Best traditional Durban lamb curry recipe: step-by-step guide

Best traditional Durban lamb curry recipe: step-by-step guide

  • Curry traces its roots back to the Indian subcontinent, making delicacies like Indian lamb curry to be particularly popular.
  • Locally, Durban lamb curry is a mouth-watering meal that you should prepare for your loved ones on special occasions, if not regularly.
  • Also, Food and Lifestyle Content Creator Priyanka shares what cuts of lamb are commonly used in Durban lamb curry.
durban curry recipes
Image:, @freshliving_pnp
Source: Instagram

Did you know that Indians introduced curry in Natal about a century and a half ago? Over time, the Indian flavours and styles have changed to grow into the current delicacy that is Durban curry. The Durban option is hotter and more coloured, depending on how you choose to prepare it. You can cook this finger-licking meal using chicken, fish, beef, mutton, vegetables, and prawns. However, the lamb curry stew is arguably the most popular and a favourite for many.

Tips from an expert

Food and Lifestyle Content Creator Priyanka Govender-Chanderdeo (@inspiredbyprisfood) shared what cuts of lamb are commonly used in Durban lamb curry, and what qualities should you look for when selecting lamb for this recipe.

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"Something I wish I was schooled before I started adulting," Priyanka says. She adds that choosing lamb depends on personal preferences. Some prefer a tougher texture for that satisfying chew, while others enjoy slow-cooked tenderness.

Personally, I opt for a soft, tender A-grade/Class lamb that cooks quickly. I also consider the cut, I favour a mix of lamb pieces and stewing lamb from the leg. My husband likes the slightly fattier breast part. When buying, I ask the butcher to customize pieces for our preferences, creating a balanced flavor in the curry with just the right amount of fat for a flavorful lamb curry experience.

In her recipes, Priyanka also shares spices that she prefers to use when cooking lamb curry:

  • Cloves
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Elachi
  • Jeera Seeds
  • Fennel Seeds

Durban lamb curry recipes

You can prepare tasty Durban lamb curry right in your kitchen using readily available ingredients. It will take you about 10 minutes to prepare and another hour to cook. This recipe is enough to serve four people.

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  • 500-gram lamb on the bone, chopped into desired sizes
  • 1 black elachie/cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons of masala curry powder/ curry sticks
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (each 3 centimeters)
  • 2 tomatoes blanched and grated
  • 2 teaspoons ginger/garlic paste
  • 1 onion cut in quarters then thinly sliced or diced
  • Few coriander leaves for garnishing (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 bay leafs
  • 2 potatoes cut into medium-sized cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seeds/soomph
  • 75 ml vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 cup water

Cooking method

Looking for best mutton curry recipe ever? Here is an easy to follow Durban curry recipe for lamb:

  1. Heat the oil and then add the onions, the black elachie, bay leaf, cinnamon sticks, and the star anise. Wait until this combination fries and then add the curry masala/sticks.
Durban lamb curry recipe
Image:, (modified by author)
Source: UGC

2. Wait for the onions to turn slightly brown or become translucent and then add the ginger and/or garlic paste. Saute this mixture for a few minutes.

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3. Add the garam masala, soomph, and turmeric. Wait for a minute for a thick paste to form and then add water to get your desired thickness.

Durban mutton curry recipe
Image:, (modified by author)
Source: UGC

4. Put the lamb into the mixture and then mix thoroughly. Keep the heat on medium and give it five minutes for the meat to soak up the spices. Keep the cooking pot open during this step.

5. Add the tomatoes and salt to taste. Once done, cover the pot and allow the sauce and meat to cook until it thickens. This should take about half an hour.

Indian lamb curry
Image:, (modified by author)
Source: UGC

6. Once you are satisfied, throw in the potatoes and let them boil for about five minutes.

Durban beef curry
Image:, (modified by author)
Source: UGC

7. This is the penultimate step and it involves adjusting the thickness of the sauce as you desire. The sauce will come from the potatoes as they cook. Use more heat for a watery stew and a thicker paste.

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8. This lamb curry recipe gives you the freedom to play around with the ingredients to get your preferred stew. You can drop the coriander leaves to enhance the taste.

9. Your lamb curry stew is ready, and it can be served with rice or pasta.

Source: Briefly News

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