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Close up of a lamb curry with a pineapple salad and rice.

Lamb & Green Chilli Curry with Pineapple Pickle Salad

  • Author: Rachel Phipps
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes, plus marination time
  • Yield: Serves 2
  • Category: Curry
  • Cuisine: Indian


A fresh and aromatic lamb curry served with a pineapple and quick pickled onion salad and fluffy, lightly spiced pilau-style rice.



For the Lamb Curry

  • 100g (3.5 oz) natural yogurt
  • 300g (10.5 oz) diced lamb shoulder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • pinch ground cloves
  • 15 green cardamom pods
  • 1 small onion
  • 4 large garlic cloves
  • 15g (1/2 oz) fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp light oil
  • 2 large green chillis
  • 200ml (2/3 cup) passata
  • 250ml (1 cup) water

For the Pilau-style Rice

  • 150g (5 oz) white basmati rice
  • large knob unsalted butter
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 4 green cardamom pods
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 175ml (3/4 cup) boiling water

For the Pineapple Pickle Salad

  • 1/2 small red onion
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp golden caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 200g (7 oz) fresh pineapple
  • small handful fresh coriander


  1. Marinate the lamb at least an hour before you start cooking, but preferably overnight. In a small bowl, combine the lamb pieces, yogurt, salt, cinnamon, coriander, a pinch of ground cloves and the seeds of the cardamom pods, crushed to a fine powder in a mortar and pestle. Set aside.
  2. To start the curry, peel and roughly chop the onion, garlic and ginger before blitzing into a smooth paste in a mini chopper / food processor.
  3. Heat the oil over a medium high heat in a large, lidded shallow casserole dish or frying pan. Add the blitzed vegetables and gently fry for 5 minutes or so until soft, aromatic and slightly golden.
  4. Finely chop the chillies (removing the seeds and the inner white membranes if you want a mild curry) ands add them to the pan, cooking for a further 5 minutes until soft.
  5. Add the lamb pieces and their yogurt marinade to the pan along with the passata and the water. Stir until everything is combined and turn up the heat to bring the sauce to the boil. Clap on the lid and reduce the heat to low, allowing the curry to simmer with the lid on for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and allow it to simmer for a further 20 minutes until the sauce has thickened.
  6. Meanwhile, to make the pilau-style rice soak the rice in a bowl of cold water for 30 minutes before draining well in a sieve. Melt the butter in a small, lidded saucepan over a medium heat until just frothy before adding the spices – the cardamom pods slightly bashed to help them infuse) and frying for 2-3 minutes until aromatic.
  7. Stir in the rice so that the grains are well coated in spiced butter before adding the salt and the boiling water. Raise the heat and bring the pan to the boil before adding the lid and reducing to low to cook for 12 minutes. Remove from the heat, keeping the lid on and set aside to steam for 10 minutes before removing the whole spices and fluffing the rice up with a fork.
  8. To make the pineapple salad, peel and finely slice the onion. In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, salt and vinegar, and add the onions. Toss well, and set aside to become a quick pickle. When you’re ready to serve, pat them dry on a kitchen towel and toss with the pineapple, cubed, and the coriander, roughly chopped.