Beautifully spiced lamb slowly cooked for a full-flavour curry. Have fun making your own flatbreads on the hob.
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 green bird's-eye chilli
2 garlic cloves
1.5cm/¾in piece fresh root ginger, peeled
1 onion, thinly sliced
12 curry leaves
3 cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
1 x 400g/14oz tin chopped tomatoes
200ml/7fl oz beef stock
2 tsp tamarind juice
2 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper
1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
1 tbsp chopped fresh mint
400g/14oz basmati rice
Put all of the curry powder ingredients into a spice grinder and grind to a fine powder. (Alternatively use a pestle and mortar.)
For the lamb madras, season the lamb shanks all over with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat the vegetable oil in a large non-stick casserole pan and sear the lamb shanks for 1-2 minutes on all sides, or until golden-brown all over. Remove the lamb shanks from the pan and set aside.
In a small food processor, blend the chilli, garlic and ginger to a paste, adding a splash of water if necessary.
Place the pan used to cook the lamb back over a high heat and add the onion. Fry for 2-3 minutes, or until softened and starting to colour.
Add 2½ tablespoons of the curry powder to the pot along with the garlic, chilli and ginger paste, curry leaves, cardamom and bay leaves. Stir well.
Return the lamb shanks to the pan and cover with the chopped tomatoes, beef stock and tamarind juice. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover the pan with a lid and simmer over a low heat for two hours, or until the lamb is very tender. Finish with the lemon juice.
Place the rice in a saucepan and add 600ml/20fl oz water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and cover with a lid. Cook for 15 minutes then turn off the heat, leaving the lid on, and leave to steam for another 15 minutes (or cook according to packet instructions).
For the flatbreads, mix the flour and salt with two tablespoons of water in a bowl to create a soft dough, adding extra water if necessary.
Knead the dough using floured hands and roll out on a floured work surface until thin. Cut into rustic shapes and then pan fry in a hot pan brushed with oil for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until golden-brown.
Just before serving, stir the coriander and mint into the curry and heat for another minute.
To serve, place the curry in a shallow serving bowls and serve the rice and flatbreads on the side.
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James Martin presents, with guest chefs Vivek Singh and Hélène Darroze.