Matar Gosht is such a homely, cosy comfort-in-a-bowl kind of meal. Honestly, it reminds me of days at home with my Mother when I was a little girl, new to this whole ‘eating on your own‘ business, breaking off tiny pieces of roti and drowning it it in the tasty shorba. Whenever my Mother cooked anything with peas, she would tell me how when she herself was a little girl, she would always pick out the peas from her shorba and save it to eat at the end because she wanted to savour the delicious little green peas on their own.
Cooking a good shorba was a bit of a challenge for me at first. The gravy needs to be smooth with no large chunks of onion and tomato, it needs to be seasoned well and it needs to be not to thick and not to thin – it has to be juuuuust right.
I have learnt with time and experience that to make a good shorba, you don’t need a lot of onions and tomatoes. Too many just make the shorba thick and gloopy. Too little however, and you end up with a thin and possibly colourless shorba that lacks its distinct taste. Also, you will need to fry the masala up very well. When you are frying up your onions and tomatoes, you are breaking them down and eventually they will melt into one – ‘yakjaan’ as my Mother says. That ‘yakjaan’ rule is essentially the golden rule when it comes to shorbas, if you do this then the texture of your shorba will be what we’re aiming for here.
I also have a popular Aloo Gosht shorba recipe available for your viewing and cooking pleasure.
For those of my readers who may not speak Urdu, shorba means broth. A shorba curry is one which is like a soup, spiced well with our traditionally used spices and often (but not always) includes meat or chicken.
So without further ado, here is a hug in a bowl Pakistani style, a warm and motherly comfort dish – Matar Gosht.
Enjoy, with love x
- 0.3 cup oil, or according to preference
- 1.5 onion, chopped well
- 1.5 tomatoes, chopped well
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 750 grams lamb, bone in
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp salt, or to taste
- 1 tsp red chilli powder, or to taste
- 0.25 tsp turmeric
- 1 cup frozen peas
- water, as needed
- 1 bunch coriander
- In a deep pot, heat the oil. Once well heated, add the onions and fry until translucent and slightly browning
- Add the tomatoes, spices and chopped garlic
- Add a gulp of water to the pot and immediately cover. Cook on high heat and occasionally lift up the lid and give the mixture a spin. Use your spoon to smash the mixture with an up-down motion
- Once almost all the water has dried out, remove the lid. Saute this mixture whilst continuously stirring and smashing the onions and tomatoes to help break them down. This is essential
- Once all the water has dried out and you can see the onions and tomatoes have to a large extent broken down, add the lamb. Begin to saute this too, stirring continuously until the lamb no longer remains pink
- Add one cup of water and bring to a boil. Alternatively, you can use freshly boiled water from the kettle. Cover and turn the heat to low, allowing this mixture to cook for 1.5hrs.
- Check occasionally to ensure the water hasn't dried out. If needed, add a gulp of water. By the end, this is how my lamb was looking (I didn't need to add any water). At this point, my lamb was cooked through and my onion/tomato masala was completely broken down into a smooth paste-like consistency
- Add in the frozen peas and 1.5 cups of water (again, you can use kettle water). Cover again and allow this to cook for a further 10 minutes
- Uncover your shorba and see if you are happy with the consistency of the broth. For me, these measurements work perfectly and I do not need to add more water or reduce the broth further. Should you need to add more water you may do so. Alternatively, should you want less shorba, turn the heat to high and cook the shorba until it is at your desired consistency
- Add chopped coriander and serve hot.
Matar Gosht goes well with both rotis and rice. You can also add potatoes to this recipe - this is also a very delicious combination. Should you wish to add potatoes, chop them into medium sized cubes and add them after one hour of cooking the lamb