Rania’s Recipes: Lamb Vindaloo & Basmati Rice Pilaf

Rania Harris stopped by Pittsburgh Today Live to continue her culinary trip around the world. This week, Rania shows off some dishes inspired by Indian cuisine!

Lamb Vindaloo

  • 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 3 cloves
  • 2 inch stick of cinnamon
  • 10 black peppercorns
  • ¼ star anise
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 2¼ inch piece of ginger (peeled)
  • 6 garlic cloves (peeled)
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind pulp
  • 4 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 medium onions – chopped
  • 1½ pounds lamb loin – cubed
  • Palm sugar to taste
  • 15 curry leaves


Grind all of the spices, garlic, ginger and tamarind with the vinegar to make a smooth paste. Rub a little of the spice mixture on the lamb and marinate for 30 minutes.

Heat the oil in a sauté skillet and sauté the onions until golden brown. Add the spice paste mix and cook for about 5 minutes, to infuse the flavors, adding 2 tablespoons of water, if necessary.

Add the lamb cubes and sauté for 5 minutes. Add 4 cups of water and season with salt to taste. Cook over low heat until tender. Stir in the curry leaves and simmer for 3 – 4 minutes.

Spice mixture can be made ahead and kept frozen until ready to use. The vindaloo can be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Serves: 4

Basmati Rice Pilaf

  • ½ cup chopped dried apricots
  • 2 wide strips lemon zest
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala (an Indian spice blend)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup basmati rice, lightly rinsed and drained
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves
  • ½ cup toasted cashews
  • ¼ cup dried cherries


Put the apricots and lemon zest in the 2 cups of cold water. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, add the garam masala, and toast, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender and translucent, about 6 minutes.

Stir in the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Stir in the water along with the apricots, lemon zest, the 1 teaspoon salt, and coarse black pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, wrap a clean dish towel around the saucepan lid, and cover saucepan. Cook for 10 minutes, set aside for 5 minutes undisturbed. Remove lid and fluff with a fork. Add in the mint leaves, cashews and dried cherries. Mound the pilaf on a serving platter and serve immediately with the Lamb Vindaloo.

Serves: 4

Green Chutney

  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves
  • 2 Serrano chiles – chopped
  • ½ small onion – chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin powder
  • Sea salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice


Puree all of the ingredients except for the lime juice. Add the lime juice and stir well.


  • 1 quart Greek yogurt
  • 1 English Cucumber – peeled – seeded – chopped and blotted dry
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped mint
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients. Season with the salt and pepper, to taste.

  • http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2012/02/29/ptl-links-feb-29-2012/ PTL Links: Feb. 29, 2012 « CBS Pittsburgh

    […] Rania’s Recipes: Lamb Vindaloo & Basmati Rice Pilaf […]

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