Mutton/Goat Meat Masala or Spiced Goat Meat

I have been ignoring my kitchen travails for quite some time now. Blame it on my sheer laziness - there is just no other excuse. But actually, I have been trying out a variety of dishes post my Kolkata trip in an attempt to replicate some of them. Most of the time I end up with diametrically different results!

However, the recipe today that I wanted to share is something that I grew up relishing in my mother’s kitchen. I shamelessly tweaked it but no harm was done, I think.

We used to look forward to guests visiting us in our Manas home. Especially if they had kids our age! While my father took out some time from his hectic schedule to arrange picnics for them by the river side or take them for rides in the jungle, Ma busied herself in the kitchen. She would discuss the menu to be served with our kitchen help Ranjan and picked out the choicest of vegetables from our backyard. Someone would be sent to the market to get fresh fish and meat. Ranjan would then chop and pound the onion, ginger and garlic on the heavy grinding stone so that Ma could marinate the meat with the ground concoction. I would hang around the kitchen and inhale the delicious aroma of the marinade. I still remember the huge vessel where kilos of goat meat or mutton would be kept. None of my parents believed in scrimping food or in half-measures. There would always be a feast prepared for our guests.

We had no gas connection then, in Manas. It’s a jungle after all. There were two chulha or stoves fueled by wood. Ma found it difficult to cook squatting on the floor on a low stool. Hence, Deta had raised the platform of the stoves so that Ma could cook standing up. That’s how I remember Ma – wiping her brows while adjusting the heat of the stove, the smoke swirling up, and the stirring of magical cauldrons. They were magical indeed, for dish after dish would appear on our dining table, from the kitchen downstairs. Each dish a delicious potion. It is hardly a wonder that people still remember her cooking and my parents’ hospitality even today.

The other day I decided to try out her goat meat recipe for my father-in-law’s birthday. Although he had been asked by his doctor to avoid red meat, we guessed one day of indulgence won’t harm him much. I did not have enough time to marinate the mutton and resorted to using the pressure cooker to save on cooking time. I also made a spice mix of my own since I did not have garam masala powder at home. So, yes, it’s not my mother’s recipe per se, but I was guided by the memories of her kitchen and her hand. 

Would you like to try it out in your kitchen?

Mutton/Goat Meat Masala or Spiced Goat Meat


500 grams goat meat, bone in and with some fat

2 large onions – one ground to a paste and the other grated
2 tablespoons of fresh ginger garlic paste – one tablespoon for the marinade and one for cooking
2-3 green chillies, chopped
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon each of turmeric powder and Kashmiri chilli powder 
3 potatoes, quartered and rubbed with a little salt and turmeric powder
Salt and sugar to taste
Mustard oil

Roast and grind to a coarse powder:

½ teaspoon each of cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds (methi), 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, 1 big stick of cinnamon, 1 green cardamom (elaichi) and 3-4 dry red chillies


Marinate the mutton pieces with the ground onion paste, 1 tablespoon of ginger-garlic paste, 1 teaspoon each of turmeric powder and chilli powder and 1 tablespoon vinegar. Then drizzle around 2 tablespoons of mustard oil over the meat and mix thoroughly. The aroma of onion, ginger-garlic and mustard oil will overwhelm your senses, I assure you.

Keep aside the meat to marinate for at least an hour. The more the merrier.

Now, heat some oil in a thick bottomed pan or kadai and fry the quartered potatoes till they are almost done and assume a deep golden colour. Remove them from the kadai and keep aside.

Now, in the remaining oil add the chopped green chillies, grated onion and rest of the ginger garlic paste. Saute for sometime till the onion turns brown. Add a pinch of sugar to caramelize the onion.

Next, tip in the marinated mutton and stir well. Add salt. Keep the flame at medium and take care that the meat does not stick to the bottom of the pan or get burned. I did not cover the vessel since I would be using the pressure cooker.

When the water dries up and the mutton is sufficiently fried, transfer into a pressure cooker. Pour a cup of water, close the lid and put it over the gas. Let there be one whistle, then lower the heat and keep the cooker on flame for around 12 minutes. Take it off the gas and open the lid when it cools down.

Now, transfer the mutton back into the kadai and let it come to a boil. Tip in the fried potatoes and roasted ground masala and stir well. Cover and let it cook for around 5 minutes so that spice powders amalgamate with the meat and releases tons of flavor to the gravy. You can choose to keep the dish with some gravy or make it a dry mutton dish. Check if the meat is cooked through and add salt and sugar as necessary. Switch off the gas and you are done!

Serve the decadent mutton masala with fluffy rotis or steamed rice. Place a side dish of freshly cut tomato slices, onion rings and lime wedges. I doubt you will need anything else. Enjoy!


  1. Looks delectable, Sangeeta. :)
    I remember my Mom's & Granny's preparation of the dish. Just yummy!

    1. Thanks Anita! Moms and grannies are the best cooks :)


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