Thursday, 20 September 2012

Rimi's Special Kosha Mangsho

I made killer kosha mangsho today. And in the process, I created a wonderful secret ingredient.

Unlike my usual posts, this recipe is not illustrated, but I hope the flavour of this yummy dish will be a more than adequate recompense.You *must* try it.

You'll need an inch of ginger and four or five cloves of garlic, minced or ground together. A whole medium onion, three green chilies, and a small, firm tomato, pasted. Half a small onion, diced. 1.5 teaspoons each of cumin and coriander powder or paste, preferably made at home from whole seeds. Quarter teaspoon of turmeric paste. 5 or 6 tablespoons of curd/yogurt/doi. Whole garam masala (cinnamon sticks, cloves, green cardamom). Mustard oil, sugar, salt.

Marinate 500 to 700 gms of well-cleaned mutton in the doi, salt, and turmeric powder. If you like, you may also add the onion and tomato paste, plus the ginger-garlic mince here. Let this stand, covered, for at least two hours, but preferably overnight.

In a pressure cooker, heat and then cool a tablespoon of mustard oil. Saute four peeled and halved potatoes in it till the spuds take on a lightly golden colour. Drain and keep 'em aside.

To the same oil, now add lightly-malleted cinnamon sticks, green cardamom and cloves. When you can smell the spices frying -- and it's a heavenly smell -- add a teaspoon of sugar. Keep tossing till the sugar begins to melt (but not caramelise -- you don't want your kosha mangsho to taste like the upside of a burnt caramel custard). Once the sugar dissolves a little, add half a small onion, diced. Stir gently but constantly, till it's all nicely golden/brown. Scoop the spices, sugar and onions up from the oil, grind them to a paste, and keep it aside.

In the same pot, heat two more tablespoons of oil, and then let it cool for a minute. Lift the mutton off its marinade, shaking off as much of it as you can. Lay them carefully into the oil, and when its all in, begin tossing gently to fry all sides of each piece. This will take a while because you must do it on a low flame. A high flame will harden the meat.

Once the meat is browned, add the marinade. If you hadn't added the ginger-garlic and onion-tomato pastes to the marinade, add them to the pot now. Stir thoroughly for the first five minutes, making sure the paste doesn't remain raw and coats the meat well. Now add the cumin and coriander powder or paste (if it is a powder, mix it with a little oil to make a thick paste), with a teaspoon of sugar and quarter a level teaspoon of salt. Over the next ten minutes, stir occasionally, letting the spices roast and separate from the oil.

When it does separate, add the potatoes, toss the entire pot about till it mixes well with the spices, juices, and richly-flavoured oil, then add three cups of water. Use your spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the pan, and whirl them into the water you just added. When that's done, add the sugar, onion and garam masala paste you made. Stir well, dissolving it.

Now put the lid of the pressure cooker on, and let it simmer for about an hour. The whistle will probably go off twice or thrice in between, but don't turn the flame up just to make it sound. The more pressure the mutton is under, the more tender it will be. Patience is a virtue ;-)

Serve the wonderful final conoction with steaming white rice, or pulao, or parathas, or rooti. Bon apetit!