Sindhi Keema Kofta Curry - Meatball Curry

Thursday, December 10, 2015

A dish that transports me back in time... The keema kofta can be enjoyed as is with kachumber, a tomato-cucumber-onion relish, as an appetizer. Or can be dunked into this quintessentially Indian onion-tomato gravy for a hearty main course. Hmmm... maybe make a double batch of keema kofta for both?

Now we don't typically consume a lot of meat lately (greenhouse gases et al), moreover red meat, at that. But once in a while I will indulge myself, and bring everyone else at home on that same self indulgence boat, much to their delight, save my mostly-vegan daughter. Complain, she will, but eat it, she will too.

I find that goat's meat is more suited to the spices of Indian cuisine. It has a certain earthy / grassy aroma to it (must be grass-fed LOL) that isn't in turkey or pork. Whatever it is, it's a shoe in for this amazing curry. The koftas (ovoids of minced meat) are spiced with fresh cilantro, cumin and coriander. I couldn't resist sprinkling in a handful of hemp hearts and flax seeds, just because. And they swim in this thick onion and tomato gravy, soaking up some of the juicy sauce in their crevices.

Another Sindhi dish up my sleeve. I am truly relishing these moments I get to relive my childhood meals with the 'elders' who cook these dishes from recipes passed on by their grandmothers and mothers. Fortunately for me, these recipes come by way of aunts. And I am always grateful :)

500 grams minced goat meat
2 eggs
3 tbsp coriander leaves
2 green chilies, chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp red chili
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp salt
2-3 tbsp flour (or hemp hearts), to bind

4 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 bay leaves
2 cloves
1 black cardamom
1 large onion , chopped
4 green chilies, chopped
2" piece of ginger, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup tomato purée
2 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp coriander powder
Salt to taste
1 cup water

Cilantro, to garnish

Make the kofta:
1. Prepare a baking sheet by lining with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Place all kofta ingredients in a bowl.
3. Mix well, shape into spheres or ovoids, and place onto the baking sheet.
4. Bake for 25-30 minutes until just cooked through.

Make the curry while the koftas are cooking in the oven:
5. Heat the oil in a large pan, and when hot, place all the aromatics in the pan. 
6. Cook for 2-3 minutes on medium heat until fragrant.
7. Stir in the tomato purée and the other dry ingredients.
8. When oil starts to separate from the gravy, add the water and stir to make the sauce.
9. Season with salt to taste.
10. Let gravy simmer on low heat, 5-8 minutes, stirring now and then.

11. When koftas are done, carefully place then into the sauce.
12. Stir and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

Serve with a generous heap of cilantro, and enjoy with steaming rice or roti.

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