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Goan meatball green curry

A bit fiddly, but well worth it - hot, sour, rich, satisfying.

For the meatballs


Coriander paste

500g minced lamb
50 g fresh breadcrumbs
1 tsp toasted ground cumin
˝ tsp salt 1 egg


30g tamarind pulp
6 tbsp fresh coriander
1 tsp salt
3 fresh green chillies
1 tbsp peeled, chopped fresh ginger

For the sauce


Toasted spice powder

2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
150g onion, finely chopped
˝ tsp ground coriander
˝ tsp ground cumin
300ml cocount milk


6 black peppercorns
2.5 cm cinnamon stick
4 green cardamom pods

Soak the tamarind pulp in 5 tbsp hot water for 20-30 minutes. Strain the tamarind through a fine sieve and tip the liquid into a food processor. Add the chopped coriander, salt, green chiliies and ginger, and blend to a puree. Set aside.

Toast the spice powder ingredeints in a small pan until the spices jump, crackle and brown. Cool slightly, then grind to a fine powder. Set aside.

Mix all the meatball ingredients together and form into shape - something about the size of a walnut. Fry in a little oil until browned. Keep warm.

Heat the oil in a pan. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until softened and light golden in colour. Add the ground spices, stir to mix, then the coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Stir in the coriander paste and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the fried meatballs, sprinkle the toasted spice mixture over the dish and simmer for another five minutes.

Serve with plain boiled white rice and good, spicy popadoms.

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