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A Dinner to Celebrate With

A Dinner to Celebrate With

Issue 8 Nov / Dec 2004

First Published on November/December 2004

To access the issue page, click here  


Shahi Tukre (Royal Dessert)

  • 8 thick white slices of bread (edges removed and each slice halved)

  • 1 cup ghee or oil

  • 4 pints of full-fat milk

  • 4 cardamom pods

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 12 almonds and 12 pistachios peeled (by leaving in boiling water for a while until skins come off easily) and sliced into flakes.

  • Fine edible silver paper for decorating (optional)

Method :

Boil the milk in a large pan with the cardamom and then simmer for 1 hour until milk has reduced somewhat. Then add sugar and stir in.

Remove the cardamom pods.

Lightly toast the bread slices and then fry in a frying pan adding small amounts of ghee bit by bit until each slice is light golden and has soaked up the ghee.

Lay the toasted bread slices out in layers in a large dish (like a lasagne dish).

Pour the milk onto the toasted bread pieces evenly and then sprinkle the flaked nuts on top and decorate with the edible silver paper.

Can be eaten warm or chilled.


Chicken in a nutty yoghurt marinade



  •  1 large Roaster chicken cut into 12 pieces and cleaned, washed and drained

  •  1 medium onion, peeled and roughly chopped

  •  1 cup of oil

  •  1 tbsp crushed garlic

  •  1 tbsp crushed ginger

  •  4 cloves

  •  4 cardamom pods

  •  4 black pepper corns

  •  2 cinnamon sticks (approx. 1 inch each in length)

  •  1 tsp turmeric powder

  •  1 tsp red chilli powder

  •  2 tsp salt

  •  2 cups of greek yoghurt

  •  10 Almonds, flaked (sliced into thin pieces

  •  20 Peanuts, flaked

  •  10 Cashew nuts, flaked

  •  25 Raisins, whole

  •  2 medium green chillies (optional), chopped into a few pieces.

  •  A few sprigs of coriander



Method : 

 Put the chicken into a wide, heavy based pan. Pour 1/3 of the oil onto the chicken, add the chopped onion, all the whole spices, the ginger, garlic, turmeric, chilli powder and salt. Mix and coat the chicken with those


 Cover the pan with the chicken and spice mixture, and place on the cooker on a medium heat setting for 15 minutes uncovering and stirring occasionally.

 Carefully uncover the pan and add the yoghurt and mix it into the chicken. Allow to cook for two minutes and then turn off the heat.

 In a frying pan, heat the remaining 2/3 cup of oil on a medium heat setting. Add all of the nuts. When they are golden brown, add the raisins and stir for about 10 secs. Then pour the oil and nut mixture into the pan with the chicken mixture. Garnish with the green chilli pieces and coriander sprigs. 


Spring Lamb curry





  • 1/2 kg leg of spring lamb (cut into medium pieces with bone)

  • 1/4 kg of new potatoes, peeled and cut in half

  • 1 large onion, finely sliced

  • half a cup of oil

  • Whole spices: 2 cloves, 2 small cardamoms, 4 black peppers, 2 bay leaves, 

  • 1 inch piece of cinammon stick.

  • 1 large or two medium chopped plum tomatoes

  • 1tsp fresh garlic, crushed

  • 1tsp fresh ginger, crushed

  • 2tsp coriander powder

  • 1 tsp cumin powder

  • 1 tsp garam masala powder

  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

  • 1 tsp red chilli powder

  • 1 & 1/2 tsp salt

  • chopped coriander leaves to garnish



Heat oil in a saucepan, add the whole spices, sauté for a few seconds. Add onions. Fry till golden. Add washed and cleaned meat to pan and ginger and garlic. Stir for a minute. Add chopped tomatoes and all the powdered spices and salt. Stir the spices in, then cover the pan and leave on a low heat. Water will come out of the meat.

 After 10 minutes, the meat will be half cooked. Stir and gradually add a little water, then stir, add water then stir. After 2 minutes, add the potatoes and mix. Add 1 and half cup of water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and leave to simmer for 5 minutes. When the potatoes are cooked through, turn the heat off and garnish with chopped coriander leaves to serve. 


Bhagara rice



4 cups of basmati rice, washed and soaked for half an hour or


Half a cup of oil or ghee

2 tsp garam masala mix

2 tsp salt

1 medium onion, finely sliced.

A pinch of yellow food colouring,

2 tbsp rose water, a pinch of saffron, mixed together.



Add ghee into a heavy based saucepan. Add garam masala and onions. Fry until golden brown. Take the fried onions out and spread out on a tray. In the ghee that is remaining in the saucepan, add the rice (without water) and stir slowly. Add 6 cups of boiled water. Put on a high heat setting, add salt and when the rice boils reduce to simmering. Add the rose water mixture. Leave for 10-12 minutes. Stir immediately after taking off the heat. Add the onions before serving. 


Fried Breaded Lamb Chops




This is great as a starter and will always be a hit with guests.




  • 1kg Spring Lamb front chops
  • 4 Cloves
  • 4 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Egg, beaten with a fork in a bowl
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 4 slices of bread (white or wholemeal)
  • 2 cups oil for frying



Method : 

Wash the lamb chops and place in a pan (without water as water will come out of the chops themselves) with the cloves, garlic and salt and mix with a wooden spoon. Place a lid on the pan and allow to steam on a medium heat setting for 10 minutes. Then lower the heat further for another 10 minutes.

The idea is for it to be cooked through but not so much that the meat comes

off the bone.

When the meat is quite soft then take the lid off and increase the heat setting to evaporate any remaining water. Carefully take the cooked lamb chops and place on a tray to cool.

Tear the slices of bread and place into a liquidiser or food-processor and whiz into breadcrumbs. Spread the breadcrumbs out onto a plate.

Heat the oil in a frying pan on a medium-low heat setting. Dip a lambchop

into the egg until covered and then place the chops on the plate of breadcrumbs and coat all over with breadcrumbs.

Place the covered lambchop into the oil and allow to fry until golden on both sides. Make sure that the heat setting is not too high or the breadcrumbs will burn and a too-low setting will make the coating soggy.

Take the lamb chop out of the oil and place on some kitchen towels to soak up any excess oil.

A great starter served with tomato ketchup or a chutney. 

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