Freshly-ground pastured lamb with onions, garlic, chiles and toasted spices is sizzled in cardamom-scented ghee and served over almond-raisin basmati with a chutney of fresh mint, coriander, ginger and yogurt..
For the Chutney (adapted from a recipe by Madhur Jaffrey)
2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves
2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ginger
1/3 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
Wash fresh mint and coriander (cilantro) leaves, pat dry and place in the bowl of a food processor along with the ginger, yogurt and lemon juice. Pulse until finely chopped, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
For the Rice
1 cup basmati rice
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 tablespoons raisins, chopped
2 tablespoons raw almonds, blanched, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon dried rose hips (optional)
1 teaspoon good curry powder
Cook rice in stock in the normal manner, then add raisins, almonds, rose hips and curry. Stir to combine. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons pan juices from the following recipe just before serving.
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted
2 teaspoons coriander seeds, toasted
1 tablespoon sweet cinnamon shards
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/3 of a whole nutmeg
1 pound freshly-ground pastured lamb
1/2 small yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 hot green chiles, minced
2 tablespoons ghee
6 green cardamom pods
1 sprig fresh curry leaves
1 fresh bay leaf
Grind the first 6 ingredients together in a coffee or spice grinder and set aside.
Loosely combine ground lamb together in a bowl with onions, garlic, chiles and ground spices. Divide mixture into 8 2oz pieces, using your hands to roll each into a not too-tightly packed ball, then set aside.
Heat ghee in a heavy skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add cardamom pods, bay and curry leaves and sizzle 2 minutes. Add lamb and cook until cooked through and crispy-brown on the outside, about 15 minutes. Briefly set aside to drain, then strain some of the butter & pan juices into the rice.
To serve, spoon rice into the center of a serving dish and arrange lamb over the top. Dress with chilled green chutney and serve immediately.