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Feed your family for a fiver #1: Keema Curry

Wednesday, 6 July 2011  |  Admin

I picked up a fabulous wee book from a charity shop a few months back, the rather marvellous 'Madhur Jaffrey's Indian Cookery'. Worth getting a pre-loved copy from Amazon, you can pick them up for 1p (plus £2.80 postage) which is a bit of a bargain.
It's chock full of all the old classic indian dishes, including gorgeous naan and chapati recipes. Then I came upon this recipe for keema or 'mince and peas' as my husband calls it. I wasn't convinced before I made it as it doesn't sound terribly appetising but it's absolutely delicious. First time round I made it with lamb mince which was quite sweet and then the peas added more sweetness. Since then I've also made it with beef mince which makes it a great everyday curry, just lower the quantity of chilli if you're making it for children.

We usually eat it with home-made naan bread if I've had time to plan it or have made it from scratch. It freezes and reheats beautifully and makes a really tasty lazy dinner served with plain boiled rice.
I usually triple the quantity below and stash lots in the freezer.
Ingredients
4 tbs vegetable oil
75g onion finely chopped
6 - 7 medium cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
700g minced lamb or beef
2 cm fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 - 2 fresh hot green chillies, finely chopped (or to taste)
1 tsp ground coriander seeds
1tsp ground cumin seeds
1/8 - 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
275 ml water
200g frozen peas
4 - 6 heaped tbs chopped coriander
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp garam masala
1 1/2 tbs lemon juice
Method
1. Heat the oil to medium heat, add onions when hot.
2. Stir-fry them until lightly browned, add the garlic and stir-fry for another minute.
3. Add the mince, ginger, chillies, ground coriander seeds, cumin and cayenne pepper.
4. Stir and fry the meat mixture for 5 minutes, breaking up any lumps of mince as you do so.
5. Add 175 ml water and bring to the boil, cover and turn the heat to low, simmering for 30 minutes.
6.Add the peas, coriander, salt, garam masala lemon juice and the remaining water, stir and bring back to simmer for a further 10 mins or until peas are tender.
7. Taste seasonings and add more salt or lemon juice if necessary.
8. Like I said before, this freezes really well - the beauty of doing this is that because you let the curry cool down before freezing, the fat on top solidifies and can be scooped out and chucked away, making it much healthier too.