Showing posts with label South Indian Cuisine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label South Indian Cuisine. Show all posts

Monday, July 3, 2017

Gongkura Lamb Curry

Gongkura greens are edible Sorrel leaves most popularly used in South Indian Cuisine especially in the states of Andra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu in India. It has a distinctive tangy taste and is one of the main ingredients of Andhra Cuisine. It is also a wonderful source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that are beneficial to your overall health. 

I grew up eating a variety of dishes made with gongkura and I still cherish those memories. Here in Canada finding gongkura is like finding a lost treasure. When you find it you consider yourself lucky so you grab it at once with out thinking. I love all the dishes made with gongkura and I intend to post all the recipes here as and when I keep making them from time to time. I want to grow them in my backyard so I can cook them whenever I want to atleast during the summer months. 

The Gongkura lamb curry is made with lamb meat and bones. Using lamb meat from the rib area (sar seena) makes the best tasting Gongkura curry indeed! I was lucky to find the gonkura leaves in a store in Toronto and got to make it and enjoy it after so many years - with steamed rice it was insanely delicious!!

I made this in my instant pot and it was so convenient and quick. 

Here's the Recipe:

l lb Lamb bones with meat (from the rib cage and neck)
2 bunches  Sorrel leaves 
1 tbs  Channa dal 
1 tbs Ginger garlic paste 
3 - 4 Garlic cloves 
2 large onions
1 medium ripe tomato
2 tsp Turmeric 
1 tsp Kashmiri chilli pepper 
1 tsp Coriander powder 
1 tsp Garam Masala Powder 
4 - 6 Green chillies 
1small dried red chilli deseeded
2 tbs Oil 
Ghee - 1 tbs
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds 
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds 
 Fresh Curry leaves -  a few 


1. Clean and wash the lamb rib & neck pieces with the bones and keep aside. 

2. Peel and thinly slice the onions. Wash the channa dal. Pluck the gongkura leaves only (no stems), wash, drain, chop them and set aside. 

3. Add 2 tbs of oil to the instant pot in the sauté mode on high followed by half of the sliced onions and fry them till soft and translucent. 

4. Add 1 heaped tbs ginger garlic paste, 1 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp kashmiri chilli powder and 1 tsp coriander powder, give it a stir then add the lamb pieces and roast them well in the onion masala. Add 3 whole green chillies, 1 tbs channa dal and 1/2 cup water then close the lid. Cancel the sauté mode and pressure cook on high for 15 minutes till tender. The valve should be turned to sealing position after closing the lid. When done let the steam vent out on its own. 

5. When all the steam is released on its own, switch off the instant pot, open the lid and empty the contents of the instant pot in a dish. Lightly rinse the pot inside with a little water which you can add to the lamb curry. Set aside.

6. Switch the instant pot on high in the sauté mode again.  Heat one tbs of oil and ghee, sprinkle the mustard seeds and let them crackle, add the deseeded dried red chilli, cumin seeds, then crushed garlic cloves with their peel and curry leaves followed immediately by the chopped gongkura leaves. Fry them well then add 1/2 cup water and simmer for 5 minutes.

7. Blend the gongkura with the other ingredients using an electric hand blender. Now throw in the remaining 3 whole green chillies and simmer on low sauté mode for 5 minutes. If we added them before the curry would be really spicy when blended.

8. Finally add the cooked lamb curry to the instant pot with the gongkura curry, sprinkle some garam masala powder, chopped cilantro, a little water and simmer on low for 5 minutes. The gongkura lamb curry is now ready to enjoy with steamed jasmine rice and ghee. So yummy and delicious!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Crab Masala

Crabs - 2 big size (dungeness crabs)
Vegetable oil - 1 cup
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric - 1/2 tspn
Red chilly powder - 1 tsp
Water- 1 cup
Lemon juice- 2 tsp
Salt as per taste

For the Dry Masala:
Coriander seeds- 2 tbs
Cumin seeds - 1 1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds-1tspn
Poppy seeds(white) - 2 tsp
Black pepper - 1tsp
Cloves - 10
Green cardamoms - 6 - 8
Dark Cinnamon - 2 inch stick

For the Wet Masala:
Fresh coconut sliced - 1 cup
Dried red chillies- 4-6 long
Curry leaves - 1/2 cup
Onions - 1 large
Garlic - 6 medium size cloves
Tomatoes - 2 large
Green chillies- 4-6
Cilantro - 1/2 a cup

How to make the Dry and Wet Masalas:
1. Roast the dry masala ingredients on a tawa (skillet) in a teaspoon of vegetable oil and then grind them fine. 
2. Add another tsp of oil to the tawa and fry the coconut slices with a few curry leaves. Drain, remove, then fry the poppy seeds carefully so as not to burn them, remove when they slightly change color.  Drain on paper towel and set aside. 
3. Now add a little more oil and fry the sliced onions with the dried red chillies and a few curry leaves. When the onions turn translucent, stir in the pounded garlic and slit green chillies and once you you get the aroma of garlic add the tomatoes, stir in a bit and then remove everything. 
4.Using a wet grinder dry grind the coconut slices first, then add a little water pulse one or two times before adding the other roasted wet masala ingredients to it along with the cilantro to make the wet masala paste.

1. Remove the shell from the crab, cut the legs at the joints, scrape the tiny hair on either side of the crab legs, clean well, rinse and set aside.
2. Pound the legs a bit or slit them with a knife carefully. This is done to make the masala seep inside when it is being cooked which makes the meat flavorful and juicy.
3. Heat the vegetable oil in a pot. Add mustard seeds, when they crackle add curry leaves followed by the wet masala paste, turmeric, red chilly powder and salt. Stir to roast the masala in the oil for sometime. 
4. Now add the dry ground masala and mix well. 
5. Throw in the crab and  turn over from time to time to coat with the masala well.
6. Pour 1 cup of water around the sides of the pot to wash away the masala sticking to the sides., mix well and let it simmer for 10 - 15 mins till you get a whiff of the aroma. At this stage the masala thickens and the oil rises to the top which means the crab is ready.
7.  Pour a little more water on the sides,  mix well so that it is neither too dry nor too runny but just right. Sprinkle a little lemon juice and adjust the salt to taste. Garnish with chopped coriander and lemon wedges. Serve hot with boiled rice or hoppers. Enjoy.


1. Toasting the coconut pieces evenly in the oil and grinding them and the whole spices slightly coarse gives a good texture as well as added flavour and taste. 
2. Remove the seeds from the tomatoes before roasting them.  Use vine or plum tomatoes for their tangy sweet taste.
3. Clean the crab legs by scraping the sides which have dark spots and a thin film of hair. 
4. Cut the body of the crab into 4 quarters and not more. With smaller pieces there's hardly any flesh left when cooked. 
5. For those who like it less hot, reduce the quantity of chillies or you may use whole green chillies instead of grinding them with the masala.
 6. Follow the exact proportions and instructions as given in the recipe and you will be really happy with the outcome. I have been making this all my life and everybody just loves it.