With Baby Lynch due any day now (5th November if they’re on time), I’m into week three of maternity leave and am trying to use my time productively by cooking up a storm and preparing some meals to have in the freezer ready for those days where we need to eat but sticking a ready meal in the microwave is all we can manage.
I’ve made enough lasagne to see both of us through three meals, plus a sweet and sour chicken which will do us for two Friday night-style healthy ‘takeaway’ dinners, and have also made a big batch of Lamb, Spinach and Potato Curry from my favourite recipe book, the Hairy Dieters (vol. 1).
It’s all healthy stuff in this curry, lots of iron in the meat and spinach and potatoes which mean you don’t need to bother cooking rice as well. Here’s my take on the recipe – I halved everything in the book so we technically have enough to serve 3 people but no doubt we’ll devour it between the two of us in one go!
- 300g (ish) diced lamb shoulder (cheaper than the leg steaks the book recommends)
- Sunflower oil
- 1 large onion, roughly chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
- Small chunk of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1/2 a fresh chilli, deseeded and roughly chopped
- 50g curry powder (the book says curry paste but I just added a little water to the powder I already had in the cupboard)
- 200g can of chopped tomatoes
- 100-200g of potatoes, cut into chunks (peeled if you want, I cut corners and left the skin on)
- 225ml water
- 1 bay leaf
- Salt and ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp caster sugar
- 2 ripe tomatoes (I used cherry tomatoes which we already had in the fridge)
- 50g spinach leaves, washes
- Heat half a tablespoon on oil in a non-stick flameproof casserole dish and fry the diced lamb until it’s lightly coloured on all sides, then transfer the meat to a plate.
- Heat another 1/2 tablespoon in the pan and cook the onions over a medium heat for around 4 minutes until softened and lightly browned. Turn down the heat and add the garlic, ginger, chilli, curry powder and a splash of water, cooking for a couple of minutes and stirring regularly.
- Remove from the heat and let the mixture cool a little before throwing it in a food processor and blitzing until you have a puree. Tip back into the pan over a medium heat while you preheat the oven to 190°C/Fan 170°C/Gas 5.
- Add the lamb back to the onion puree and cook for a minute or two, stirring. Add the chopped tomatoes, potatoes, water, bay leaf, sugar and a pinch of salt.
- Stir and bring to a simmer, cover with a lid and put in the oven for 45 minutes or until the lamb is tender and the sauce has thickened. Give it a stir a few times while it’s in the oven.
- Remove from the oven, stir in the tomatoes and spinach, cover again and put back in the oven for 5 minutes to soften the tomatoes and wilt the spinach.
- Serve hot with some natural yoghurt, or if you’re batch cooking like me, leave it to cool completely before popping in the freezer!