I love cars, specifically I love vintage cars, not obsession just love. When I’m big, I would like own a 1950’s convertible Mercedes Benz, either a 190SL or a 1957 Mercedes SL300 Roadster, you know the ones I’m talking about. The one’s from when Mercedes still had the luxury cars that no other car factory could match. When Bavaria Motor Works (BMW) was still making pot, pans and bicycles. #true story, this is what they did after World War II.
There are fundamental differences between men and women, whether in the name of gender equality we care to admit it or not. For example I enjoy Top gear, the humor, the cars, Richard Hammond… But I still won’t watch top gear a million times a day, as there seem to be an episode every hour of the day these days. And my husband and son do. They would even record an episode they’ve watched so they can watch it over and over and over again. And I don’t get this, it’s not like it’s something they need to be reminded of, like a certain recipe for example.
I am though similar in this regard with my cooking shows, but I record already watched episodes to be reminded of the cooking idea I had when I watched it or for the recipe. So it’s understandable, right?
The reason I’m going on about cars, is because we recently took our son to the race course. And everybody loved it. My son enjoyed the formula 1 cars. They had a demonstration on the race track from the car museum in Stellenbosch, with cars from the very beginning of motor racing.
I loved the racing cars, especially from the 1950’s -1970’s, from muscle cars to proper racing cars such as Ferraris, Porsches etc. There’s just something about those cars that is indescribable, authentic, timeless and very precious.
And my husband was interested in the motor bikes, mainly. And they were at the beginning and at the end of the show. Which I never heard the end off, since I made us a few seconds late. I was getting ready, you can’t rush perfection. Ok maybe it was a few minutes. So we only saw the half of the beginning, and the full race at the end.
Anyway, how is this related to food you may ask. Answer: simple, at the race course we were seated by a beautiful corner, tricky and sharp for the drivers. We witnessed a very dramatic crash by a pre-1950’s classic race car driven by Peter Lindenberg, a very well-known South African formula 1 power boating champion. He won it about 10 times in the row, in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. Spectacular crash, like you see it on TV!
This crash took me into a space I’m not very comfortable in. Where you’ve lost control, where you’re not doing the steering in your life. Where external powers have taken over and you’re dragged into directions you’re not familiar in or don’t want to be in.
While thinking this, I thought; what’s one of my favourite dishes I don’t like people messing with because I like them just so. Quick answer: curry, lamb curry to be specific. And my thoughts went further, what would happened if I messed with it? Like a car crash almost. Like a Deconstructed lamb curry!!? Right? Perfect, but I better not mess it up.
Deconstructed lamb curry: curry coated lamb cutlets and potato fondant cooked in spice infused oil, rice with a curry sauce and topped with a sprinkle of sambals.
What do you need?
2x Peeled tomatoes
Fresh cherry tomatoes
1 1/4 of white Onion, 1/4 of red onion, 1/4 cucumber
1/2 bouquet Garlic, 2 carrots, 1 whole green chili.
Spices-4 bay leaves, 6 curry leaves, 4 cinnamon sticks, 1tsp each of seeds( coriander, fennel, yellow mustard, black mustard, star anise, cardamom). Rajah Curry powder( mild and spicy), coriander powder, cinnamon powder, salt & pepper.
Red wine vinegar
What to do?
The potato fondant: Peel, and using the round cookie cutter, make them round cutting and leveling the bottom and top to make them flat( saving the pieces of trimmed potato for another day). Like thick discs. Then boil the potatoes in salty water. When they’re almost done, remove from the water and dry them.
Place them in a hot pan with 3 tbs of olive oil and brown them. When slightly browned, finish the cooking in the oven at 230 degrees for 10-15 minutes. To save time and infuse curry flavour, we will brown them with the lamb on one pan.
Let’s start with dry roasting our spices. Throw all the spices in the pot and turn the heat up. As the pot heats up, the spices will dry roast and release the natural oils that’ll flavour our curry. When they start to burn a bit, add 500ml of olive oil and let it continue roasting. This will be the basis of our curry flavour throughout our dish. When the oil starts to bubble, take the pot off the stove and sieve the mixture. Saving both the oil and the dried spices. Wrap the spices together into a bouquet and this will go onto your curry sauce. While the infused oil will be used into cooking both the sauce and the lamb. You’ll only use a few tbs of this oil, save it for next time.
In a hot pot with 50ml of spice infused olive oil, add chopped whole onion and soften, then garlic, carrots, green pepper and cook. Then peeled tomatoes, 100ml of red wine, 1 tsp mild and spicy Rajah curry powder, 1tsp chili flakes, 1 tsp paprika, a beef stock cube and 75 ml of water. Let this cook at medium heat for 15 minutes, then add chopped fresh coriander. Cook for another 5 minutes and we are done with the cooking. Cool down and lightly blitz making a chunky sauce.
Finely chop 1/4 white onion, 1/4 red onion, 1/4 cucumber, 8 cherry tomatoes, deseeded green chilli. Combine well and season with salt and a drizzle of red wine vinegar. I always add a touch of aromat to my sambals, I find it gives the extra flavour profile.
With 10 minutes to go until the sauce is finish, start with the lamb. Rub the lamb cutlets with mild curry powder, coriander powder, cinnamon powder, salt. Drizzle the spice infused olive oil on the hot pan, and place the cutlet in the pan when the oil is hot enough. Brown each side at high heat, Adding the fondant potatoes to this as well, then finish cooking in the oven at 230 degrees for 10 minutes.
And we’re done. Assemble your dish with the rice and fondant potato on each side of the plate, then the lamb topped with the curry sauce and sprinkles of sambals on top of that.
Bon Appetit! Adventure paid off, it tastes so delicious. I’m loving the potato fondant and the lamb is just met in your mouth yummy with the nice heat from the curry flavour. The sambals adds a refreshing freshness onto this rich and warm dish.
NB: I chose the mild and spicy curry powder as it gives the curry flavour without overwhelming the curry with the spice you can’t take away. I prefer having the flavour, then building up the heat I enjoy one spice at a time.
Which ine do I prefer: normal lamb curry or deconstructed? I don’t know, this is not a fair question!