Tag Archives: Lamb & Other Meats

Lamb Keema Matar: Minced Meat Curry with Peas

keema matar masala, ground meat curry, ground lamb curry, cheap curry, quick curry

Ground Lamb and Peas Curry

Keema Matar (ground meat and peas curry) is one of my favorite Indian dishes.  Not only is it incredibly comforting but it’s also really quick and inexpensive to prepare.  When I think I have nothing in the house to make for dinner, I almost always end up making Keema Masala.  I mean, who doesn’t have a pound or two of ground meat stuffed some place in their freezer?

I used lamb.  Traditionally, I believe, ground mutton or lamb is used; but you could also use ground beef, turkey, chicken or even venison to make this curry. This is really a versatile recipe, as most Indian recipes are, and the leftovers can be transformed into many different dishes. Continue reading

Roasted Pumpkin, Sausage and Sage Risotto with Gruyere

I’ve been a little preoccupied lately.

I have no excuses, and can’t even give a good reason why my blog hasn’t been regularly updated.  After all, I have been cooking.

I guess I just needed a break.

Now that the weather is changing, my yard has been (partially) cleaned up, and there’s a slight chill in the air…I can officially say the baking/creating/cooking season has begun!

I kicked off the season yesterday by making a Roasted Pumpkin and Sausage Risotto with Gruyere and Sage, and it was fabulous!

Roasted Pumpkin and Sausage Risotto with Gruyere and Sage

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Mini Turkey Lasagnas & the Woes of Summertime

Summer has never been my favorite time of year (except for summer of 2008—yeah that was fun!).  Because I have crazy sensitive skin, summertime has become synonymous with sunburn. If that’s not bad enough…I’m allergic to sunscreen.

This year–in particular–has been especially difficult because of the high temperatures and terrible humidity. Not to mention the drought.  Okay…I mentioned it.  We need rain!

In my opinion, the only thing good about summer (as an adult) is the vegetables.  I love being able to just step outside my home and come back inside–into the air conditioning–with a basket full of peppers, tomatoes, potatoes and herbs.

Some vegetables from the garden

I am especially proud of my shallots.   I am an amazing shallot grower, apparently.

beautiful shallots

In fact, I’m so proud of my shallots, I tear up.  Literally.  They make me cry!  I’m not sure what the reason is, but these tiny, purple-hued beauties make me bawl worse than a baby!

Their crying power is way stronger than that of any onion.  But, they taste incredible; so the crying is worth it.  I guess.

When I woke up today, I planned on going to the gym.  But those plans quickly changed.  The weather report said it was 71degrees outside, and I knew I better take advantage of that!  I decided to clean up my gardens and plant a few more cone flowers, mums and burning bushes.

When I finished, I came back inside with all this:

 

and had Lasagna on my mind.

You see, I love lasagna.  A lot.  In fact, I can’t be trusted around it.

Knowing this, I decided to make mini lasagnas instead of a giant pan full.  They’d be perfectly portioned and I wouldn’t have to worry about eating more than my share.

Instead of noodles, I used wonton wrappers.  This isn’t anything new, and I’ve seen tons of stuff made with the little dough squares–from raviolis to tacos…to pie crusts!  How versatile! 

I figured I’d use the wonton wrappers instead of traditional pasta for three reasons.

  1. There is no need to pre-cook the wonton wrappers, so I won’t burn my fingers.  I always burn my fingers on lasagna noodles!
  2. The wrappers fit perfectly into a muffin pan.
  3. Wonton wrappers are relatively low calorie.  They ring in at 20 calories/each.

I also decided to use ground turkey meat.  I cooked the meat with finely diced green bell peppers, basil, oregano, lots of garlic, and a bunch of finely diced mushrooms.

Because I’ve been scaling back the amount of meat I cook with, adding the mushrooms allowed me to use less turkey and also stretched the meat into multiple meals–instead of just the one.  In fact, I have made these lasagnas twice this week, and still have over half a pound of the cooked meat left over (frozen, for some other time).

I turned the tomatoes, garlic and basil into a simple–and flavorful–sauce (no real recipe, sorry!  I just tossed stuff together, blended it up and then let it cook for about 10 min. to reduce).

And made a mixture of basil, cottage cheese (3/4 c.) and Parmesan cheese (1/4 c.).  [Enough for 6 mini lasagnas]

I then layered everything together in a muffin pan which I sprayed with a little olive oil.  I started with a wonton wrapper, added a little sauce, cottage cheese mixture, meat, more sauce…and repeat.  I then topped the mini lasagnas with a little shredded cheese and some dried herbs.

The lasagnas were popped into a 375 degree F oven, and were baked for about 20 minutes–or until they started to get a little browned.

I let them cool in the pan for a good 10 minutes before I popped them out–simply using a fork.

 

Each mini lasagna was a little over 150 calories, so I had two.  And I’ve got to tell you…I enjoyed every single one of those delicious calories!

I plan on making another batch this weekend, but instead of baking them, I’m going to freeze them.  If all works out, I think they’d be a great way to preserve my garden’s bounty! :)

Lamb Curry with Apricots and Almonds

I love lamb.  Although we don’t eat it often, it probably is my favorite meat–if it’s cooked right.

Lamb is one of those meats that can be a little tricky to cook.  Sure, you can toss it in a pressure cooker and cook it that way…but I just don’t think the taste is the same.  If you really want to cook lamb…and have it taste amazing…you have to cook it slow.

When I make a lamb curry I always cook it for at least 2 hours–stirring ever half hour.  It’s time consuming…yes; but because I only make lamb for special occasions, I want it to have the best flavor possible.

This was the first time I experimented adding vinegar, nuts and dried fruits to my lamb curry.  I usually make a Rogan Josh (which I have to say is the absolute best curry I make.   I’ve kept the recipe secret…so far.  But, I’m sure it’ll show up on here someday!), so this curry was a little out of my comfort zone.

I got the inspiration for this curry from the book I’m reading: “The Feast of Roses” by Indu Sundaresan.  It’s the love story of Mughal Emperor Jahangir and Nur Jahan (Mehrunnisa).  I find the story fascinating…and reading about all the rich, Mughal dishes makes my mouth water!

I wanted to use some of the ingredients I was reading about; and turn them into a fabulous curry.

Lamb Curry with Apricots and Almonds

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