Kashmiri lamb curry

I’ve been watching Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution – the final episode aired on TVNZ last week.

Set in Huntington, West Virginia, Jamie tries to turn the school lunch program away from processed and sugar-rich food into ‘home-cooked’ fresh cooked food. And what a struggle he had. He was met with passive and aggressive resistance at every point along the way. Some of this was obviously manufactured for the camera, but there was also a pervasive ignorance and head-in-the-sand mentality from many influential people in the Huntington community. Whether Jamie Oliver is successful long term remains to be seen.

But I digress. As part of the industry that is Jamie Oliver he publishes a bi-monthly magazine called Jamie. It’s damned good and I have cooked several of his recipes from this publication. You’ll find his homemade baked bean recipe on this site, a family favourite.

I bought some diced lamb from the local butcher and looked for something to make me and my boys. The photos of this dish in the magazine looked so delicious that I had to give it a go – and what’s more I actually had 90 per cent of the ingredients.

This recipe is adapted to suit what I had in the pantry. I also found, on the final taste test, that it was a little bitter so added some lumps of dark cane sugar to smooth the flavour. So, the ingredients are what I cooked, not what Jamie recommends.

Served 3 adults so increase ingredients accordingly.

Kasmiri lamb curry


  • 4 garlic cloves
  • thumb sized piece of fresh ginger
  • dollop of olive oil
  • 3-4 green cardamom pods
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 1 white onion chopped
  • 700 g diced lamb
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tspn chilli powder (or more according to taste)
  • 1 400g tin tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp of dark brown cane sugar
  • salt and pepper


In a mortar and pestle mash the garlic and ginger into a paste and set aside. Or, I reckon you could put both the ginger and garlic through a garlic crusher.

Heat the oil in a saucepan and add the cardamom, cinnamon and onion and fry gently until golden brown.

Add the lamb and fry, stirring occasionally until brown. You’ll find a lot of liquid comes out of the lamb – I reduced this until it was a thick gravy. Add the ginger and garlic paste and fry for a further 10-15 minutes until the dish is dark and aromatic.

Add the coriander, chilli powder and cane sugar. The add the canned tomatoes chopping or mashing them in the pan. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15-20 minutes until the liquid reduces and the tomato has turned a deep brown.

I served this with rotti bread and plain basmati rice. Everyone loved it and I’m sure it will be cooked many more times in our household.

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