SUNDAY MUTTON CURRY – ROBIBARER MOTON ER TEL JHOL
As promised, I am back with another recipe. This is something I learned from my Mother-in-law after marriage!! I am married for the last 14 years and there were not a single sunday went without having our staple Motoner Tel Jhol and Rice, except occasions or when travelling.
I am a Bengali and so many who are bengalis know about Ghoti and Bangal concept. I belong from a Ghoti family in Central Kolkata whereas I married a pure Bangal man in South Kolkata. So our food taste, and meal choices are different mostly. But I adapted well as I believe I am an Earthian and can incorporate any taste and any dish cooked with love and warmth, except the insects and reptiles please. Before marriage, mutton on a sunday was usually a deep blackish brown curry with lots of oil that can be mopped out with rice and roti made especially well by my Aunt. And after marriage, it is more like a Tel Jhol, i.e., a curry which is runny and is a good mix of juices and oil floating on the surface. And the most interesting part is that to get this outcome you don’t need a lot of oil or spices at all. That’s the trick. And my Mother-in-law aces in it. Actually she is a great chef and can cook anything with very little spices and make it utterly delicious.
I tried and tried a lot, but it’s not always that I can perfect her style completely. I guess it’s her personal magic too. The aroma that comes out and wraps the whole house in, just when she opens the lid of the pressure cooker can make people salivating around. My husband is also a great chef. And I feel he can very beautifully replicate that same taste. But there are times I ace it too.
Sharing one such story rather recipe about it without any further delay.
Robibarer Moton er Tel Jhol aka Sunday Mutton Curry :
Mutton – 1kilo (curry cut and with fat)
Onions – 3 medium sized (two made into paste and 1 chopped)
Garlic and Ginger Paste – 2tbsp
Green Chillies Paste – 1 tbsp
Tomatoes Paste – Half of a big one
Turmeric Powder – 2tsp
Kashmiri Laal Mirch Powder – 2tsp
Dry Roasted Cumin Seeds and Grinded – 2tsp
Dry Roasted Dry Red Chillies and grinded – 1tsp
Ghee – 4 to 5 tbsp
Shahi Garam Masala Powder – 2tsp
Potatoes – 8 whole medium sized(peeled and cleaned)
Whole Garam Masala –
1 Bay Leaf
2 Green Cardamom
1 Big Cardamom
6 Black Peppercorns
1 Dry Red Chilly
1 stick Cinnamon
1 strand of Mace
Quarter teaspoon grinded Nutmeg
Mustard Oil – 1 cup and a bit more
Water as per consistency
Salt and Sugar as per seasoning.
- Usually mutton or goat pieces are not washed with water but if you clean them then towel dry them. That is a must.
- Take a deep bottom wok or your pressure cooker. Heat it. Add mustard oil and 2 tbsp ghee and heat them. Add sugar granules and stir. Now add all the whole garam masala in the oil. Wait till it starts releasing a beautiful aroma. Then add the chopped onions and fry them till golden.
- Now add the mutton pieces. Fry on high flame for 5 minutes. Then add the onion, ginger, garlic, tomatoes and green chillies paste and mix all well lowering the flame. Sprinkle a bit of water so that the spices don’t get burned.
- Fry them on high flame for 5 minutes. Now add turmeric, kashmiri laal, cumin, red chilly powders as mentioned above and mix them properly coating the mutton properly. Sprinkle some water to prevent burning. Now fry them on high flame stirring occasionally for the next 10 minutes.
- Add salt in it. Mix properly. Now lower the flame, slightly cover the utensil with a lid and let it brown itself on its own. It will go on for the next 40 to 45 minutes. Occasionally stir it and sprinkle water if needed or you see the bottom to get burnt.
- Meanwhile you can fry the turmeric-salt rubbed potatoes separately. I don’t do this always.
- When it’s almost 40 minutes, in a different pan, boil water. Now add this hot water into the mutton. Give it a good mix. Let it come to a boil. Check the seasoning. Add salt if required. And put the cooker on pressure. The quantity of water is like all the mutton and potatoes get almost completely submerged.
- Those who were cooking on a wok, transfer it to the cooker and then boil water in the wok and then add it to the pressure cooker. Those who did it in the cooker only, follow what I mentioned above.
- Now cook mutton as you generally cook as per your requirement. I cook in the Prestige Futura. After closing the lid, on high from when it starts hissing, it exactly needs 8 minutes to get cooked. In normal pressure cooker it takes 15 to 20 minutes, 5 whistles on high and then 12 minutes on low flame.
- I add the potatoes along with the mutton pieces to get boiled together. Usually I use Jyoti Potatoes which takes long to get boiled. If you are using a variety which takes lesser time, then once your mutton is cooked to almost tender, you can add the potatoes and give one whistle on high and one on low and turn the gas off and let it stand for some time and let the steam release on it own.
- When the steam is released, open the lid, sprinkle Shahi Garam Masala Powder along with ghee on it. Close the lid again. Let it stand for another 5 to 10 minutes.
- Serve it with Hot Rice and some green chillies and a kaffir lime wedge on the side.
So this is how I make it according to my Mother-in-law ‘s recipe. Its all about how much browning you do, how much spices and oil gets incorporated, the mutton pieces and the cooking time. I hope you find the post helpful. Will be back with more from Bengali cuisine.
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