Lampries Curry

(Photo by Emily Barney/Flickr)


500 g/1 lb lean stewing beef
500 g/1 lb boneless mutton or lamb
5 teaspoons salt
10 cardamom pods, bruised
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
500 g/1 lb chicken thighs and drumsticks
500 g/1 lb pork belly (not too lean, not too fatty)
1 tablespoon ghee
2 tablespoons oil
4 large onions, finely chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger
3 sprigs fresh curry leaves
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
4 tablespoons Ceylon curry powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons chilli powder
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
6 strips pandan leaf, fresh or dried
2 stems lemon grass
or 4 strips lemon rind
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 x 400 ml/14 fl oz cans coconut milk


Put beef and mutton in a large saucepan with cold water to cover. Add 2 teaspoons of the salt, cardamom pods and black peppercorns. Bring to the boil, cover pan and simmer slowly for half an hour. Add chicken and simmer a further 15 minutes. Remove from heat, cool slightly, then strain and reserve stock for boiling the rice. When cool enough to handle, cut the parboiled meats into very small dice. Cut pork also into small dice.

In a large, heavy-based saucepan heat ghee and oil and gently fry onion, garlic, ginger and curry leaves until onion is soft and golden. Add fenugreek seeds and fry for 1 minute, then add curry powder, turmeric, chilli powder, cinnamon stick, cardamom, pandan leaf and lemon grass or rind. Add remaining 3 teaspoons salt, lemon juice and diced pork.

Dilute one can of coconut milk with an equal amount of water and add to pan, stirring. Cover and cook on low heat for 30 minutes, stirring now and then, until pork is half tender. Add parboiled meats and half the second can of coconut milk, and simmer uncovered for about an hour or until meat is tender and gravy very thick. (Reserve remaining coconut milk for spooning over the parcels of rice and curry.)


Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)