are interested in reading more about Sri Lankan Lamprey curry look no further than author Dan Toombs recipe which is really awesome.
Choice of cooking utensils and cooking method for the lamb curry
Lets talk a little bit about best cooking pot for making curries in home setting. In my opinion it is non other than earthenware or red clay cooking pot. It should be able to withstand long cooking time on stovetop or in the oven. That means, when you can get your hand on such clay cooking pot you need to season it first by soaking it in water for at least two hours then rinsing. Next, apply a thin layer of oil and slowly heat with some scraped coconuts and rice until hot. Turn the heat off and let it cool completely. For this recipe, I am using Clay Dutch oven from Reston Lloyd. I got this over couple of months ago and results are so over the top every time I use it. two points to remember however, always starting with a cold oven and presoaking the clay Dutch oven in water at least for 15 minutes before adding ingredients.
If you haven’t got a clay pot please do not be alarmed. Second choice of making this curry is in enameled cast iron Dutch oven. Cast iron cookware is definitely, much easier to find than clay.
if you would like more help in picking up a clay pot for making curries. I highly recommend clicking on the button below to read through the rankings by my Asian cooking website
Little bit about choice of meat
I am going with boneless leg of lamb today. However, you can use any mix of cuts of lamb or goat meat for this curry. Adding leg bone will definitely enhance the flavor profile. Trim out the excess fat from the meat. I did trim out most of the roasting fat layer and kept only included about 10 % of the fat. You definitely do not want the curry to be extra greasy. Rinse meat in cold running water and pat dry with few paper towels. Cut into about two-inch cubes. With that done Let’s get currying.
Braised Leg of lamb /Lamb curry Recipe
Whole leg of lamb boneless 7 to 8 Lb.
For Roasted curry seasoning powder
- 2 tbsp toasted coriander powder
- 2 tbsp toasted Spanish paprika
- 2 tsp of toasted whole cumin seeds
- 1 tsp of toasted whole black cumin seeds
- 1 tsp of toasted fennel seeds
- 1 tbsp of toasted raw white rice
- 1 tbsp of toasted desiccated coconut
Whole roasted seasonings
- 5 roasted dry chilies
- 5 roasted curry leaves
- Roasted Fenugreek seeds
- 3 cloves of garlic (chopped fine)
- Handful of curry leaves (Sliced)
- 1 inch of ginger (minced)
- 3-inch piece of cinnamon
- 5 pods of cardamom
- 5 cloves
- One whole red Onion
- One Indian Bay leaf
- 3 tablespoons of Ghee
- 2 tablespoon of date vinegar (or one pitted date and red wine vinegar)
- 2 tsp of tamarind
- 1 teaspoon Lime zest or lime chili pickle
- 2 tablespoons of Salt
- 2 teaspoons of crushed black pepper
- Make roasted lamb curry seasoning by toasting all the seasoning under this section and grinding them together. Add the seasoning powder to meat, with salt and black pepper. Let the lamb marinate for 3 hours to overnight.
- Toast whole seasonings under that section and set them aside.
- Caramelize the onion in ghee with Indian bay leaf and cinnamon in a stainless-steel skillet. Remove from the pan. Sear the lamb pieces in the same pan you fried onions.
- Deglaze the pan with a cup of water and set aside.
- Pack the meat in to clay Dutch oven alternatively with caramelized onions, roasted whole spices and unroasted seasonings. Top with some caramelized onions and unroasted curry leaves. Add Indian Bay leaf as well
- Add the deglazed liquid. If you are using a cast iron Dutch oven add extra cup and half of water. If you are using the clay Dutch oven. Do not use any extra water. Just soak the clay Dutch oven for 15 minutes prior to adding the meat. Meat is going to cook on its own juices and is going to come out so much flavorful.
- Cover and cook in over at 350 degrees for 3 hours. until meat is fall apart tender. Open the lid and give it a stir after every one hour to distribute seasonings evenly.
I am happy to let you know all of my original recipes now include printable recipe page for you to download and make your own curry journal. if you click on the button below you could get to the catalogue page and easily browse and download the recipe you are looking for.