“What is this fishy looking dish”, random blog hopper aka RBH
“It is not fish, it is mutton, and a very tasty one at that”, my blog aka MB
“No, I meant it looks suspicious, what’s with this shadow play…Guru Dutt style”, RBH
“Oh this fantastic woman who writes my blog is very talented, she can shoot pictures at all angles…Kurosawa angle, Guru Dutt angle…anything…very talented”, MB with hint of pride
“Umm I think she needs more light, to light up her fishy dishes, ask her to adjust the white balance of her camera next time”, a not impressed RBH mumbling about how blogs will just put up anything and expect people to comment & such
“Oh she knows all about balance, you don’t have to worry, just eat it and move”..MB gruffly
And so I present to you the Marag as copied very diligently from Nabeela’s Blog.But if you notice I have multiplied all ingredients with 3 so it is technically not copying :D
“But the title says it is Marag, why isn’t it soupy then and why is it served with a Pulao” connoisseur blog hopper aka CBH
“You know marag comes from Arabic maraq (marak or marag). Marga or marag in Iraq is a stew "of meat and vegetables simmered in tomato sauce". How did you make it look like this” CBH does not like this and is very flustered.
“Oh the woman who writes my blog is very talented, she can make a stew look like a gravy, a pulao look like a khichdi…anything…very talented”, MB with the hint of pride now faltering
Ok so I did make the Marag more thicker than it should be and hence served it with a Pulao instead of the traditional Arabic bread or Sheermal as is the norm in Hydereabdi weddings. But I made it thicker because I had to serve it with Pulao since it was D's birthday and the Bong friends preferred pulao, so it is not my fault. Also since Sra announced Grindless Gravies I had to send her something and I couldn't send her a stew so this is it. Blame it on her, on D or rice loving Bongs if you want to.
It tastes heavenly and so don't go by its looks here. Look at Nabeela's for how gorgeous it can be.
Also check Manisha's slow cooker version here (oops she too multiplied by 3 but god promise I did not copy from her, I really had 3lb of mutton)
What you Need
Mutton (I used Goat meat you can use lamb) ~ 3 lb
Onion ~ 3 medium onion blend to a smooth paste. I DID NOT use the blender. I grated them in the grater just like my MOM used to. But whoever makes this PLEASE use the blender unless you are sending it to Sra.
Corriander leaves ~ 2 bunches of leaves
Green Chillies ~ 5-6 finely chopped. Again the original recipe does not use green chillies, they use serrano chillies in water and then use the water. I like it hot so added Indian green chillies
Yogurt ~ 2 cups
Ginger paste ~ 2 Tbsp
Garlic Paste ~ 2 Tbsp
Cumin seed ~ 3 tsp
Cinnamon Sticks ~ 3 sticks (length 1 finger )
Bay Leaf ~ 3
Cardamom Pods ~ 6
Cloves ~ 9
Peppercorns ~ 30
Black pepper powder ~ 1 tsp or more
Garam masala ~ 2 tsp
Sugar ~ 1tsp (optional)
Ghee ~ 2tbsp (nabeela says you should never skip this)
Olive Oil/Canola Oil ~ 3 tbsp
How I Did It
Though Nabeela’s recipe does not ask for it, I marinated the mutton overnight in 1 cup yogurt mixed with ½ tbsp Ginger paste, ½ tbsp garlic paste and a pinch of turmeric.
I took it out from the refrigerator an hour or two before cooking and sprinkled a little salt on it and let it rest.
The corriander leaves should be finely chopped and mixed with about 2 cups of water and microwave for 2 mins. Though only the water should have been used in the recipe I used the entire thing
Heat the Ghee + Oil in a pressure cooker and add all the bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, cloves, pepper corns and cumin. You may or may not follow this order but do add them.
When the spices start browning add the onion paste along with the sugar and sauté till the onion takes on a pinkish hue. Nabbela says to fry for 2 mins and ideally that should be it.
Add the Ginger Paste and the Garlic Paste and I also added the green chillies at this point. Saute for a couple of minutes.
Add the mutton and the yogurt. In my case this was 1 cup of fresh yogurt plus the marinade. Keep frying for some more minutes till the masala mixes nicely with the mutton.
Add the corrinader water(I also added the finely chopped leaves in there), black pepper powder, garam masala, salt and mix well.
I added only very little water at this point as I did not want t it soupy. You can add 1 cup of water or more if you want to have it as a stew.
Put the lid on the pressure cooker. I then lowered the heat and kept it on the flame to slow cook for about 45 minutes. After 45 minutes I raised the heat and cooked till I could hear the “Phisssssssssh” of the cooker. In all it took me 50-55 minutes from closing the lid. After opening the lid I kep it on heat for few more minutes to thicken the gravy
What you Need
Basmati Rice ~ 4 cups
Whole Garam Masala
Bay Leaves ~ 6 small ones
Cinnamon stick ~ 2 the size of my finger, ok less thick
Cloves ~ 11-12
Elaichi ~ 8
Onion ~ 1 medium chopped very very fine and small
Ginger paste ~ 1 tbsp
Kaju/Cashew ~ ½ cup
Kishmish/raisins ~ ¼ cup
Milk ~ 1 cup
Saffron ~ a few strands (mine were pretty old and so did not give much color)
Water ~ 7 cups (idea is, rice:liquid = 1:2)
Salt ~ according to taste, ususally a little less since the Pualo will be served with a gravy
Sugar ~ ½ tsp
Oil ~ You can use Oil + Ghee or just Oil
Ghee ~ ½ tbsp (you can use more)
How I did It
Soak the rice for 30 mins, wash it and then let it to dry on a paper plate. You can also put it on a newspaper to dry like my ma used to
When the rice is almost dry smear the grains uniformly with the ghee and mix the cashew and the raisisns with it.
Heat Oil + Ghee or just Oil in a heavy bottomed cooking pan
Add the whole garam masala and wait a minute till they brown
Add the onions and sugar and fry till they take a pinkish-brown hue.
Add the ginger paste and fry for a few seconds.
Add the rice and sauté mixing the rice uniformly with the masala.
Soak saffron strands in milk, warm it and add the warm milk.
Add salt & water. Instead of adding all 7 cups of water together, I added 4 cups of water, covered and let the rice cook. When the water was almost dry and the rice was still uncooked, I gave it a light stir and added the 3 remaining cups of water. Cover and keep a close watch till rice is cooked.
Serve with anything you wish
Trivia: In Scotland oatmeal is mixed with fat, water, onions and seasoning, and boiled in a sheep's intestine to make "marag geal"' Outer Hebridean white pudding, served sliced with fried eggs at breakfast. So if you google for marag this what you will get other than Manisha and Nabeela's recipe