Tomato Lamb Curry

With Ramadan over and Eid Festivities happening, I wanted to share my favorite Eid recipes with everyone. Eid really is a special time of the year for me. Starting the day with morning prayers, having special Eid breakfast and then heading out to meet friends and family for the rest of the day. It really is a celebration of getting together with your loved ones and having tons of good food after a long month of fasting. Today I will share my Eid special recipe for slow-cooked Tomato Lamb Curry.

Although slow cooking big meats like lamb may seem tricky, this is probably the simplest curry I have ever cooked in my life. It took me only 15 minutes to actually get everything in the pot and then I just left it to simmer and cook for 2.5 – 3 hours. These recipes are perfect for big dinners, especially cause they require minimum care but deliver flavors which are nothing but spectacular.

This year I decided to cook a tomato based Persian Lamb Curry inspired from my favorite Persian food author, Sabrina Ghayour. This is my take on her Lamb Tagine. This particular curry is tomato based, mainly using soft meats like shank and shoulder to give it the real depth of flavor. Besides the tomato and lamb, the next big ingredient which really takes this dish to another level is the balsamic vinegar syrup. Balsamic Vinegar syrup is definitely something new to me, especially because it isn’t a common ingredient used in Southeast Asian cooking. This vinegar syrup changed the dynamic of flavors and is really what helped cut through the richness of the lamb and balance with the tartness of the tomatoes. 

I paired my Tomato Lamb Curry with some aromatic Pulao, and I will surely put up the recipe for that soon. I hope you guys will try this super simple and delicious recipe and Make It Your way

INGREDIENTS
3 tbsps of Olive Oil
3 tsp Ground Cumin
2 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tsp Cinnamon Powder
5 Lamb Shanks 
2 tbsp regular Table Salt
2 tsp black pepper
3-4 small bay leaves (or 2 large)
3-4 sprigs of thyme
1 can of chopped tomatoes (28oz)
4 fresh large tomatoes chopped 
4 tbsps of Balsamic vinegar syrup
3-4 cloves of garlic roughly chopped
2 cups of sliced red onions

STEPS
In a pot place 4 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Once the oil is heated, add in the onions and cook until they caramelize into a light brown color. At this point, add all your dry ingredients (turmeric, cumin, cinnamon) and mix with onions. Add a splash of water to avoid the spices from burning. Once completed, add in your shanks and fry on all sides for about 5 minutes. This process helps to seal the meat and get some caramelization, so make sure the heat touches all parts of the lamb.

Now season with salt, pepper, bay leaf, thyme and give it a good mix. Next, add in the tomatoes (fresh and canned), garlic, balsamic syrup and again give it a good mix. At this point, add enough water to cover the top of the meat and let it simmer over medium-low heat for 2.5 to 3 hours. Keep going back and giving it a mix every 30 minutes. 

After 3 hours, the meat should just be falling off the bone. Taste your gravy and make sure there is a proper balance of salt and tartness from the vinegar. Once you are happy with the flavors, sprinkle some thyme leaves on top and serve with aromatic Pulao. 

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