Spicy Goat, Tomato and Coconut Curry

1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
15 black peppercorns
5cm cinnamon stick
4 cloves
1kg boneless goat meat, or 1kg bone-in goat meat
3 small onions, finely chopped
3 tomatoes, chopped
15g ginger, peeled weight - grated into a paste
8 fat garlic cloves - grated into a paste
3 - 6 green chillies, whole but pierced
salt, to taste
2 tbsp ghee (or vegetable oil and butter)
200-300ml coconut milk, to taste
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice, to taste

Serves 4

Serve with Indian Breads


  • Using a spice grinder or a good mortar and pestle, pound the whole spices into a fine powder.
  • Place the Goat, 2 of the chopped onions, tomatoes, ginger, garlic, chillies, spices and salt in a large saucepan. Add 500ml water, bring to a boil, then cover and cook gently for 45-60 minutes, or until Goat is cooked and tender. Give the pot a stir every 10 minutes or so.
  • After about 45 minutes, melt the ghee in a small saucepan and from the remaining oil until well browned. If you don't have any ghee use half vegetable oil and half butter.
  • There shouldn't be too much liquid left in the pan once the Goat is cooked. Cook off any excess moisture in the pan over a high flame for six or seven minutes, stirring often, until the sauce has mostly been absorbed by the meat. This bhunoing process with help homogenise the sauce and deepen the flavours. Add the browned onion and ghee.
  • Pour in the coconut milk and lemon juice, bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes; the sauce should be thick and creamy. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding lemon juice or coconut milk until the dish is perfect for you, then serve.

Mangalorean Mutton Curry

6 tbsp unsweetened desiccated coconut
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 rounded tbsp white poppy seeds
6 tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, sliced
20g fresh coriander leaves and stalks
1 - 3 green chillies, or to taste, stalk removed
10g fresh root ginger, peeled weight
6 fat garlic cloves
1 tomato, chopped
1/2 tsp tumeric
1/2 tsp ground coriander
salt, to taste
1kg boneless mutton, or 1kg bone-in diced mutton
1/2 - 3/4 tsp tamarind paste, to taste
1 tsp garam masala


  • Place the coconut in a small pan and dry roast for a minute or two, until golden. Grind with the cumin and poppy seeds until fine; I use a spice grinder.
  • Heat the oil in a non-stick saucepan and fry the onion until well browned, then tip into a blender along with the fresh coriander, chillies, ginger and garlic and a small splash of water. Whizz to a fine paste. Return to the pan and saute for six to eight minutes. Add the tomato and all the powdered and ground spices except the garam masala, salt and around 100ml water. Saute for seven or eight minutes, until the tomatoes have become pulpy.
  • Add the meat and saute in the paste for four or five minutes. The paste should have completely reduced and be clinging to the meat, while the oil should be coming out of the masala. Add enough water to come three-quarters of the way up the Mutton, bring to a boil, cover and simmmer for around 45 - 55 minutes, or until done, stirring occasionally. Remember that Mutton will take considerably longer than Lamb; allow 90 minutes if using Mutton, just in case.
  • Uncover, stir in the tamarind and garam masala. The sauce should be lovely, cream and homogenous by now; if necessary boil off excess water or add a little extra from the kettle, until the consistency is as you prefer. Taste and adjust the seasoning and tamarind to your taste.

​Serves 6, can be halved

Creamy, Nutty Lamb Curry with Dried Figs

60g cashew nuts
200ml whole milk
5 tbsp vegetable oil
3 small onions, sliced
6 large garlic cloves
20g ginger, peeled weight
160g plain full-fat yoghurt (not too sour, if it is add a little less)
salt, to taste
1Kg boneless diced Lamb
7.5cm cinammon stick
6 cloves
7 green cardamom pods
2 blades mace
2 bay leaves
1 - 3 green chillies, whole but pierced
1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
4 tbsp double cream, or to taste
1 - 1 1/4 tsp garam masala, or to taste
6 large dried ready-to-eat figs, halved or quartered
handful of pistachios, shelled and blanched, or flaked almonds


  • Soak the cashew nuts in the milk for 10 minutes, then blend them together until smooth and set aside.
  • Heat 4 tbsp of the oil in a non-stick saucepan. Add the onions and fry gently for 10 - 12 minutes, until soft and translucent. Remove two-thirds of the onions, set aside, and continue to fry the rest until well browned. Remove and set these aside seperately. Put any residual oil into a small bowl. Give the pan a wipe with kitchen paper.
  • Blend the soft, pale onions with the garlic, ginger and yoghurt to a smooth paste; season. If you have time, marinate the Lamb in this mixture for at least 1 hour; ideally, cover the dish and refrigerate overnight.
  • Heat the remaining oil and any residual oil (from cooking the onion), add the whole spices and bay leaves and allow them to sizzle for 10 seconds. Add the Lamb, marinade, green chillies and ground coriander. Bring to a boil over a moderate flame, stirring very often. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until all the yoghurt has been absorbed and the paste releases oil; the meat will start to stick to the pan.
  • Add enough water to cover the Lamb. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer gently for 45 - 60 minutes, or until the Lamb is tender. Stir the pot every 10 - 15 minutes or so, and make sure there is always some liquid in the pan. Uncover the pot and reduce the sauce in the pan until it comes just one-third of the way up the meat. Add the cashew nut paste, cream, garam masala and dried figs (if using). Bring back to a boil and simmer for three or four minutes, the sauce should be creamy. Stir in the reserved onions and sprinkle with the nuts.

Serves 6