KASHMIRI MUTTON CHOPS…tender, mild flavorful and melt in the mouth delicious!
They are called Kabargah in Kashmiri Pundit homes and Tabakh Maaz in Muslim ones and are traditionally made with the rich fatty breast cut. However increasingly Mutton chops are being used as a healthier substitute. They are first simmered in milk and aromatic spices till they are bone tender. Then in the second stage, they are dipped in yoghurt (in the Kashmiri Pundit version) and either shallow fried or sealed & baked off in clay plates to be browned crisp!
For about 24 chops (about 1 kg) take 1 big cup water and bring the chops to boil. Once you see the scum appear….skim it off the top. Now add 1 cup milk along with 2 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp cloves, 2 big piece dalchini, 4-5 green elaichi. 4-5 badi elaichi, one bay leaf and a hefty pinch of hing and a few strands of saffron. If you like, you can also tie the whole spices in a piece of muslin and slip inside.
Also add a tsp each of sonth (ground ginger), coarsely ground jeera, coarsely ground saunf along with some haldi and salt to taste.
Pressure cook chops till bone tender but still intact.
Simmer till juices reduce a little.
Now if your chops are very fatty, you can drain residual juices or reduce them completely till the juices are completely absorbed…your choice.
Pick out whole spices and discard.
Now make a batter with dahi, salt, Kashmiri chilli pwdr and garam masala.
Also grease an earthen pot with ghee.
Dip each chop in the yoghurt batter…
and then place in earthen pot…in a single layer.
Roll out dough into a thin roti.
Cover earthen pot with the roti.
Pinch around edges with wet fingertips to seal.
Place in 350F oven and bake for 40 minutes.
Take out pot. Brush roti with oil, season with salt, chilli pwdr and a light sprinkling of pounded saunf.
Switch off oven and Place the pot back in the still warm oven.
Rest for 15-20 minutes. Just before serving…break open the roti and serve warm!! I really enjoy the seasoned crispy roti on top as an accompaniment with the meat! 🙂
The slow gentle braising give the juicy, melting off the bone chops a crispy outer texture….which is absolutely mind blowing! 🙂
For the Kashmiri Pundit version, you may also add a little besan in the dahi to make a thin batter, if you want to shallow fry the chops.
The Muslim version does not include the dahi dip towards the end! After cooking the chops in milk. You either shallow fry them in ghee or bake them in a clay dish without dipping them in dahi.