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Mutton Beliram - History revisited

Gosht Beliram or Mutton Beliram, is a delicacy from the past, named after a historical story about a chef Beliram, who was part of Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s kitchen and when he prepared this flavour packed mutton dish, Maharaja Ranjit Singh named this dish after him. Now we cannot verify the authenticity of the story, like most mythological or historical story, but this recipe in more recent time travelled to west punjab (now Pakistan) and resurfaced when Ustaaj Beliram or Lala Beliram as he was called in Lahore, who made this curry and sold it from his redi / push cart it would get sold in less than 15-20 minutes. Thus the name Mutton Beliram or Gosht Beliram. Fascinating history !!

Taking inspiration from the story I recreated this mutton dish which is a combination of flavour profiles of sweetness of the onions, freshness of ginger, spice of the green chillies, sourness of the curd and lots of coriander in all form, powder in the marinate, coarsely grained in the cook and fresh in the garnish cooked slowly on ghee and best served with some paratha or naan.

Ingredients - For Marinating Mutton

1 kg Mutton

2 medium sliced Onion

1 tbsp Ginger-Garlic-Green Chilli Paste

Whole Spices : 1 Bay Leaf; 2 cloves, 1 cardamom, 6 Black Peppercorns

1½ -2 cups Curd

2 tsp Coriander Powder

½ tsp Turmeric Powder

1 tsp Degi Red Chilli Powder

Salt to taste

For Marinating Mutton

In a bowl add mutton, onion, ginger-garlic-green chilli paste, green chilli, bay leaf, black pepper cons, cloves, black cardamom, curd, coriander powder, turmeric powder, degi red chilli powder, salt and mix everything properly then keep aside for at least 1 hour or over night in the fridge.

For Gravy

2 tbsp Ghee

1 inch Ginger - finely chopped

2 fresh Green Chilli - roughly chopped

2 medium Onion - chopped

1 tsp Cumin Seeds

2 tbsp Coriander Seeds - crushed

Water / Stock

2 tbsp Coriander Leaves - chopped

Salt to taste

For Gravy

In a pan / kadahi, heat ghee and add cumin seeds, ginger, green chilli, onion and saute it properly until golden brown. Add the marinated mutton saute it properly until the mixture starts to thickens and the oil starts separating.Then add salt, crushed coriander seeds and saute for a minute then add water/mutton stock and cover it with a lid and cook until the mutton is completely cooked (stir it in between). You can also ease it out by putting it back in a pressure cooker to fast track the cook.

Remove the lid then add chopped fresh coriander leaves and stir it once.

Switch off the flames and serve hot in a serving plate then garnish with ginger julienne and coriander leaves.

Please leave your comments if you like it and follow me on Instagram @arghaya_photography

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