INDIAN FAMILY MEAL RECIPE SUITABLE FOR 1-3 YEAR OLDS
This curry was a bit of an experiment gone right! I was getting ready to cook one of my ‘bog-standard’ lamb curries and as I opened the cupboard to pull out my tinned tomatoes, some new ingredients were staring at me in the face and shone out like they had a halo around them. I think my subconscious was begging me to try something new!
I find that even for me, it is very easy to slip into the habit of cooking the same things again and again. Dinners can almost become formulaic. You find a recipe the family enjoys, you know how long it will take to prepare, and you stick to it. But I’m glad I didn’t ignore the halos because this is a fab curry!
It is also one of my favourite types of no-hassle curries as the meat ‘marinates on-the-job’ as I like to call it. The acid in the fresh lemon juice acts as a meat tenderiser and the delicious aromatic spices add masses of flavour to the meat, all whilst the meat is cooking. The best part is the lamb still continues to marinate even after the curry has finished cooking. The longer it sits, the better it tastes!
SuperFoods included – olive oil, red onion, garlic, ginger, lemon, green beans
SuperSpices included – cloves, cardamom, turmeric, coriander
This is an iron-rich and protein-rich curry, perfect for growing active children.
Total cooking and preparation time: 2 hours
Serves a family of 4
50ml (2fl oz/ ¼ cup) olive oil
1 medium red onion – peeled, chopped
4 whole cloves
2 whole cardamom pods – black
725g (1lb 10 oz) lamb – boneless, cubed, fat trimmed
3 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp ground turmeric
Half a lemon – squeezed, no seeds
200ml (7fl oz/ just under 1 cup) water
2 tsp dark soy sauce
1 ½ tsp ground coriander
1 tsp dark soft brown sugar
120g (1 ½ cup) green beans – frozen, washed
Salt/ red chilli powder to taste (optional)
Heat the oil in a pot on medium heat and add the onion, cloves, cardamom and layer the lamb cubes over the top.
Then throw in the garlic, ginger, and sprinkle the turmeric and fresh lemon evenly over the lamb. Cover and cook on low heat.
After 10 mins stir, pour in the water and leave to simmer for 1h 45 mins. If at any point the curry looks a little dry, add some extra water.
By the end of the cooking time the lamb will be beautifully tender and when it is, add the soy sauce, coriander, brown sugar and stir delicately to avoid breaking the meat chunks. Switch off the heat.
Steam the green beans in a steamer or in the microwave for 2 mins to preserve the nutrients. To steam in the microwave place the green beans in a microwavable dish, add 1 tablespoon of water, cover (leaving a small vent) and cook on full power.
Add the freshly steamed green beans to the curry, and stir coating them in the delicious spices.
Remove a serving for your little one ensuring there are NO cloves or cardamom pods included and set aside.
Add salt and chilli powder to the main pot and stir (if you wish).
Tastes delicious served with egg fried rice.
This curry is meant to be a little dry but you can vary it if you like. Try adding a little coconut milk to create a more saucy curry, or try substituting the lemon for lime instead.
You can find more tasty recipes in Easy Indian SuperMeals for Babies, Toddlers and the Family. Available to buy now from Amazon.