Monday, March 29, 2010

Simple Lamb Curry

I'm apparently little bit obsessed with my newest culinary discovery.  My article over on Forkful of News today is a review of two of Judith Jones' books and now I'm posting for your cooking pleasure one of my favorite recipes of hers.  

It's just that she's a great writer, has had a jealousy inducingly interesting life and she also has amazing taste in food.  Most of the things the fella and I have eaten recently have come from her cookbooks.  She takes something simple like a steak or a curry and adds a little something extra to it that will make you rethink the way you've been cooking things all along.  And for someone like me who likes to know why something works instead of just being told what to do, I love that her recipes always include the reasoning  behind the instructions she provides.  I learned a lot about cooking just from reading her recipes.

Her book the Pleasure of Cooking For One was a lot of fun to cook out of the last time the fella was out of town.  She is a big proponent of cooking well for yourself and makings something special when you're alone, to make dinner a treat instead of a chore.  With that in mind she scales down huge feasts like Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon or tells you how to cook a whole duck and use every part of it to make meals for yourself for the week.  

And the recipes are amazing, I ate really well that weekend while cooking alone.  I had scallops and butternut squash risotto and this lamb curry.  Both were somewhat fancy but very simple, I defiantly felt treated and enjoyed my food which is sometimes hard to do when you're alone.  

I upped the scale on the portions from her original recipe to post here so that it makes dinner for two or dinner with left overs for the next day for one person.  Either way this is one of my new favorite curry recipes.  There is just something about lamb and curry that appeals to me and I could probably eat it everyday.

Simple Lamb Curry
4 tablespoon veggie oil
1 1/2 pounds lamb, cut into 1 inch piece
1 onion or 2 shallots, chopped
1/2 red pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
4 tablespoons curry powder
salt and pepper
lemon juice, to taste
1 1/2 cup broth of your choice
2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
1 small tart apple, cut into wedges

In a frying pan over medium high heat add 2 tablespoons of the oil until warm. Add the lamb pieces to the pan without crowding them. Brown the meat on all sides briefly without burning the meat or cooking the meat all the way through. Once browned set the meat aside.
Add the the other 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan and saute the onion, pepper and garlic for about 8 minutes or until softened but not browned. Add the cooked lamb, fennel seeds, and curry powder. Salt the lamb lightly then squeeze several drops of lemon juice into pan. Add broth of your choice, cover pan and cook at a decent simmer for about 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Reduce the heat and add more liquid if it evaporates too quickly.
When the sauce is your desired consistency add the coconut and apple slices, tossing them in the pan for about 5 minutes to warm through. Taste the curry, re-season with salt, pepper and lemon juice as needed then serve over rice or with flourless naan.

From Judith Jones' The Pleasures for Cooking for One. 


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