Lamb Karahi from Naan-N-Curry for Chef's Secrets

Chef's Secrets

Lamb Karahi
Naan-N-Curry Restaurant, Renton
Owner & Executive Chef Majid 'Mike' Janjua

Chef’s note: Karahi means shallow pan or Indian wok. I made our award-winning lamb karahi in a live performance in Lahore, Pakistan, on New Year’s Eve and won first prize. There were more than 400 participants from all over the globe.

2 pounds boneless leg of lamb, cut in 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup cooking oil
4 ounces finely chopped onion
1 generous tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 tablespoons garlic, finely chopped
6 ounces tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 ounce fresh ginger sticks (julienne slivers of fresh ginger)
2 ounces cilantro, finely chopped
2 serrano peppers, or to taste, chopped
1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon coriander seeds, coarsely ground
1 tablespoon whole cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

Wash and lamb in cold water and drain well. Trim all fat. Mix yogurt, salt, coriander and cumin seeds, turmeric and black pepper, and marinate lamb for 30 minutes.

Heat oil in a shallow pan or in an Indian wok. Add chopped onion, and when translucent add ginger and garlic; stir frequently until light brown. Add marinated lamb, stirring frequently until meat is well browned. Add half the ginger sticks, and stir in; add half the cilantro, half the tomatoes and half the serrano peppers.

Stirring frequently, fry the meat mixture for about 10 minutes until tomatoes are reduced to pulp. Add a little water if necessary to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of pan.

Add 2 cups of water to the pan, stir well and simmer 20 to 25 minutes or until the meat is almost tender and nearly all the water has evaporated.

Add remaining ginger sticks and serrano peppers. Stirring frequently, fry the mixture for few more minutes. Add tomatoes and sprinkle with cumin seeds. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro and serve in the same shallow pan or individual shallow bowls.



I am confused by the photo accompanying this recipe. The lamb does not appear to be cut in half inch dice, as the instructions state, and the tomatoes on top (are they tomatoes or carrots?)appear huge. If they are tomatoes and used as a garnish, perhaps this should have been mentioned in the recipe. Perhaps the pan, or should I say kahari?, is very small and thus the food appears too large -- there is no frame of reference.

This recipe looks delicious and I plan on making it very soon, but a word to the photographer/food stylist about portraying a more honest representation of the dish might be in order. Artistic license is a wonderful thing but not helpful when one is trying to conger up an what the finished dish is supposed to look like.


I agree about the photo! The karahi pans come in several sizes but I believe they used a tiny (6") pan to show the dish and got really close up. I made lamb Karahi this afternoon to eat later while watching the Super Bowl :>) It is delicious but nothing like the picture. Other than the lamb, the recipe calls for the ingredients to be finely chopped and the finished dish does not have big chunks of tomato. Nonetheless, it's very good and worth making. I am going to serve it over rice as I don't have any naan handy.


How many servings is this for?


Why do you use so Much Oil?

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