My friend D is a star in her own rights. She dances (professionally), sings, draws, paints, acts, runs and in between doing all these things she studies and researches for her PhD course in one of the best colleges of London. Needless to say, back in our days, she was the most popular girl in school. Unlike most of my friends who are vastly different from me, she is someone with whom I have always connected on similar interests. We were cricket-worms (if there is such a word. Oh well, I know there isn’t.), we doted on the same songs (20 years on, we still do), we wrote plays together, rowed together, hogged together and prepared charts for house competition projects together. We used to have identical handwritings as well, Goddamnit!
D and I met last around 6 years back at our friend R’s wedding. Yeah, long time I know. And then D started city-hopping and country-hopping and I went to journalism school. My first job took me to Delhi at a time when D had already left Delhi for London. Our friendship had gradually boiled down to “liking” each others’ pictures and statuses on Facebook. And then happened the inevitable. BBC started airing its new Sherlock series and with that in our lives stepped Benedict Cumberbatch. Now as I already said, D and I have extremely similar interests and choices, and so in no time we started drooling over Mr C. Nestled in our own cities, we started watching Sherlock episodes on loop till we memorised them almost, we ransacked Google to find out tidbits about the man we were head over heels in love with, and we started sharing photographs and articles with each other. D, by dint of living in the same city as BenC, has also managed to meet the illustrious personality in question. Can you beat that?
When D came down to India last December, we finally decided to meet. D loves to eat and that meant complete licence for me for try out some unique flavour combinations. Now I’ve been eyeing Priyadarshini’s Aamsol Mutton for quite sometime and absolutely lapped up the opportunity to make the same. I made it late at night the day before D was supposed to come, and before I went to sleep that night, a good quarter of it was in the cosy comforts of my tummy. This mutton dish redefines tangy, so if you like your food hot and sour, this dish, my friend, is meant for you! And it doesn’t even use any oil. It has indulgence written all over it!
Recipe adapted from Priyadarshini’s Let’s Talk Food
Mutton: 500 gm
Cumin seeds: 1/2 tsp
Peppercorns: 1.5 tsp
Dry red chillies: 4
Green chillies: 4
Onions, thinly sliced: 3
Garlic cloves: 6-7
Salt, to taste
Sugar. to taste
Tamarind pulp: 1.5 tbsp (diluted in 1/2 cup water)
1. Heat the pressure cooker till smoking point. Once it is hot, reduce heat and add he cumin and peppercorns. Lightly roast them for around 30 second.
2. Once the cumin releases aroma, add the dry red chillies and green chillies and stir for another 30-40 seconds.
3. Add the onions and garlic cloves and stir until onions release water. Add tamarind pulp and kokum/amsol. Stir well for 2-3 minutes.
4. Add the mutton pieces and fry for about 5-7 minutes. Also add salt, sugar and about 2 cups of water.
5. Pressure cook on high flame for 2 whistles and then reduce flame and continue pressure cooking for 15 minutes. Turn off gas and let the steam release on its own. Let the meat rest for 10 minutes.
6. Serve hot with steamed rice.