Railway Mutton Curry was developed by the chefs of the Indian Railways during the British Raj keeping in mind the delicate palates of the British people. It was first introduced on the Frontier Mail (Golden Temple Mail) run by the Western Railway during pre-independence era. This milder version of the classic mutton curry was not too spicy yet an amazing fusion dish blending the taste of both Indian and English spices. The Railway Mutton Curry was served with rice, bread or dinner rolls.
Vinegar was added to increase the durability of the meat during long journeys. Though the dish originated in the colonial times it continued to be served in railway refreshment rooms and on long distance trains till much later. The recipe of the Railway Mutton Curry varies depending on which route the trains ran . Coconut,Tamarind and curry leaves were used in the recipe followed in Southern Railways, whereas the eastern railways gave it a miss while preparing this curry.
The Railway Mutton Curry is not the typical mutton curry that I generally make on Sundays. This curry is mostly prepared using English spices such as Pepper, bay leaves, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, and Indian condiments such as chilies, cumin, coriander, turmeric, ginger, garlic etc. It has it’s own distinctive aroma from the flavor of mustard oil, fennel, whole spices, coriander, cumin, vinegar etc. This Railway Mutton Curry was cooked in the railway canteen and served mostly in the recreation rooms and first class dining cars on the train during British Raj .
I have adapted this recipe from my Fellow Blogger Sujata Roy as part of our 98th Foodie Monday BlogHop theme of #cooking with fellow bloggers. You can find the original version at Sujata’s blog. This recipe is easy to cook and delicious to eat.
- 500 gms Mutton
- 1 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
- 1 tsp Mustard Oil
- 1 tbsp yogurt/ vinegar/lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
Dry Grind :
- 1/2 tsp Fennel Seed
- 1/2 tsp Coriander seed
- 1/2 tsp Cumin seed
- 5-6 Black Peppercorn
- 1 large Onion thinly sliced
- 2 large Potatoes each halved
- 2 large Tomato pureed
- 1 tsp Ginger Garlic Paste
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp Kashmiri Red chilli Powder
- 2 nos Green Chilli Slit lengthwise
- 1 Black Cardamom
- 2 green cardamoms
- 1/2 inch Cinnamon stick
- 2 Cloves
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 strand Mace
- 1/4 th tsp Nutmeg powder
- Warm Water – As required
- 4 tbsp Mustard Oil
- Salt As per taste
- 1/4 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp ghee
- Marinate the Mutton with ginger garlic paste,yogurt,Turmeric powder, Mustard Oil ,Red Chilly powder,salt for minimum 3 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.
- Dry roast Fennel Seed , Black Peppercorn, Coriander and Cumin seeds and grind them to a fine powder.
- Peel the potatoes and cut them into half.Fry the potatoes. Don’t make them brown.Fry till the color becomes light golden brown. Remove and keep them aside.
- Heat oil in the Pressure cooker and once the oil is heated, put the whole Garam masala. Let them fry and sizzle for couple of minutes.
- Now add the ginger and garlic pastes and sauté till their raw smell is gone.Add the sliced onions along with a pinch of salt and sauté till they turn brown. Now add the tomato puree, green chili, turmeric powder, red chili powder,fennel, coriander, cumin , black peppercorn powder and Saute till oil leaves the sides.
- Add the mutton pieces.Increase the heat to a high and Stir continuously to avoid sticking to the bottom. Now reduce the heat to a medium and continue cooking the meat without the lid. The meat will release juices and you can see a thin layer of oil on top of the pieces.
- Once it gets to this point, add the fried potatoes and water . Close the lid and pressure cook for 3 – 4 whistle on high heat and then reduce the heat and cook on a low flame for 5 minutes.
- Once done, switch off the heat ,let it sit for sometime till the pressure dies down. After opening the lid add the coconut milk and give everything a good stir. Add a spoon of ghee and 1/2 tsp of powdered garam masala.
- Close the lid and let the flours seep into the meat properly for 10 – 12 minutes and serve with steamed rice, pulao, roti or Indian flat bread, paratha, puri or luchi.