Today’s Meatball curry is an classic Anglo Indian food recipe that I learnt from my friend’s mother many years ago.
Vizag has a large Anglo Indian community and their contribution to our educational institutions is significant. Many Anglo Indians teachers taught me during my initial school going years and also have few close friends. One of my Anglo Indian friend’s mother was a seamstress par excellence who sewed the most elegant evening gowns and dresses. I was fortunate to have got a few dresses stitched by her during my college days. She could give most of the famous fashion designers a run for their money. :)
Anglo Indians are a lively lot, full of fun and cheer with a love for good food. I cannot forget their Christmas eve festive spreads with mouth watering delicacies which included steamed pudding, plum cake, home made wine, kalkals, cookies, marzipan and baked casseroles and many many more.
Ages ago, I relished Meatball curry with saffron flavored coconut rice as part of a festive meal at a very dear friend’s home. A simple Mutton Kheema recipe with minimal spices yet so flavorful. With the Christmas season upon us, I thought its the best time to post Meatballs curry recipe. Meatballs aka koftas, are minced meat balls flavored with green chilies and coriander, that are slow cooked in a spiced gravy. The meatballs are tender, moist, and flavorful in a perfectly spiced tomato based curry. The meatball curry is usually served with aromatic coconut rice. A perfect meal on a cold winter day!
Preparing coconut rice is simple. Heat 1 1/2 tbsps of butter or ghee in a cooking vessel, add 2 cloves, 2 cardamoms, an inch of cinnamon stick and allow to crackle. Add 2 cups of rice and saute on low flame for 2 mts. Add 3 cups of thick coconut milk, 1 cup of water, salt and 1/4 tsp of turmeric powder or 4 to 5 strands of saffron and mix. Bring to a boil. Reduce flame and place lid. Cook till the rice is done.
Onions - 2, large, finely chopped
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Red chili powder - 1 1/2 tsps
Coriander powder - 1 tbsp
Cumin powder - 1/4 tsp
Garam masala powder - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Tomato puree - 1 cup
Coconut milk - 1/2 cup
Salt to taste
Cooking oil - 3 tbsps
Coriander leaves - 2 tbsps, finely chopped
For the Meatballs:
Mutton Kheema - 1/2 kg, finely minced meat
Garam masala powder - 1/4 tsp
Green chilies - 2, finely chopped
Coriander leaves - 4 tbsps, finely chopped
Salt - 1/2 tsp
In a bowl, add the thoroughly washed and drained mutton kheema/minced meat. Add garam masala powder, salt, chopped green chilies and coriander leaves and mix well. Make small balls and keep aside.
Heat oil in a heavy bottomed vessel. Add curry leaves and chopped onions and saute for 4 mts on low to medium flame. Once the onions turn transparent, add the ginger garlic paste and saute for 3 mts.
Add red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and turmeric powder. Mix. Add tomato puree and cook on low to medium flame for 7 mts or till the oil separates.
Add salt to taste and garam masala powder and mix. Add 1 1/2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Allow to simmer for 6-7 mts.
Drop the minced meat balls carefully, one at a time, into the gravy and allow to cook on medium flame for 3 mts. Reduce flame, place lid and cook for 20 mts.
Add coconut milk and cook for 2 mts and turn off heat.
Serve warm with coconut rice.
Mutton mince works best. You can use minced chicken or beef (as many Anglo Indians use) in place of mutton mince.
If you do not have coconut milk, add 2 tbsps of coconut paste at the time of cooking the tomato puree.
Fresh coriander leaves gives a good flavor, so do not omit it.
Add more water for a thinner consistency gravy/curry.
While preparing coconut rice, you can add a slit green chili at the time of crackling the whole spices.