Originally called milagutannir, or pepper-water, in Tamil, this rich, flavorful soup evolved in Britain's Anglo-Indian community; our version comes from Madhur Jaffrey, Indian food expert and a longtime SAVEUR contributor. To grind almonds into powder, use a coffee grinder or spice mill.
- 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 1 lb. boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 1" cubes
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. finely grated, peeled ginger
- 1 1⁄2 tbsp. blanched slivered almonds, toasted and ground into a fine powder
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. ground coriander
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1⁄4 tsp. ground turmeric
- 1⁄2 tsp. cayenne
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. curry powder
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 6 cups chicken or lamb stock
- 1⁄4 cup chickpea flour
- Coarse chili powder (optional)
- 2 limes, quartered
- Finely chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 cups cooked rice
Heat oil in a large, nonstick pan over high heat. Add lamb, 8-10 pieces at a time, browning on all sides, about 5 minutes per batch. Transfer cooked lamb with slotted spoon to a bowl and set aside.
Reduce heat to medium-high, and add onions to oil in the same pan. Saute onions until their edges turn golden, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and ginger, stir for about 1 minute, then add almonds, coriander, cumin, turmeric, cayenne, curry powder, and season to taste with pepper. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly, then add 2 cups stock.
Transfer hot stock with spices into the jar of an electric blender. Add chickpea flour and blend until smooth. Pour pureed stock back into the same pan. Add reserved meat and accumulated juices. Stir in remaining 4 cups of stock and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer very gently until meat is tender, about 1 hour. Season to taste with salt.
To serve, pour soup into soup bowls, sprinkling each with a little chili powder, if using, and squeezing the juice of 2 lime quarters (quarters release their juice more easily than halves) into each bowl. Garnish bowls with cilantro. Pass rice at the table and add to soup according to taste.