Nothing beats the comfort of a warm and hearty Malabar mutton stew. Especially a recipe curated by Chef Sheik Mohideen.
A meal that reminds you of home and soothes your soul looks different across India. Even in the same state, you could find differences in preparations at every turn.
For Chef Sheik Mohideen, Brand chef at Savya Rasa, this recipe of Malabar Mutton Ishtew is just that. He believes in tracing back his roots and recreating them without disturbing the culture of the originals.
And that’s what he’s recreated at Savya Rasa, a South Indian fine-dine experience. The menu defines authenticity at its best; a careful and detailed study of Southern Indian cuisine taking you back to medieval times.
Chef Sheik was exposed to the culinary arts from a very young age, often assisting his mother in the kitchen. He did his B.Sc. in Hotel Management from Cherraans Arts and Science College from 2003-2006. During college, he was a part of a research team for developing recipes for Kongunadu cuisine under the tutelage of Chef Jacob.
His 15-year extensive culinary journey speaks volumes about him as he continues to passionately set milestones with new projects with each passing day.
“I believe in simplicity. First, we identify what can be sourced locally. If not, what’s the best substitute? If nothing is working out, we avoid that dish in that particular region. We craft the menu according to the ingredients. For example, Savya Rasa – Chennai menu is different from Savya Rasa- Delhi menu, because we won’t be able to source few ingredients locally from Delhi for certain South Indian dishes”, he says.
This recipe comes particularly from the Malabar region in Kerala, which lies on the southwest coast of Kerala between the Western Ghats and the Arabian Sea. Much of the food habitation in this region has significant Arabic influence.
This mutton stew is a rich broth, with succulent pieces of mutton and potatoes. It’s simmered in delicate southern flavours of coconut milk, crushed ginger, curry leaves, and spices.
Most Kerala foods are cooked in clay pots, owing to the gentle slow heating properties. It also plays a big role in preserving the nutrition inherent in any food. Clay being alkaline helps in neutralizing the potential hydrogen balance of the food by interacting with the acid present in the food.
So go forth, try the recipe for yourself and enjoy!
For the stew
- 500 gm mutton (with bone/ without bone)
- 150 gm potatoes
- 2 nos. green chilly (slitted)
- 2 inches ginger
- 100 ml coconut oil
- 10-15 curry leaves
- 100 gm onion
- Salt, to taste
- 1 tbsp peppercorn
- 1 coconut (grated)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 nos. star anise
- 1 cinnamon
- ½ tsp Kerala garam masala
For the Kerala garam masala
- 2 sticks cinnamon
- 6 cardamom
- 6 cloves
- 1 tbsp fennel
- Pre-preparations: Dry roast all the ingredients mentioned for garam masala and make it into a fine powder. Take two extracts, thin and thick coconut milk from grated coconut.
- Cook the mutton along with all whole spices, slit green chillies, sliced onions, cubes of potatoes, julienned ginger, thin coconut milk and required salt in a clay pot till the muttons and potatoes become soft enough and simmer.
- In a pan, heat coconut oil, add curry leaves and add the garam masala. Remove it from the heat before the masala burns and add it to the simmered broth.
- Finally, add the thick coconut milk and then switch off the flame. Mix it well and allow it to rest in the heat for some time.
- Serve it hot with appams.