This is kind of my default takeaway order but, especially as any order for free home delivery usually has to hit the £12-£14 mark, it's something of a rare treat. So I thought I'd make it at home.
I bought the eight lamb cutlets from United Meats, the yeast from Ayres and the rest from Khan's. The total cost was £10.50 (Khan's, with patrician disdain, threw in the pathetic bag of two chillies and the one tiny lime for nothing). The lamb cutlets cost £4. The same day, a rack of six cutlets from William Rose was £9 - three times as expensive. I know what you're going to say, but I like United Meats and their lamb is very tasty. Incidentally, they have a Southwark Scores on the Doors rating of 4/5. William Rose have 5/5 but their East Dulwich Grove branch has only 1/5. As does East Dulwich Deli.
If you removed the £3.96 cost of the pastes and spices, which will be in the cupboard for a goodly while now, and added in the price of the flour, yoghurt and eggs, the cost of this for two people would be almost exactly a tenner - much cheaper than picking up the phone and laying out £24 or so. Add £1 for DVD rental from Peckham library and you're hot to trot.
masala lamb cutlets
8-10 lamb cutlets
3 tbsps plain/greek yoghurt
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1 tbsp green chilli paste
1 tsp coriander powder
½ tsp ground cumin
a pinch of ground cloves
a handful of fresh coriander, chopped
½ lime, juiced
a pinch of salt
2 quarters of a lime
Mix everything together, except the lamb, oil and the second ½ lime, in a large bowl. Add the cutlets, making sure each one is well coated. Cover the bowl with cling film and leave in the fridge for 4-24 hours. Remove from the fridge an hour before cooking. Drizzle a little oil over the top of the cutlets and place them that side down on a smoking hot griddle/frying pan. Grill the cutlets for 3-4 minutes, drizzle some more oil over and flip. Cook for 3-4 minutes more. This should get you a charred exterior, but with a little pink in the middle still. You may prefer to cook them a minute or two longer. Serve with the lime quarters.
125g chana dal (dried yellow split peas)
2 dsps vegetable oil
1 dsp cumin seeds
½ onion, thinly sliced (original recipe specifies chopped - up to you)
2 whole green chillies, pricked with a knife
10ml piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into very thin strips
2 garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
1 tomato, chopped
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground coriander
salt + black pepper
a handful of coriander leaves, chopped
Put the lentils and water in a pan, stir well and bring to the boil. Skim off the froth that comes to the surface. Cover, reduce the heat and simmer for 35-40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender.
Remove the pan from the heat, drain off about 100ml of liquid - to use as necessary later - and beat with a wooden spoon to break down the lentils. Allow the mixture to cool.
Heat the oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin seeds, and fry for 30 seconds or so. Add the onion, chillies and ginger, and fry until golden brown.
Blitz the garlic and tomatoes in a processor (I've got one of those little mini ones). Add the purée to the pan, and stir. Add the turmeric, garam masala, coriander, and a splash of the dal liquid and stir again. Season to taste, cover with a lid, slightly askew, and simmer for about 15 minutes.
Add the cooked lentils to the sauce, and stir well, adding more dal liquid as necessary to loosen the mixture. Bring to a boil and check for seasoning. Stir in the chopped coriander just before serving.
stove top naan bread
This recipe is from the website of The Curry Guy (there's a video there of yer man making one, which I found useful) and makes, I guess, about 16 frying pan-sized breads. I made the full amount, cooked four naan's on the night and put the dough I didn't use in the freezer in individual portions (not sure how that will turn out, but I do it with pizza dough so...). Next time I'll make a third of the amount and see how that works out.
50g fresh yeast
2 tbsps sugar
a scant 1 tbsp salt
900g plain white flour
2 tbsps baking powder
300ml plain greek yoghurt
extra flour for dusting
3 tbsps melted butter
Heat the milk in a jug in the microwave or on the hob until it is hand hot. Crumble in the fresh yeast, sugar and salt and whisk it all together. Cover with a cloth and leave in a warm place for about 20 minutes. Now sift the flour into a large bowl and add the baking powder. Lightly beat the eggs and yoghurt and add to the flour.
When the yeast/milk mixture has bubbled up, pour it into the bowl and mix everything to combine. At this point it will be quite wet and sticky. Dump it onto a floured work surface and knead for about ten minutes, sprinkling more flour on the dough and your hands as necessary, until you have a soft and still slightly sticky dough ball.
Place the naan dough back in the bowl and allow to rise for at least one hour and up to 24 hours. The longer the better.
When you're ready, heat a dry frying pan over a high heat. Tear off a chunk of dough about the size of a tennis ball. Roll the dough out into a flat circular disc that is nice and thin and will fit into your pan. Place onto the hot pan.
The naan will begin to cook on the underside and then bubble on the top. Check the bottom regularly to ensure it doesn’t burn. If it begins to get too dark, turn the naan over to get a bit of colour on the top. Spoon a little melted butter over the bubbly top of the naan.
Each naan should take you no more than a couple of minutes to make. Keep them warm while making the next by wrapping loosely in tin foil and placing in a very low oven.