Abhishek puts the little monkey to bed. Most of the nights. Five out of seven in a week may be? That was me with the butterfly when she was a baby and that used to be the best part of my day. Not just because those were the quietest few minutes of my entire day but also because listening to the sound of her breath going up and down was just so soothing. I sometimes regret not getting those moments just enough, now with the second one. But that’s the thing with the second ones (or third or fourth for that matter!), you already have another one to divide your attention. So sometimes (or maybe many times) you are in that survival mode where putting food on the table, on time or stocking the shelves with clean clothes and sheets take priority. But the good part is, since I get to lay her sleepy and tiny palms on mine or cuddle with that eeny weeny monkey, much lesser this time around, when I do, I do it for longer. I have to admit, that soothing sound of the rhythm of their breath, just never gets old!
Its also funny to observe just how different your two kids can be. The same set of parents with the same set of genes, same surroundings and same upbringing, yet two kids almost poles apart. Sometimes you see a shadow of yourselves in them and then other times you go, whoa, where did that come from?! These two girls of mine, so different from each other and yet so similar in so many ways. When one is shy to express but filled with emotions too matured for her tender age, the other is feisty and knows how to get her way. One ever so careful of every step she takes for she knows half the time she is in her dreamland, the other doesn’t think twice before climbing up a spot too high for her age and then go for a dive. Although both deceivingly innocent with very similar looks and their undeniable love for books are some of the undeniable commonalities they share.
One more thing they definitely share is their love for lamb curry. The picky eater and also the “good eater” in the family both of them suck on those bone marrows and chuck down those chunks of tenderly cooked red meat in a spicy broth, like no man’s business. One of the reasons we cook lamb or goat curry often now. And because of a busy life where I’ve tried to adapt to short cuts this recipe is one of my go to(s) specially when they are craving for some lamb curry on a weeknight. In this recipe you practically just dump everything together in a pressure cooker and either fix rest of the accompaniments while the curry is cooking or you can spend that time building blocks with the little ones and then watch them giggle without control when it smashes on the floor. Your choice!
3 tablespoon oil (canola, mustard or olive)
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon peppercorn
1″ cinnamon stick
2 black cardamom
1 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1 tablespoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 1/2 cup onion (sliced)
2 cloves garlic (smashed)
2 thai green chili (sliced)
1 pound lamb shoulder or goat (boneless, cut into 1″- 1 1/2″ chunks)
1/2 cup tomato (diced)
Cilantro (for garnish)
Heat oil in a pressure cooker. In the meantime pound all the spices in mortar and pestle, into a coarse powder. As the oil heats up, throw in the spices. As they sputter, stir in smashed garlic. Cook for 20-25 second until the garlic turns golden.
Add onion and chili. Turn the heat to medium. Add salt. Cook for 8-10 minutes until the onion begins ti turn golden. Add meat. Cook for 3-5 minutes to brown the meat from the outside. Add tomato. Mix everything well together.
Tighten the lid of the pressure cooker. Cook for upto 2 whistles (approx. 10 minutes) or until the meat is cooked through. Turn off the heat. Let the pressure settle in the pressure cooker before opening the lid. Turn the heat on and cook off any extra liquid, if you like. Garnish with cilantro. Serve hot with naan and rice.