Thursday, January 13, 2011

Kheema (Minced Lamb and Peas)

This unassuming dish of minced lamb and peas may not excite you aesthetically. I don't blame you, it looks lackluster and sloppy. But don't be fooled my friends- hopefully you've learned not to judge a book by its cover...Beneath it's sub-par looks lies a whole range of depth and contrasting flavours. There's the juicy tender lamb basking in a  gravy of exotic spices. This is brilliantly paired with a sweet layer of peas- perfect little capsules that gently rupture with each bite. Each spoonful contains something sweet, salty, sour, earthy and fresh. This is one of my favourite ways to eat lamb...Trust me, it's properly amazing!

1 pound minced lamb or beef
1 medium onion, small dice
4 cloves garlic (grated or minced to a paste)
1 inch ginger (grated to a paste)
1/4 cup fresh coriander, minced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup frozen peas
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 chili thinly sliced
1 tomato, diced
1 cup water
1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in pan and saute onions. Sweat until translucent and add garlic. Cook until garlic is golden and soft. Add ginger, chili's. Add lamb and all the spices EXCEPT garam masala. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until nicely browned  and add and tomato and cook until tomato softens. Add 3/4 cup water, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover and simmer for 3o min. Increase heat to med-low and add garam masala, peas, coriander, lemon juice and 1/4 cup water. Simmer for 5 min. Taste and add salt if necessary. Serve with rice. Garnish with fresh cut chili, coriander and thinly sliced ginger.


  1. Great call Sara! Up there with the flashier haleem and nihari for me.

  2. Thanks Soobs- just went to Haandi for a haleem fix... ridic.