Citizens – I apologize profusely that I’ve been neglectful of daily postings the last 10 days! My recent jaunt to the Ultima Thule, the furthest North, has left me jetlagged and this lack of ardor on my part must and shall be fixed with alacrity!
Let’s get back into the posting groove with one of my favorite dishes and recipes, shall we? Rogan Josh is an aromatic mutton or lamb dish of Persian origin, though now identified with Indian cuisine.
Rogan (روغن) means “oil” in Persian, while Josh (جوش) means “heat, hot, boiling, or passionate”. “Rogan Josh” thus means cooked in oil at intense heat.
Another interpretation of the name Rogan Josh is derived from the word “Rogan” meaning “red color” (the same Indo-European root that is the source of the French “rouge” and the Spanish “rojo”) and “Josh” meaning passion or heat.
My version of Rogan Josh focused on authenticity and balanced flavor – I believe you, my most loyal citizens, will find it worthy of your next meal! 🙂
Battle on – The Generalissimo
2 1″ chunks fresh ginger, peeled, coarsley chopped
8 cloves garlic, peeled
2 cups water or chicken stock (preferred)
10 tablespoons ghee
2 pounds boned lamb shoulder or leg — cut into 1″ cubes
10 whole cardamom pods, bruised
2 whole bay leaves
2 whole black cardamom pods (cracked open)
6 whole cloves
10 whole black peppercorns
1 stick cinnamon, broken into 4 pieces
2 medium onions, peeled, finely chopped
1 teaspoon coriander seed — ground
2 teaspoons cumin seeds — ground
4 teaspoons red paprika
⅛ teaspoon hing (asafetida)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, (adjust to taste)
1 teaspoon Jane’s Krazy salt, to taste
6 tablespoons plain yogurt
¼ teaspoon cornstarch (mix with yogurt to prevent curdling)
1/4 teaspoon Hirshon garam masala
1 dash fresh ground pepper to taste
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Put the ginger, garlic and 4 tablespoons of water into the container of an electric blender. Blend well into a smooth paste.
Heat ghee in a wide, heavy pot over a medium-high flame. Brown meat cubes in several batches and set aside in a bowl. Put the cardamoms, bay leaves, cloves, peppercorns, and cinnamon into the same hot ghee.
Stir once and wait until cloves swell and the bay leaves begin to take on color. This takes just a few seconds. Now put in the onions. Stir and fry for 5 minutes or until the onions turn a medium-brown color.
Put in ginger-garlic paste and stir for 30 seconds. Then add the coriander, cumin, paprika, cayenne, hing and the salt.
Stir fry for another 30 seconds. Add the browned meat cubes and the meat juices. Now put in 1 tablespoon of the yogurt and stir and fry for about 30 seconds until yogurt is well blended. Add the remaining yogurt, a tablespoon at a time in the same way. Stir and fry for another 3-4 minutes.
Now add 1 1/4 cups water or stock (JH prefers stock) and bring the contents of the pot to a boil, scraping in all the browned spices on the sides and bottom of the pot.
Cover, turn heat to low and simmer for about an hour or until meat is tender. Every 10 minutes give the pot a good stir to prevent burning.
When the meat is tender, take off the lid, turn the fire to medium high and boil off some of the liquid, stirring all the time, until the sauce is thickened.
Sprinkle the garam masala and black pepper over the dish and mix them in just before you serve it.