In my research to write this post I learned that cardamoms are part of the ginger family. There are three types: green, black and Madagascar. The Indian curries we cook usually call for green cardamom and we use two to three whole pods which are cooked in the sauce and then discarded. Sometimes we forget to remove them before serving and we find out when we bite into something crunchy and bitter. This recipe, Elaichi Gosht, (Meat cooked with Cardamom), on p. 86 on Camellia Panjabi’s cookbook “50 Great Curries of India”, caught our attention because it is prepared with 35 ground green cardamoms, ten times more than any other curry we have cooked.
The other ingredient curious to us, as compared to other Indian curries we cook, is that this recipe calls for two teaspoons of ground black pepper. Our cookbook explains that in many parts of India this dish is prescribed to women who have recently given birth and in the Sindh region new mothers eat this curry every day. It makes me wonder how this primes the palates of breast-fed babes in India.
My husband prepared this curry with lamb, although it could be prepared with chicken. He ground the cardamom pods in our coffee bean grinder. The black pepper flavor was very intense and overpowered the other flavors, (tomatoes, turmeric, chile, coriander powder). This is our fifth adventure in our “50 Curries Project” and we have no regrets about trying something different, but it did not rate anywhere near one of our favorite curries. If we prepare this dish again, we would season it with about 1/2 tsp. black pepper, add garam masala before serving and garnish with a flavorful chutney.
Do you enjoy preparing and eating Indian curries? Check out our Curry Crazy Project on our 50 Curries Project page where we are cooking our way through Camellia Panjabi’s 50 Great Curries of India cookbook!
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