Thali Menu #138 -MILAAP – Celebrating the spirit of India
India is truly a multicultural melting-pot with history dating back a few thousand years. No surprises therefore that this rich long history has left a mark on all aspects of life including food. India boasts of a culinary heritage that is unique and varied every few hundred kilometers, if you were to travel the length and breadth of the country.
This August as India celebrates her 72 year of independence, we present Milaap~ meaning confluence, where we will take you on a culinary journey criss-crossing the country, and present curated Thali menus of iconic dishes from four states (North, South, East, and West of India). We promise you, the Thalis will be as grand a celebration as they sound!
Our last in the MILAAP series is with the states of Madhya Pradesh/MP (North/Central), Andhra Pradesh (South), Odisha (East), and Goa (West). Each of these states has a distinct culinary tradition influenced by geography, long history of different invasions and cultures with almost no similarities in their food habits, ingredients used or their dishes.
A challenge for us at Daana that we relished with delight, was to curate a menu that allows each state to shine through in equal measure with its culinary hallmarks and yet persent a perfect harmony and balance of flavours and textures.
We hope you enjoy this week’s thali as much as we enjoyed curating and cooking this for you.
Recipe of the week
Laal maas - a fiery Rajasthani meat curry with freshly roasted spices and a burst of red chillies
- 2 Small onions (finely chopped)
- 2 green chillies (finely chopped)
- 18-20 red chillies
- 2 tsp coriander seeds (whole)
- 1 tsp jeera
- 1 cup mustard oil
- 10 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
- 1 piece small ginger (finely chopped)
- 1/2 kg lamb (cut into pieces with bones)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup kachri powder (Kachri is a dried vegetable, a variety of cucumbers found in Rajasthan and ground into a powder, small. You will find this in an Indian grocery store.)
- 3-4 pods cardamom
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 cinnamon stick
- A pinch of mace
- 1 pod black cardamom
- Handful coriander leaves (chopped)
1.Dry roast the red chillies to give it a nice distinctive aroma which adds great flavor to the dish.
- 2.Add to that the coriander seeds and cumin seeds.
- 3.Once done, grind it into a nice fine powder.
- 4.Heat some mustard oil in a pan. Add to this the garlic and ginger.
- 5.Once the garlic turns slightly brown add the lamb pieces.
- 6.Give it a good mix. This is also a good time to add salt.
- 7.Now add the kachri powder. Not only does this powder tenderize the meat, its also adds a nice tangy flavor to it.
- 8.Now add the chopped onions and mix all well.
- 9.Once the onions have roasted well add the whole spices, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, mace, black cardamom. Stir well.
- 10.Now add the red chilly powder and let it roast for about a minute.
- 11.Add enough water to cook the lamb. Cover it and let it simmer for a couple of minutes till the meat is cooked.
- 12.Once the meat is cooked, take out all the pieces on a platter and strain the gravy.
- 13.Straining the gravy gets rid of all the whole spices and keeps the essence and flavors intact.
- 14.Now add the lamb pieces you had taken out to the refined gravy and put it back on fire but on low heat.
- 15.Add about 1/2 cup water and some coriander leaves.
- 16.Let it simmer for a while and when you reach a good consistency of gravy, turn off the heat.
- 17.Serve hot with a good garnishing of chopped coriander leaves.
Serve with Rice or Roti