Meat patiala

Meat patiala

Spice Kitchen
Jana Liebenstein

Punjab is well known for its robust, spicy curries, bursting with flavour and rich in ghee. Enjoy this recipe from Patiala, in south-eastern Punjab, and use either lamb or goat forequarter or shoulder chops, or slices of lamb shank, beef shank or veal shank (the cut of meat used for osso bucco) to add fantastic texture and flavour. Cutting the meat on the bone adds more flavour – your butcher can do this for you. Serve the curry with Parathas or Chapattis.


Quantity Ingredient
125g Ghee
or 125ml vegetable or canola oil
1kg beef, lamb or goat or beef, lamb or goat chops, or a combination of both, diced, (see note)
2 onions, chopped
1/2-1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 tablespoons Ginger paste
2 tablespoons Garlic paste
4 black cardamom pods
5 cloves
2 bay leaves
2 x 2.5cm cinnamon sticks
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
2 tablespoons ground coriander
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, sliced
2 tablespoons cumin seeds, roasted and ground
coriander leaves, chopped, to garnish

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
or Chapattis


  1. Heat the ghee or oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat. Add the meat, onion and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 15–20 minutes, or until the meat is browned.
  2. Stir in the ginger and garlic pastes and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 8–10 minutes.
  3. Stir in the cardamom pods, cloves, bay leaves, cinnamon and peppercorns. There should be enough moisture for the onion and spices to coat the meat. If the ingredients are sticking to the base of the pan, stir in up to 250 ml water. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for about 1 hour, or until the meat is almost cooked.
  4. Stir in the chilli powder and turmeric and cook for 30 seconds, then add the ground coriander. Increase the heat to high, stir in the tomato and cook until it disintegrates and forms a smooth sauce.
  5. Stir in the ginger and cumin, then garnish with plenty of chopped coriander and serve.


  • You can use diced lamb, which is boneless, or you can choose from lamb forequarter or shoulder chops, slices of lamb shank or marrow bones. Get your butcher to cut shoulder chops and marrow bones into 3 cm pieces. Traditionally, Indian cooks use a combination of meat cut both on and off the bone.
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