September 18, 2013
Cinnamon Scented Goat Curry
BigJ's family come from good farming stock
His Mother's family ran the town dairy, his uncles grew wheat, and raised the odd animal or two for table. His step dad's side were sheep people and even now his step dad has a miniature shearing shed with working shears in his suburban backyard.
One of the benefits of family farms is that everyone chips in when there's work to be done- shearing, grading...and butchering. The family often dispatched a job lot of beasties for the freezer and when we were married we often came into a share of the goodies for ourselves.
Farm meat tastes very different from supermarket meat. The sheep were often a bit older than those typically sold on polystyrene trays, and has a stronger flavour that we really love. If we manage to get up in time on the weekend we can usually grab a roast of Mutton or Hogget at the Farmers Market, or if we don't get our fix there we can get some wonderful young goat meat from the butcher instead as it's so similar and one we eat quite often as well.
Young goat meat is lovely, not stringy or gamey at all. I did a taste test with some friends where I cooked a leg of lamb and a leg of goat side by side, served them up identical slices and asked them which they liked more. Every single one picked the goat because it was just so tasty, and every single one was surprised! I wasn't.
Although young goat can be cooked exactly the same as lamb nowadays, and doesn't require long slow cooking, I just happened to want to make a warming curry for the wet Spring weather we are currently enjoying. I've taken the recipe from The Curry Cookbook- one of those compilation books that doesn't give individual authors but is a mix of the publishers favourites I guess :)
Cinnamon Scented Goat Curry
with my variations
1 kg Goat or Lamb pieces- on the bone adds more flavour
4 tbs Red Wine Vinegar
1 tsp Salt
4 tablespoons of Oil
couple of Cinnamon Sticks
5 Cardamom Pods- bruised
1 large Onion- finely chopped
2 tsp Ginger puree
2 tsp Garlic puree
2 tsp ground Cumin
1 tsp gound Turmeric
1 tsp Chilli Powder
tin of chopped Tomatoes
about 2/3 cup of Water
1 1/2 dried Fenugreek leaves (from Indian supermarkets)
1/2 bunch of finely chopped spinach
Pop the meat into a non-reactive bowl and rub in the vinegar and salt. Let it sit for half an hour or so
I always like to brown the meat off before braising as I think it adds a better depth of flavour, but you can skip this step if you can't be bothered :)
Heat a couple of tablespoons of oil on low heat, then add the cinnamon, cardamom and cloves. Let the sizzle away for 30 seconds and let the lovely spicy fragrance fill the air
Bring the heat up to medium, then add in the onions and cook until the onion is soft
Add in the ginger and garlic puree and cook off for another couple of minutes, then put in the cumin, turmeric and chilli powder and stir for another minute or so. This will toast off the spices and help release their full flavour potential
Pop in the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes are more of a paste like consistency and the oil separates from the paste a little
Now add in the meat, fenugreek leaves and water
Bring up to a simmer
Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 45 mins or so until the meat is nice and tender
Stir in the chopped spinach and let the residual heat wilt it down into the sauce
I served my curry on some steamed rice with a side of Masala Aloo- yummy spiced potatoes
Wonderful warm spices, earthy and sweet, tender meat all wrapped up in a steamy fragrant sauce...Perfect for rainy nights and thunderstorms
So Dear Readers, do you come from the Town or Country, and have you ever eaten goat?