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Avani's lamb curry

Begin this recipe a day ahead to marinate the lamb.

You'll need

14 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped 3 tsp finely grated ginger 2 kg boneless lamb neck forequarter, cut into 3cm cubes 2 tbsp plain yoghurt 140 ml vegetable oil 4 Spanish onions, thinly sliced 2 tbsp white poppy seeds (see note) 1½ tbsp each white sesame seeds and black cumin seeds (see note) 1 tbsp each cumin seeds and coriander seeds 4 cloves Seeds from 2 black cardamom pods 6 star anise 5 fresh bay leaves 100 gm (1 cup) coarsely grated fresh coconut, plus extra to serve 1 piece of cassia bark 1 tbsp each chilli powder and sweet paprika 1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock To serve: coriander leaves and steamed basmati rice   Pomegranate raita 500 ml (2 cups) plain yoghurt Seeds of 1 pomegranate 2 spring onions, thinly sliced 1½ tsp finely chopped ginger 3 long green chillies, finely chopped 1 tsp ground cumin 2 tbsp coarsely chopped coriander To taste: lemon juice


  • 01
  • Pound 4 garlic cloves and ginger with a mortar and pestle to a smooth paste (adding a little water to loosen if necessary), then combine with lamb and yoghurt in a non-reactive container, season to taste and mix well. Cover and refrigerate to marinate (overnight).
  • 02
  • Heat 80ml oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add onion and sauté until caramelised (10-12 minutes). Set aside.
  • 03
  • Dry-roast the seeds, cloves, cardamom, 4 star anise and 3 bay leaves until fragrant (3-4 minutes). Transfer to a blender, add reserved onion, coconut and remaining garlic and process to a smooth paste, then set aside.
  • 04
  • Heat remaining oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, add lamb in batches and brown all over (3-5 minutes), then set aside. Add cassia bark, remaining star anise and remaining bay leaves to pan and stir-fry until fragrant (30 seconds), then add the spice paste and stir-fry until oil splits (3-5 minutes). Mix in chilli powder and paprika, then add lamb and stock, bring to a simmer and reduce heat to low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until lamb is very tender and sauce is thick (2-2¼ hours).
  • 05
  • Meanwhile, for pomegranate raita, combine ingredients in a bowl, cover and refrigerate until required.
  • 06
  • Season the curry to taste with sea salt, scatter with coconut and coriander, then serve hot with steamed basmati rice and pomegranate raita

Note White poppy seeds and black cumin seeds (or nigella seeds) are available from Indian grocers and Herbies Spices.

Watch Adam D'Sylva from Melbourne's Tonka restaurant make the lamb curry recipe live from the Harvey Norman Gourmet Institute Event on July 15 at Harvey Norman Chadstone in an exclusive video on the Harvey Norman website

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people

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