Jamavar Laal Mass Recipe

Jamavar share Michelin-star curry recipes for launch of National Geographic Food

Culminating with the launch of National Geographic’s first standalone Food magazine in the UK (National Geographic Food), Chef Rhoti Ghai of Jamavar – having recently earned its first Michelin star – has shared a selection of recipes.


Traditionally made with mutton, this Rajhastani curry owes its vibrant red colour and heat to Mathania chillies, while ‘live’ charcoal imparts a smoky flavour.

Serves: 6 Takes: 2 hrs


450g ghee or clarified butter, plus extra 2 tbsp to finish

3 bay leaves

4 black cardamom pods

9 cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

2 medium red onions, finelysliced, plus extra to garnish

6 lamb shanks

10 whole dried Mathania or Kashmiri chillies, whizzed to a smooth paste with a little oil

1 tbsp ginger and garlic paste

60g Greek yoghurt

1 tbsp ground turmeric

1 tbsp ground coriander

4-6 garlic cloves, chopped

1 lump natural charcoal

handful fresh coriander chopped, to garnish


Heat the ghee in a large, deep pan over a high heat. Add the bay leaves, cardamom, 6 cloves and cinnamon to flavour the oil, then add the onions. Cook gently for 15-20 mins, until soft and golden.

Add the lamb shanks and cook on all sides until a golden crust forms. Stir in the chilli paste and ginger and garlic paste with a little salt and bhunno (stir-fry until the moisture evaporates).

Meanwhile, combine the yoghurt, turmeric and coriander in a mixing bowl; season with salt. Add to the lamb and stir until evenly coated. Pour in enough water to just cover the shanks, then pop on the lid and cook over a low heat for 90 minutes, or until the meat is tender. Alternatively, transfer to the oven and cook at 110°C, fan 90°C, gas ¼ for 8 hrs.

In a separate pan, heat 1 tbsp of ghee. Add the chopped garlic and cook until golden and fragrant. Stir it into the curry sauce.

Heat a lump of natural charcoal directly on a gas hob. Remove with tongs to a katori or small metal bowl. Add 1 tbsp melted ghee and the remaining cloves, then place in the middle of the curry. Immediately cover with a lid and leave for 3 mins to allow the smoke to infuse the curry. Remove the charcoal. Garnish with the extra onion and chopped coriander.


Photo: Sarah Coghill for National Geographic Food


This colourful plate of spiced potato served with honey, yogurt, white radish and cheffy ‘smears’ of tamarind and mint chutney brings together all the flavours of Delhi.

Serves: 5 Takes: 1 hr 20 mins


For the green masala

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 medium onion, finely chopped

½ tsp ginger and garlic paste

¼ tsp asafoetida

1½ tsp coriander powder

¼ tsp turmeric powder

1 tsp red chilli powder

1 tsp garam masala

100g tomatoes, chopped

100g dry green peas, soaked and boiled

For the aloo tikki

4 medium potatoes, boiled and grated

1 green chilli, chopped

½ tsp ground amchoor

1 tsp ginger, chopped

½ tsp cumin seeds, toasted

250g vegetable oil

2 tbsp cornflour

2 tbsp potato flour

1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped

rapeseed oil for deep-frying

For the tamarind chutney

100g seedless tamarind, soaked

½ tsp ground ginger

20g fresh ginger, grated

1 tsp salt

1 tsp ground red chilli

1 tsp ground coriander

50g each jaggery (cane sugar) and caster sugar

For the green mint chutney

½ bunch each fresh mint and

coriander, leaves chopped

10g ginger

2 green chillies, chopped

1 tbsp yoghurt

1 tbsp lime juice

¼ tsp black salt

For the sweet yogurt

100g Greek yogurt

50g honey

For the garnish

1 small onion, sliced

100g white radish, grated

2 tbsp sev (crunchy noodles)

1 tbsp fresh chopped coriander

½ pomegranate, seeded


For the green masala, heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and wait for them to pop before adding the onion. Cook until soft and golden.

Add the ginger and garlic paste and cook until fragrant. Add the remaining spices and cook for 1 min. Stir in the tomatoes and cook for 3-4 mins, until broken down.

Add the peas and 250ml water, then cover and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 7-8 mins, until thickened. Season.

For the aloo tikki, combine all the ingredients in a bowl; mix well. Shape into 10 even patties. Deep-fry until crisp and golden. Set aside.

For the tamarind chutney, heat the oil in a pan and add the tamarind, ground and fresh ginger, salt, chilli and coriander. Cook over a medium heat for 20-30 mins, stirring.

Add the jaggery and sugar and cook for 4-5 mins until thickened. Remove from the heat; leave to cool.

For the mint chutney, combine all the ingredients in a bowl; season.

For the sweet yoghurt, combine the yoghurt and honey in a bowl.

To serve, spoon the masala onto a plate and top with 2 aloo tikki. Drizzle over the chutneys and sweet yoghurt. Scatter over the garnish.

Jamavar Butter Chicken Recipe

Photo: Sarah Coghill for National Geographic Food


This rich, creamy curry was popularised in the 1950s by Kundanlal Gujral at Moti Mahal restaurant in Delhi. He devised the recipe as a way to use up unsold Tandoori chicken.

Serves: 6 Takes: 50 mins, plus time to marinate


250g yoghurt

1 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder

½ tsp black salt

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp lime juice

20g ginger and garlic paste

20g garam masala

1 tsp dry fenugreek leaves

50ml mustard oil

10 chicken breasts

50ml rapeseed oil

For the gravy

2kg tomatoes, quartered

30g salt

2 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder

3-4 bay leaves

10 green cardamom pods

2 blades mace

1 tbsp cumin seeds

50g ginger, roughly chopped

30g garlic, roughly chopped

250g butter

40g garlic and ginger paste

4-5 whole green chillies

2 tbsp honey

½ tsp kasuri methi

1 tsp garam masala

150g double cream


Place a muslin cloth in a sieve suspended over a bowl. Pour the yoghurt onto to the cloth and leave overnight. Reserve the solids and discard the liquid.

In a bowl, combine the hung yoghurt, chilli powder, black salt and salt, lime juice, ginger and garlic paste, garam masala, fenugreek leaves and mustard oil in a mixing bowl. Rub over the chicken, then cover and marinate in the fridge for at least 1 hr.

For the gravy, put the tomatoes in a deep pan along with the salt, 1 tbsp chilli powder, bay leaves, cardamom, mace, cumin, ginger and garlic. Add 200ml water and cook for 10-15 mins until the tomatoes have broken down. Leave to cool a little, then blend in a food processor until smooth. Strain through a sieve to remove any seeds or tomato skins.

In a separate pan, combine the butter, garlic and ginger paste, green chillies and 2 tbsp water. Cook for 1 min, then add the puréed tomato mixture and cook for 2-3 mins more.

Stir in the remaining chilli powder and honey. Season to taste, and then cook for 1 min. Add the kasuri methi and garam masala and cook for a further minute, stirring continuously. Set aside.

In a pan, fry the chicken in batches over medium-high heat until cooked through. Shred into small pieces and mix with the tomato sauce. Stir in the cream just before serving.

Jamavar Bengali Fish Curry Recipe

Photo: Sarah Coghill for National Geographic Food


With its many rivers, West Bengal is known for its fish and this flavoursome, spicy curry made with mustard oil is typical of the region. In India, you’ll often find it served with fish steaks. This lighter version calls for sea bass fillets but you can use any white or pink fish in its place. Enjoy with rice.

Serves: 2 Takes: 45 mins, plus time to marinate


2 sea bass fillets, washed and patted dry

1 tsp turmeric

½ tsp salt

2 tbsp rapeseed oil

For the gravy

1 medium potato, quartered

4 tbsp mustard oil

1 large dried bay leaf

½ tsp each mustard seeds, cumin seeds and onion seeds

¼ tsp fenugreek seeds

1 large onion, whizzed to a paste

1 tsp ginger paste

1 tsp garlic paste

2 tomatoes, finely chopped

½ tsp turmeric

1 tsp ground coriander

160ml fish stock

fresh coriander sprigs, to garnish


Put the fish in a flat dish and scatter over the turmeric and salt. Set aside for 30 mins to marinate.

Heat the rapeseed oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Sear the fish, skin-side down for 1 minute. Remove and set aside.

For the gravy, fry the potato in the fish oil until half-cooked and golden, adding more oil if necessary. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Set aside until needed.

In the same pan, heat the mustard oil over medium heat. Add the bay leaf, mustard, cumin, onion and fenugreek seeds. Sauté until the spluttering stops. Add the onion, ginger and garlic pastes and fry gently for 4-5 mins, until fragrant and cooked.

Stir in the tomatoes, turmeric and coriander. Cook over a medium heat for 10 mins or until the oil begins to separate, forming a sheen on top of the mixture.

Add the fish stock and potatoes and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are soft.

Return the fish to the pan and gently cook for a further 4-5 mins. To serve, spoon the gravy between 2 curry bowls and arrange a sea bass fillet in the middle of each. Garnish with a fresh coriander sprig.


Photo: Sarah Coghill for National Geographic Food


Guinea fowl has been reared in India since the medieval era and is almost more popular than chicken. If you’re not usually a fan of this game bird, which tastes somewhere between a chicken and pheasant, give this recipe a whirl. The delicious spicing and crispy meat will convert you.

Serves: 2 Takes: 30 mins, plus time to marinate


1 guinea fowl breast, skin removed and cut into strips

15g ginger and garlic paste

1 tsp lemon juice

pinch turmeric powder

½ bunch fresh coriander, leaves blanched and strained

25g desiccated coconut

3 green chillies, 2 chopped,

1 split lengthways

1 tsp cornflour

rapeseed oil for deep frying

1 tsp mustard seeds

20 fresh curry leaves

2 tbsp buttermilk

4 dried red chillies, plus extra to garnish

For the gravy

100ml natural yoghurt

1 tsp freshly chopped ginger

1 green chilli, chopped

½ bunch fresh coriander, chopped

½ tsp ground cumin

⅓ tsp mustard seeds

¼ tsp asafoetida

5 fresh curry leaves

Raw mango pachadi

50g hung yoghurt [see Butter chicken method, step 1]

10g fresh ginger, chopped

1 green chilli, chopped

2 tbsp rapeseed oil

½ tsp mustard seeds

¼ tsp asafoetida

5 curry leaves, plus extra to garnish


In a bowl, combine the guinea fowl, ginger and garlic paste, lemon juice, turmeric and a little salt. Cover and marinate in the fridge for at least 4 hrs.

In a blender, whizz the blanched coriander, coconut and chopped chillies with oil, if needed, to a paste; season. Stir in the cornflour. Use to coat the guinea fowl.

Heat a pan of oil to 150°C. Deep-fry the guinea fowl for 6-8 mins until cooked through and crisp.

Meanwhile, mix together all the gravy ingredients adding a little water to loosen.

Transfer the guinea fowl to a pan and toss with the mustard seeds, curry leaves, split green chilli, dried red chillies and buttermilk. Cook for 1-2 minutes.

For the mango pachadi: combine the yoghurt, ginger and chilli in a bowl. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a pan and fry the mustard seeds, asafoetida and curry leaves until aromatic. Leave to cool, then stir into the yoghurt mixture. Serve with the guinea fowl.

National Geographic Food launches on November 30 on newsstands. As an introductory offer, readers have the opportunity to subscribe to the first three issues for £3 at natgeofood.co.uk.

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