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Spicy Lamb Stew: Rogan Josh

One of the specialties of Kashmir, a northern region in India, is a rich and hearty spicy lamb stew: rogan josh. This delicious Persian dish has a spicy and aromatic curry sauce.

a heaping white bowl of rogan josh with a chunk of naan on a saucer
The name rogan josh comes from two Persian words: rogan which means oil and josh: heat. Some linguists debate on the origin of these words believe the word rogan is closer to the term “rouge” (red in French), or rojo (red in Spanish). Both assumptions make perfect sense to me given its reddish color.

a red dutch oven of rogan josh with a spoon

Lamb rogan josh is an aromatic symphony

The mixture of spices is what gives this amazing spicy lamb stew, rogan josh, its deep, rich,  and aromatic taste. I used my home made garam masala, as well as other aromatic spices. I bought cardamom pods at a local health food market at a reasonable price. If you can’t find the pods, you can use ground cardamom. Add with caution because it has a very strong taste.

a close up of a dutch oven with lamb stew rogan josh

The original Rogan josh recipe was borrowed by the Mughals from the Persians. The Mughals were the conquering forced that ruled India from about 1526-1853. Their power base was located in the center of India. At the peak of summer heat, the Mughals escaped to cooler Kashmir. Until today rogan josh is the most important dish of this region.

Rogan josh is normally uses lamb. You can use beef as a substitute.  I like to serve rogan josh with basmati rice, and naan bread. A side of plain yogurt is not a bad idea to cut down the heat of the dish.

a bowl of lamb stew with naan dipping in and naan on the saucer

Step by step photos to make rogan josh:

A collage of photos showing the ingredients and steps to make lamb rogan josh in a red pan on a stove.

  1. Gather all your ingredients together and have then measured, chopped and ready to go.
  2. In a small bowl or mortar mash together the minced ginger, garlic with 2 Tbsp of water to make a paste and set aside. (You can mash with a fork also.)
  3. Place the peppercorns, cardamom pods, cloves and cinnamon stick in a piece of cheese cloth and tie with butcher’s twine. Set this aromatic bouquet aside for later.
  4. Mix together the cumin, garam masala, coriander powder, cayenne and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.
  5. Heat the oil on medium in a pot or large braising pan. Once hot add the lamb cubes and brown on all sides turning frequently. Add the minced shallots and ginger paste. Cook until the shallots are translucent.
  6. Sprinkle with the spice mixture and salt.
  7. Add the tomato paste and stir in.
  8. Pour in the water then bring to a boil.
  9. While coming to a boil submerge the aromatic bouquet and bay leaves then reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook covered for 30 minutes or until the lamb is tender.
  10. Serve with fresh chopped tomato and cilantro along with rice or naan bread. Enjoy! ( Remove the aromatic bouquet and bay leaves before serving.)

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • How long can I save the rogan josh? Once it has completely cooled, you can store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
  • Can I freeze this rogan josh? Yes, you must completely cool the rogan josh before freezing. Store in airtight containers for up to 4-6 months. For single servings, freeze portions in a muffin tin and pop out the frozen rounds and store in freezer bags.
  • How do I reheat the rogan josh? Reheat the rogan josh in the microwave for 2-3 minutes and stop to stir every 30-45 seconds until hot. Once reheated do not cool and store again in the refrigerator, consume it right away. So only reheat the amount you will consume.
  • Can I make this in the slow cooker? Sure, you can add all the ingredients to a slow cooker then stir it really well to combine the spices and sauce. Set the slow cooker on high for 4-6 hours. Check the lamb to see if it is fork tender and then it is done.

If you love spicy Indian foods or recipes with curry you can make at home, here are some easy ones to try:

Spicy chicken xacuti comes from the Goa region in the southwest coast of India and it’s spicy and sweet with coconut milk.

Here is a vegan recipe for tofu with sweet potatoes and other vegetables in a spicy curry tomato sauce.

One recipe you must try is the classic Punjabi dish of chicken tikka masala and this dish has a really interesting food history too.

If you are having an appetizer party you can try these kofta kari or spicy lamb meatballs with a tomato sauce and ground cashews.

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Try this fantastic dish from Kashmir that has its origins from Persia. Spicy and rich rogan josh is an easy Indian dish to prepare in your dutch oven or slow cooker. The mixture of spices is what gives this amazing spicy lamb stew its deep, rich, and aromatic taste. I used my homemade garam masala as well as other spices. If you like curry dishes you will love this dish. | ethnicspoon.com
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Spicy Lamb Stew: Rogan Josh

A spicy, aromatic, and hearty lamb stew from the Kashmir region India and is of Persian origin. Rogan Josh is infused with the flavors of cardamom, ginger, garam masala, cloves, and cayenne pepper. A perfect dish for any occasion.
Course Main dish
Cuisine Indian
Keyword easy stew, Kashmir dish, lamb stew, slow cook
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 374kcal
Author Analida Braeger

Ingredients

Ginger Paste:

  • 2 Tbsp. ginger fresh, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed

Aromatic Bouquet:

  • 12 peppercorns
  • 6 pods cardamom
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon

Spice Mixture:

  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne
  • 1/8 tsp. cinnamon

Other Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs. lamb cubed (optional: beef cubes or stew beef)
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 shallots minced
  • 1 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 2 bay leaves

Optional: Cilantro and fresh chopped tomatoes for garnish.

    Instructions

    Make the ginger paste:

    • In a small bowl mash together the ginger, water, and garlic to create a thick paste. You can mash it with a fork or a mortar and pestle work well also.

    Prepare the spices:

    • Place cardamom pods, peppercorns, cloves and cinnamon stick in a piece of cheesecloth and tie tightly with twine. This aromatic bouquet will be added to the cooking pan later.
    • In another small bowl, prepare the spice mixture by mixing together cumin, garam masala, coriander, cayenne and cinnamon.

    Prepare the lamb:

    • Heat oil on medium in a large pot or braising pan. Add in the lamb cubes turning over to brown on all sides. Add the shallots and ginger paste then cook until the shallots are translucent. Sprinkle with salt and the spice mixture.
    • Mix the tomato paste and then the water until well blended into the pan. Add the aromatic bouquet, and the bay leaves.
    • Reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for approximately 30 minutes until the lamb is quite tender.
    • Remove the cheese cloth with the spices before serving. Garnish with tomato, cilantro and serve with rice or naan bread.

    Notes

    Frequently Asked Questions:

    • How long can I save the rogan josh? Once it has completely cooled, you can store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
    • Can I freeze this rogan josh? Yes, you must completely cool the rogan josh before freezing. Store in airtight containers for up to 4-6 months. For single servings, freeze portions in a muffin tin and pop out the frozen rounds and store in freezer bags.
    • How do I reheat the rogan josh? Reheat the rogan josh in the microwave for 2-3 minutes and stop to stir every 30-45 seconds until hot. Once reheated do not cool and store again in the refrigerator, consume it right away. So only reheat the amount you will consume.
    • Can I make this in the slow cooker? Sure, you can add all the ingredients to a slow cooker then stir it really well to combine the spices and sauce. Set the slow cooker on high for 4-6 hours. Check the lamb to see if it is fork tender and then it is done.
     

    Nutrition

    Calories: 374kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 342mg | Potassium: 378mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 230IU | Vitamin C: 5.6mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 2.8mg


    This post first appeared on Analida's Ethnic Spoon, please read the originial post: here

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