Kanda, Papayta, nu Dahi ma Gos | Meat in Yoghurt Stew
This dish was a favourite of my mother Shireen. It is quite delicious when done right. The yoghurt must not be sour; it should be incorporated well and not curdle. The gravy has a thick consistency. The meat and potatoes must be really tender. The flavour is delightful and soul-warming. It is served with either fresh warm rotli or fresh crusty bread to mop up the gravy. It may just be that this dish is exclusive to the ancient Parsi cuisine.
3 tbsp oil
450 g/ 1 lb onions -very finely chopped
1 kg/ 2.2 lb bone-in lamb, goat, or mutton
1 kg/ 2.2 lb baby potatoes
500 g/ 1.1 lb pearl onions or shallots
1 cinnamon stick
12 black peppercorn
2 cardamom pods
2 tsp fresh garlic-crushed
2 tsp fresh ginger-crushed
1 ½ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp chilli powder
1 ½ tsp cumin powder
325 g/ 12 oz plain natural yoghurt-room temperature
Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and fry the finely chopped onions. Add all the spices and sauté them for a minute. Add the meat and let it brown for a few minutes.
Add about 4 cups of water, bring it to a boil, cover and lower the heat. Continue cooking for an hour or until the meat is very tender. The remaining gravy should be thick and about 2 cups total.
Prepare the potatoes and onions. Boil the potatoes, rinse out the
water, and peel them. Keep it aside. Repeat this with the onions or shallots.
(Onions take only 5 minutes; do not overcook). Heat the remaining oil and
shallow fry until golden brown. Drain them on kitchen paper. Season lightly while still warm.
Add the yoghurt, potatoes and onions to the meat and gravy. Mix well and cook for about 15 minutes on a low simmer.
Serve immediately with warm rotlis or fresh crusty bread.
The yoghurt must be full-fat plain natural yoghurt with an addition of salt and sugar. The yoghurt will separate if added to boiling hot gravy. Let it cool down to tepid before adding Bringing it back to the heat before serving can curdle it but leaving the pot open and keeping the heat low will avoid doing that. Tempering the yoghurt will also prevent it from curdling. Temper the yoghurt by spoonfuls with the hot gravy, then fold the tempered yoghurt into the remaining gravy.
The pieces of meat should be equal. The time it takes to cook the pieces will be dependent on the size of the pieces.
You don't have to boil or peel the potatoes if you do not wish to. Give them a rinse in boiling water and then pan fry them. Since they will not be cooked, add a tbsp of water once they are golden brown, cover the pan and lower the heat. This will steam cook the potatoes until they are soft. Give them 10 minutes to cook through. Give them 10 minutes to cook through.
Small shallots and red onions are often available in the frozen section of most supermarkets. This will save you time peeling the onions, which can be tedious.
My published cookbooks are available for sale through myself and on amazon.
The World of Parsi Cooking: Food Across Borders is a 3 award winning book. It has been self published in July 2019 and will be going into its second print in 2022.
The Art of Parsi Cooking; reviving an ancient cuisine was published in 2016 by Austin Macauley and continues to be available through amazon book depot book depository and from the publishers.