Some days back, I had tweeted asking for Kashmiri home style cookbook recommendations. Thanks to the wonderful people who replied, I learned of a charming blog called ‘Daan Kutth’ which has great content and you should check it out too! I also discovered some great books through your recommendations, of which I am currently checking out ‘Kashmiri Cooking’ by Krishna Prasad Dar. A huge thank you to everyone who helped out. You are fabulous!
A particularly generous reply came from Marryam H Reshii who apart from posting the most fetching travel and food images on Instagram, is a food critic with The Times of India and also posts her writings about food and travel on her popular website which you can check out here. Marryam shared her recipe of Kashmiri Mutton which you can read below:
Home style Kashmiri Mutton
- Mutton, 1 kg
- Onion, 1
- Garlic, A few cloves (2 cloves garlic per piece of meat)
- Cinnamon, One small stick
- Black cardamom, 1
- Green cardamom, 2
- Clove, 1
- Saunf/ Fennel seeds powder
- Haldi/ Turmeric powder
- Kashmiri Mirch/ Red Chilli powder (preferably ‘MDH Kashmiri Mirch’)
- Vegetable of your choice (Peas/ Potato/ Tomato/ Cauliflower)
- Shahi Zeera
- Mustard Oil
- Salt, to taste
- Saute the onion, garlic cloves and mutton till the onion dissolves. It is vital that you do not brown any of them.
- Add cinnamon, black cardamom, green cardamom and clove. Saute a bit more.
- To this, add (1-2 heaped tsp) chilli powder, (1 rounded tsp) haldi, (1/2 tsp) saunf powder. Put on slow fire and stir till the masalas mix well with the meat.
- Pour an appropriate amount of boiling hot water and season with salt. Close the lid and pressure cook. Simmer after one cooker whistle.
- In a separate kadhai, add oil to saute vegetables till half cooked.
- Add salt and the same three masalas (red chilli powder, saunf powder and haldi). Mix well.
- When the meat is almost done, open the pressure cooker and tip in the half-cooked vegetables.
- Close the pressure cooker, allow one final whistle.
- Crush Shahi zeera by rubbing it between your finger and thumb. Add to the dish. Leave to sit for 10-15 minutes (or more) before serving. Enjoy!
Some helpful tips from Marryam:
- Kashmiri homes usually do not favor small tikkas of mutton off the bone. To them, it’s akin to eating vegetables! So large sizes of mutton are used (75 grams per piece).
- Medium of cooking is traditionally mustard oil. See what you are comfortable with. Mustard oil does have to be brought to smoking point first.
- If doing this regularly, get fat saunf, grind it and store carefully!
- Color of the gravy HAS to be red. Gravy HAS to be smooth, not lumpy. Brown gravy is anathema in Kashmir. Vegetables are a matter of personal preference.
- Keep potatoes in half inch thick slices. First deep fry in haldi and oil, then add to masala. Same for cauliflower; Use large florets, deep-fried.
- Tomatoes have to be sauteed till their texture is lost.
- Peas have to be whole, not mashed.
- Ginger is never used. Garlic always is!
Here’s my comic version of the same:
If you enjoyed reading this, do like and share! 🙂 I am always looking out for interesting food stories, history and recipes. If you know of something similar, do share by leaving a comment below!