Vindaloo, one of many types of curry, originated in the western region of India. It is derived from a Portuguese dish “carne de vinha d’alhos,” pork marinated in wine and garlic. It can be prepared with beef, chicken, lamb or seafood; although not traditional, potatoes sometimes are added. Almost universal on Indian restaurant menus, Vindaloo is one of the hottest curry dishes. Traditionally, it is extremely hot, so adjust the amount of chiles to your tolerance level.
This recipe has three steps: preparing the marinade, making the curry paste, and cooking the curry. The curry paste and marinade may be made one day ahead.
- 1/4 cup whole grain mustard
- 2-4 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes (or four to six dried chiles)
- 1 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp coarse, kosher salt
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 yellow onion
- 3 tbsp coriander seed
- 4-6 dried Kashmiri or Thai (hotter) chiles
- 1 tbsp cumin seed
- 8 cloves garlic (about 2 1/2 tablespoons)
- 1 (two-inch) stick cinnamon
- 1 tsp black peppercorns
- 2 tsp fenugreek seeds
- 1 tsp fennel seed
- 1 (one-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
For the Lamb
- Prepare the curry paste by combining all of the ingredients in a glass bowl.
- Prepare the marinade by grinding the coriander, cumin, cloves, cinnamon, peppercorns, fenugreek and fennel in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle. Process the chiles with the garlic, onion and ginger to form a paste. Place the meat into a container. Pour the marinade over the meat and marinate, refrigerated, for at least three hours or overnight. Remove the lamb from the marinade and drain. Combine the curry paste with the vinegar. Rub the paste onto the meat.
- Put oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and fry until it is dark brown but not burnt. Add the garlic and fry for 30 seconds. Add the meat, stir and brown for about five minutes. Pour in the coconut milk. Add more water, if necessary, to just cover the meat. Bring to a boil, cover the pot, reduce to a simmer, and cook for about an hour or until the lamb is tender. Stir occasionally and add more liquid if necessary.
- Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve over hot Basmati rice with mango chutney and Naan bread.
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Publisher | Christened the "Pope of Peppers" by The New York Times, Dave DeWitt is a food historian and one of the foremost authorities in the world on chile peppers, spices, and spicy foods.
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