Saturday, July 12, 2008

Sinful Khatta Meat

I am not really known for my cooking skills. In fact, people are wary of my cooking, since they need to praise it (sometimes even if things don't taste good). The things I cook mostly involve about 30 minutes of cooking time. I firmly believe that, if something can not be cooked in 30 minutes, then it's not worth trying it.


Given choice, I would always avoid any of those meat recipes (especially Indian once). All of them consist elaborate steps and they take forever to complete. But when I tasted this Khatta meat, it made me want to try it myself. My father-in-law cooks this with such a finesse, that it's lip smacking taste lingers on for days together.

If you like your meat with a bit of zing, then this recipe is for you. It's sinfully dark (black with a hint of green) and just enough sour (to give you a kick). It doesn't need too many spices, just a bowl of good fresh meat and lots and lots of patience. So try this recipe, if you have at least four hours to spare.


1. Meat (cut into medium size pieces) : 1 kg
2. Onion (coarsely chopped) : 500 gm
3. mustard oil : 200 gm
4. bay leaves : 2-3
5. garlic (crushed) : 15-20 cloves
6. ginger (finely chopped) : two inch piece
7. coriander seed powder : 2 tablespoons
8. Asafoetida : two pinches
9. turmeric powder : 2 teaspoons
10. Aniseed (sounf) : 4 tablespoons
11. fenugreek seeds (roasted and crushed): 1 teaspoon
12. green cardamom (make a slit in each) : 8
13. aamchur : 8 tablespoons
14. Daikon Radish or mooli (take only white part and cut into 1 inch long pieces): 250 gm (this is not mandatory)
15. Salt as per taste

How to get going:

Take big enough pot (I use one big 24cm dia dutch oven), so that the meat can be mixed easily. It is very important to choose right pot. It must have heavy bottom since traditionally this meat is cooked for long hours on low flame. If your pot is not thick enough, it will start burning the meat towards midway.
Heat the pot and pour mustard oil. Once oil is hot enough (you should be able to see a sort of smoke rising), put onions and saute for about two minutes until onion turns transparent. Add meat pieces and salt (will need about two spoons) as per taste and mix it well.

Let it cook for about 60 minutes (yes, you got it right) on the lowest flame possible. You need to keep stirring it every five minutes or so. Add Daikon Radish pieces and let it all cook for another 30 minutes. You will need to stir the mixture once in a while to avoid burning. Once it starts boiling, the onions will slowly dissolve and meat pieces will release juice. The pieces are to cooked in their own juices. The sauce will be reduced until oil is released.

Keep track of the meat. Once you see oil separating in the mixture, check if the meat is cooked. If meat is not cooked then you will need to put meat pieces in pressure cooker to cook separately. Try not to add too much water as it will need more time to reduce it later. If meat is cooked too early while mixture it still watery, take out the meat pieces and then reduce your sauce. If you continue to cook "cooked" meat further it will break into very small pieces.
Once meat is cooked and oil is released, add the spices - coriander seed powder, asafoetida, turmeric, aniseed, fenugreek seeds, ginger, garlic and bay leaves. Mix the mixture until oil separates further. When it becomes sort of dry, add aamchur and cook for another 10 minutes.

Now the dry meat is ready. (You can eat this stuff as starter as well. It tastes yummy). Add water (and salt, if needed) as much required for curry and let it boil for about 10 minutes.
Tadah, your mouthwatering khatta meat is ready. Enjoy it with plain rice.


Alex Schroeder said...

Well, I don't eat meat if I can avoid it. But I definitely agree with you opinion that all worthwhile cooking should be done in 30 minutes or less. A very sane position.

Alex Schroeder said...

And via Greywulf, I have a Chocolate Cake in 5 Minutes for you that I have not tried because I don't have a Microwave.