Lamb Keema

Such a simple but deliciously easy dish to prepare using a well stocked store cupboard’s ingredients is my lamb keema recipe.  When I worked for an accountancy practice, one of the clients I used to go out and visit would often feed me some of this for lunch that his wife had made. Bear in mind that they had two young girls who ate this – it would have me almost in tears with the heat – I’m such a wimp!  Be assured that mine is nowhere near as hot as that, but it can be if you want it to!

  • 2 medium onions
  • 15ml Rapeseed oil
  • ½tsp Cumin seeds
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1-2 chillies (according on taste)
  • 200g tinned tomatoes
  • 2tsp Garlic & Ginger paste (or 1tsp of each)
  • 1tsp Turmeric
  • ½-1tsp Chilli powder (according to taste)
  • 1tsp Garam masala
  • 500g Lamb mince
  • Salt
  • 50g frozen Peas
  • Cup water
  • Fresh Mint
  • Fresh Coriander
  • 4tbs natural yoghurt
  • 2tsp Mint sauce concentrate
  1. Finely chop the onions.
  2. Heat the oil in a large pan.
  3. Add the cumin seeds and bay leaves and fry off for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the onion and cook until starting to brown.  This should take 3-4 mins.
  5. Add the chopped chillies and the tomatoes.
  6. Stir through thoroughly and cook for 1 minute.
  7. Add the ginger and garlic paste, the turmeric, chilli powder, garam masala and mince.
  8. Stir, breaking the mince down to separate it.
  9. Add ¼ tsp salt and the cup of water, along with the frozen peas and stir thoroughly.
  10. Simmer for 20 minutes until cooked and the liquid has reduced by two thirds.
  11. Chop the mint and coriander finely.
  12. Add the herbs to the keema, mix together and cook for 1 minute.

  1. Remove and discard the bay leaves.
  2. Mix the natural yoghurt with the mint sauce concentrate.

  1. Serve the keema with a spoonful of the minted natural yoghurt, along with a naan bread.

Jersey Royal Potato and Vegetable Curry

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One of the recipes I’m sharing with you using the deliciously nutty and seasonal Jersey Royal Potatoes in collaboration with Asda is for a vegetable curry. Inspired from a recipe my husband found online, he’s adapted and cooked this one for me (as I’m currently recovering from having knee surgery a couple of days ago, and therefore not able to stand for periods of time). Thanks Will x

The ingredients aren’t set in stone for this one; add or remove ingredients that you do or don’t like. (I personally don’t like mushrooms, but he does, so they went in and I picked them out of my dinner). The Mange Tout came from our garden, the French beans were reduced in price in our local supermarket as they had to be sold on the day, as was the courgette. All other ingredients we had at home as staples in our cupboards/fridge.  It looks like a lot of ingredients, I know!

  • 30ml Sunflower oil
  • 2.5ml Black Mustard seeds
  • 2.5ml Cumin seeds
  • 2.5ml Fennel seeds
  • 2.5ml Fenugreek seeds
  • 3 Cardamon pods
  • 1 medium Red onion, chopped
  • 1 large White onion, chopped
  • 3 sticks Celery, diced
  • 2 medium carrots, diced
  • 2.5cm fresh Ginger, grated
  • 5 cloves Garlic, crushed
  • 5ml Salt
  • Medium sweet potato, cubed
  • 10-12 Jersey Royals, cubed
  • 5ml Chilli powder
  • 5ml Turmeric
  • 5ml Cumin
  • 5ml ground Coriander
  • 1 whole Chilli, finely chopped
  • handful of French Beans, sliced in half horizontally
  • 8-10 Mange Tout, sliced in half horizontally
  • 1 cup frozen Peas
  • 1 medium Courgette, diced
  • 50g button Mushrooms, halved
  • Can coconut milk
  • Fresh coriander, chopped.
  1. Prepare all your vegetables as above.  You can keep the following together in bowls as they’ll be added to the curry together in batches:
  • Red and white onions.
  • Celery and carrots.
  • Sweet potato and Jersey Royals.
  • French beans and mange tout.
  • Peas and courgettes.
  • Mushrooms.

(This is how my husband preps his ingredients to cook – I have to leave the kitchen; it’s all too much organisation for me!)

Jersey Royals with Asda

2. In a large saucepan/frying pan with a lid, heat the oil and add your mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds and cardamon pods.  Cook for 2-3 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse the oil.  The seeds may start to pop as they cook, don’t worry, this is normal.

3. Add the celery and the carrots, stir to coat evenly in the spiced oil and cook on a medium heat for 2-3 minutes.

4. Add the ginger, garlic and salt and coat evenly.  Cook gently for 4-5 minutes.

5. Add the sweet potato and the Jersey Royals, stir thoroughly and cook for 2-3 minutes.  If the vegetables start to stick to the pan, add a splash of water to loosen the mixture.

6. Add the chilli powder, turmeric, cumin powder and coriander powder, stir and cook for 2-3 minutes.

7. Add the fresh chilli and stir thoroughly.  Cook for 1-2 minutes.

8. Add the French beans, mange tout and stir.  Place the lid on the pan and simmer for 5 minutes.

9. Add the frozen peas and diced courgettes.  Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Jersey Royals with Asda

10. Stir in the mushrooms.  Place the lid on the pan and cook for 5 minutes.

11. Add the coconut milk, bring to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, put the lid on and simmer for 10-12 minutes until the vegetables are all cooked.

Jersey Royals with Asda

12. Finally stir through the chopped coriander and serve with boiled rice.

Jersey Royals with Asda

He cooked this on his little camping stove in the garden to tease the neighbours I think with the delicious smells, but we didn’t invite them to share the meal with us! HAHA!

This recipe is cooked in collaboration with Asda and Jersey Royals to highlight the versatility and great flavour of Jersey Royal potatoes.

Venison Tagine

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We love venison as its such a rich and lean meat that’s full of flavour and I was lucky to have been given a 3kg haunch of venison a while back by a colleague in exchange for making her daughter’s Christening cake. Her husband shot and butchered the venison, so I can be sure of it’s provenance.

 After boning the joint of meat, I divided it and used one portion to make a tagine in my slow cooker as follows:

500g Venison, cubed (you can use beef or lamb if you prefer)
30ml Rapeseed oil
2 Onions, sliced
2 Cloves of garlic, crushed
1tbs Ground coriander
1tbs Ground cumin
2tsp Ground ginger
1tsp Ground cinnamon
250ml Beef stock
400g tin Plum tomatoes
100g Dried apricots, chopped
2tbs Ground almonds
400g tin Chick peas, drained and rinsed

1. Heat the oil in a heavy based frying pan and fry the venison in batches until browned.
2. Transfer the venison into the base of your slow cooker.
3. Gently fry the onion & garlic in the pan for 5 minutes until softened, then add the ground coriander, cumin, ginger and cinnamon and fry gently for 2 minutes.
4. Add this onion & spice mixture to your venison in the slow cooker.
5. Pour your stock into your frying pan to deglaze and heat until just boiling.
6. Pour this stock mixture over your meat and spice mixture.
7. Add the plum tomatoes, chopped apricots, ground almonds and chick peas.
8. Stir well then place the lid on top.
9. Cook in the slow cooker on low for 12 hours or on medium for 8 hours.

Serve with cous cous and a little fresh, chopped coriander to garnish.

Curry paste – the homemade version

In 1989, just after we got married, I bought a book on Curries by Pat Chapman from Sainsbury’s.  Despite now owning several other curry recipe books, it’s still our ‘go to’ book for all things spicy!  We’ve been blending the spices into curry powder and cooking it out in to a curry paste ever since then.  It’s been tried and tested by many a guest to our house over the years, and as I used almost the last of my current batch making my chicken curry for dinner last night, I had to make some more today.  The benefit of making it today in the warm, dry weather, meant that I could cook it outdoors on my Cadac barbeque in the paella pan; sharing the amazing aroma with my neighbours and leaving my house smelling fragrant and not spicy for the next few days!

It’s incredibly simple to do, so here it is in it’s entirety.  All teaspoon measurements are ROUNDED.
 
12tsp Ground Coriander
6tsp Ground Cumin
5tsp Gram flour
5tsp Garlic powder
4tsp Fenugreek seeds
4tsp Paprika*
4tsp Turmeric
4tsp Garam Masala
1tsp Asafoetida
1tsp Ground Ginger
1tsp Chilli powder*
1tsp Mustard powder*
1tsp White ground Pepper
250ml Cider vinegar
250ml Vegetable oil

1. Measure all your ingredients into a large bowl.

2. Pour in your cider vinegar and enough cold water to make a paste that ‘dollops’ off the spoon without being too runny.
3. Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok (I used my paella pan on my Cadac).
 
4. Add the curry paste (be careful as it’ll spit initially due to the water content).
 
5. Cook for about 15 minutes until the water has evaporated.  You’ll know it’s cooked as when you leave it for a short while, the oil will rise to the surface of the paste.
6. Allow to cool for a few minutes and then decant into sterilised jars.
 
7. Heat a little more oil and pour over the top of the curry paste to prevent air getting to it.
 
8. Seal the jars and store in a cool, dark place for a couple of weeks before using.
The recipe above is for a mild curry paste, however if you increase the quantities of Paprika, Chiili and Mustard you can increase the heat to your own preference. Similarly, if you don’t have all the ingredients listed above, it’s fine to leave one or two of the smaller quantities out.
This goes perfectly in my Chicken Curry Recipe.
 
The curry paste recipe is NOT originally my own, but it’s one we’ve been using for 25 years now. Thanks to Pat Chapman and to Sainsbury’s for a fabulous book – you should re-publish this!