Indian Sunday Lunch – Chicken Tikka, Lamb Madras Potjie and Sandesh

We had the family over for lunch on Sunday and as my dad loves a good lamb curry, I decided on an Indian menu  with the curry made in a potjie over the coals for a South African twist.

Chicken Tikka Kebabs

4-6 Servings

1kg chicken fillets
1/2 onion chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, crushed
1cm ginger peeled and chopped
1 cup fresh coriander leaves
1/2 cup full fat yoghurt
25ml lemon juice
3tbsp  garam masala
Salt to taste
Oil or butter for grilling / frying

Make a paste with the ginger, garlic, onion and a little water in the food processor.  Add the coriander to the paste and process until smooth.

Add the lemon juice, yoghurt, garam masala and salt.

Pour over the chicken , mixing well to coat all the pieces.  Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.

Put on skewers and grill until chicken is browned on all sides and tender.

We had this with mini naan bread that I made from a recipe that you can find here and some mango chutney that I found in the freezer.

Lamb Madras

8-10 Servings

Curry powder:
4tbsp coriander seeds
2tsp fennel seeds
4tsp cumin seeds
4 cloves
4tsp fenugreek seeds
4 sticks cinnamon
4tsp yellow mustard seeds
4tsp black peppercorns
4 tbsp ground turmeric
4 tbsp. chili powder (Kashmiri chili powder if you can find it)

For the curry:
3kg lamb, cut into large cubes
8 small green chilies
12 cloves garlic
6 cm ginger
4tsp salt
3tsp red chili powder (Kashmiri chili powder if you can find it)
150ml oil
3tsp black mustard seeds
6 onions, finely chopped
12 curry leaves
1 can tomato puree
1 can crushed tomatoes
3tbsp tamarind paste
300ml water
450ml yoghurt
Fresh coriander

Dry roast all the spices for the curry powder.

Frying the spices
Frying the spices

Grind the spices to a fine  powder with the turmeric and chili powder.

Grinding the spices
Grinding the spices

Add the curry powder to 300ml yoghurt and pour over the lamb , mixing well to coat all the pieces. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Marinated Lamb
Marinated Lamb

Make a paste from the chilies, garlic, ginger and a little water.

Heat the oil in the potjie and toast the mustard seeds, letting them pop for a few seconds. Add the curry leaves and onions, sautéing for a few minutes.

Sautéing the onions
Sautéing the onions

Stir in the chili, garlic and ginger paste and sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring continuously.

Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato puree,  tamarind paste, red chili powder and water.

Bring to the boil and stir in the lamb.

Finally add the salt, cover and simmer for 3-4 hours stirring occasionally  until the sauce has thickened and the lamb is tender.

Lamb Madras in Potjie over fire
Lamb Madras in Potjie over fire

Add the rest of the yoghurt and garnish with fresh coriander.

We served this with basmati rice, cucumber raita and a tomato and onion sambal.

Sandesh (Bengali Milk Sweets)

I’m not a huge fan of Indian desserts as I find them too sweet and often too stodgy.   I have been wanting to make paneer (Indian cheese) for a while though so this recipe from the Saveur website for sweets made from paneer seemed like the perfect choice.

Boil milk, add lemon juice, remove from heat and strain the curds through a sieve with cheesecloth.

Tie the cheesecloth to form a purse and let it drain.

I probably did not boil the milk long enough or did not let it sit long enough  but I got very few curds – hence this very tiny little piece of paneer that was made out of 1 litre of milk.


Fortunately there were still some ricotta left from Adrienne’s date night menu which I added to my blob of paneer.

I added sugar and ground cardamom to the paneer/ricotta mixture to make 6 little balls, pressing a raisin into each ball.

I served this with coconut ice cream and mango chili sorbet made on previous occasions and frozen.  Even though my attempt at making paneer was not that successful I’ll definitely try it again.

Sandesh (Bengali Milk Sweets)
Sandesh (Bengali Milk Sweets)




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