Lamb saag

Lamb saag

The Curry Guy
4 or more as part of a multi-course meal

Good British lamb saag (saag gosht) is very close to the authentic Punjabi version. In the subcontinent, the meat is slowly cooked on the bone in a large karahi until the lamb almost falls off the bone into the rich spinach sauce. Some British Pakistani and Punjabi restaurants still prepare the curry in this way and promote it as one of their house special dishes.

At most curry houses, however, it’s made in under 10 minutes using prepared ingredients and plenty of cooking stock from pre-cooked lamb. This recipe might be quick, but when done correctly, it will taste like it’s been gently simmering for hours. If you like buttery ghee, this is a good one to use it in.


Quantity Ingredient
225g baby spinach leaves
3-6 fresh green bullet chillies, to taste
bunch fresh coriander, leaves only
4 tablespoons ghee, rapeseed oil
or seasoned oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons garlic paste, see recipe note
1 tablespoon ginger paste, see recipe note
3 tablespoon finely chopped coriander stalks
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon Mixed powder
1 teaspoon chilli powder
180ml Tomato purée
375ml Base curry sauce (large batch), heated
600g Pre-cooked stewed lamb/meat, plus 250ml of its cooking stock
2 tablespoons plain yoghurt
1 lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon Garam masala
salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Put the spinach, chillies and coriander leaves in a food processor and blend to a smooth paste with a little water (or spice stock). Set aside.
  2. Heat the ghee or oil in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. When hot, add the onion and fry for about 15 minutes until translucent and soft but not overly browned. Add the garlic and ginger pastes, and allow to sizzle for about 30 seconds. Add the coriander stalks, ground cumin and coriander, mixed powder and chilli powder, and stir to combine.
  3. Swirl in the tomato purée and about 250ml of the base curry sauce and let it come to a happy simmer. Add the stock and the rest of the base sauce. You can let it simmer for a few minutes and you don’t need to stir unless it is obviously catching on the pan. Be sure to stir in any caramelized sauce from the sides of the pan from time to time.
  4. Add the pre-cooked lamb pieces and simmer in the sauce until heated through. When the sauce is about the consistency you prefer, pour in the spinach purée and stir it all up. The bright green spinach will become darker as it cooks. Simmer for a further couple of minutes. If the sauce becomes too dry for your liking, just add a little more base sauce and/or lamb stock. To finish, season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the yoghurt 1 tbsp at a time then top with a squeeze of lemon juice and the garam masala.


  • I prefer to use more garlic than ginger in this recipe. You could use equally measured garlic and ginger paste.

Other ideas:

  • To make this curry even more interesting, add more texture, such as chickpeas or pre-cooked potatoes.
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