Red Lamb Curry

Evaporated milk is a handy ingredient in the steamy heat of the Malaysian tropics, where Nancy Lam's daging kambing merah is a classic dish
By Nancy Lam
Red Lamb Curry
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6-8
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • 1.5 kg leg of lamb, deboned
  • salt, to taste
  • 4 cm ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 10 blanched almonds
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • handful curry leaves
  • 4 tbsp curry powder, with a pinch of cumin, ground fennel seeds, chilli powder, garlic powder, fresh garlic
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 3cm cinnamon stick
  • 5 red onions, chopped
  • 4 tbsp tomato purée
  • 400 g canned chopped tomatoes
  • palm sugar, to taste
  • 225 ml evaporated milk

To serve

  • pitta bread
  • boiled rice
  • mango chutney, or aubergine chutney or pickle


1. Trim the excess fat from the lamb, then wash and drain the meat. Cut it into bite-sized cubes then place in a large saucepan with 1 tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, drain to remove the scum and rinse briefly. Set aside to drain thoroughly.

2. Use a pestle and mortar to pound the ginger, garlic and almonds to a fine paste. Set aside.

3. In a cooking pot, heat the oil and quickly fry the curry leaves for a few seconds until fragrant. Remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside for garnishing.

4. To the same pan add the cloves and cinnamon stick, then add the onions and the ginger-garlic-almond paste and cook, stirring, for approximately 5 minutes. Mix in the tomato purée and the curry powder and continue cooking and stirring until the mixture is fragrant. Add the lamb and the can of chopped tomatoes and cook for 30 minutes, stirring often.

5. Stir in the salt, sugar, evaporated milk and enough water enough to cover the meat. Bring to a boil and simmer until the lamb is tender, approximately 30 minutes. Garnish with the fried curry leaves before serving with pitta bread and rice, and a mango or aubergine chutney or pickle.

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