spicy lamb

Sorry is…such a sorry word!

Yudhika's Spicy Lamb Rosti Bake

Yudhika’s Spicy Lamb Rosti Bake

Is it just me or does the word sorry irritate anyone else? My thoughts and feelings percolate over time. This is not something new or a revelation of sorts and no, I haven’t had my heart-broken over the weekend…the word just irritates me! I can’t remember when it first struck me. Perhaps it was when my kids were little and bashing each other in a fight over a toy but I can still remember my son, Rushil, saying, ‘Sorry doesn’t even help!’ Over the past few years and somewhere in the midst of my latest ugly divorce, the dreadful word ‘sorry’ has been thrown carelessly into life changing conversations. Sometimes ‘Sorry’ comes only after years of someone forcing you to accept that an apology wasn’t necessary and by then, it is too late.

Sorry isn’t enough…the word has made the world a worse place to live in. People have become careless with those most dear to them. People take chances knowing that when the cracks appear all they need to do is say sorry. Think back to being a child at school and playing with your friends…if you hurt or wronged anyone on the playground, we apologized by saying, ‘Sorry’…how many times did you say it without real emotion, regret and remorse? It has always been a mindless almost insincere response.

Human beings are flawed….we all are and mistakes are a part of life and us growing emotionally. In this modern tech savvy world we live in, is it not possible that we have become emotionally unintelligent? Whether you are ill, being cheated on, just lost your job or experienced some sort of tragedy…it’s met with the same generic response, ‘I am sorry!’ How can such a small word possibly become the ‘one size fits all’ plaster for life’s wounds, whatever they might be? I was in a relationship once and my partner dated his ex girlfriend…he said, ‘It was no big deal’. If it was no big deal, why was it not mentioned when I made him dinner the next evening or when he chatted to me for hours the next day? Why did he actually do it? He took the chance and me for granted is the short answer thinking that all he had to do is say, ‘Sorry’ and that would come only if I found out, of course! Well, he didn’t anticipate that it would not be enough to fill in the cracks it left in the relationship….and the one thing about cracks is that they often expand and distort our feelings. My question is was he really sorry or sorry that I found out?

Is this me moaning about my relationship experiences….absolutely not! I have been lied to, cheated on and emotionally distraught at different stages of my life. It is wretched and the most important thing I have to share is that at no point was ‘sorry’ ever enough to take the pain away. When I have been left feeling wretched, I often heard the same thing which is, ‘Well, I said I was sorry…Didn’t I…What more do you want?’ and it simply wasn’t enough. I have been soul searching, wondering what was wrong with me and why an apology wasn’t the plaster I thought it would be. I realize that these apologies lack sincerity. Why isn’t it good enough? What do we want? More than words….once the trust is broken, it’s a long hard road back. Maybe it is a women thing…I wanted to know why and deal with the underlying issues and was met by the, ‘Sorry, can we sweep this under the rug now?’

Over the last while, I have had my share of generic sorries…but it’s taught me a lesson too. I would like to share my advice, if I may that is…I have been thinking, agonizing over the apologies I have not accepted and going forward ask you to live your life after erasing the word ‘Sorry’ from your vocabulary. Imagine making decisions and considering the people around you knowing that if you messed up, sorry would not be an option. I know that this would not erase any chance of making mistakes but we have become careless….maybe it would get us to think for a moment about everything that is precious and taken for granted.

When we are wrong, we have to work harder than just an apology…we have to work harder than ‘Sorry’ to find a remedy, support the person we are apologizing to and put the ‘no big deal’ mentality aside! ‘Sorry’ is not an apology…it’s a word and it has no magical powers!

Sorry is a sorry word….it is one of the most useless words in the dictionary. I have yet to write a blog about my carelessness and the things that I have been sorry about and apologies I’ve made….coming soon!

It’s been cold over the past few days and all I want to do is tuck into some comfort food. It could be the weather but my guess is that my thoughts have also been keeping me busy and craving the comfort of Wintery bakes…I am endlessly entertained in my own company…with some comfort food of course! Here is a recipe for a deliciously spicy lamb rosti bake! I love a traditional Cottage Pie but with the weather playing up, I spiced this recipe up along the lines of Keema Masala or Curried Mince. It is delicious, quick to prepare and comforting! I used the spices from my Curry Me Home range and at first glance it looks like there is lots of red chilli…keep in mind that lamb and beef ‘hold’ a lot more chilli and it is the base spice of the dish. Mince tends to often be flavorless and bland so you have to spice it up a fair bit!

Spicy Lamb Rosti Bake

750g lamb mince
50ml sunflower oil
1 cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf
5ml cumin seeds
1 onion, finely chopped
7ml coarse salt
30ml ginger and garlic, crushed
30 – 45ml red chilli powder
10ml ground coriander
5ml garam masala
2ml turmeric
200g chopped tomatoes

700g potatoes, boiled in skins – I used Up To Date variety
Salt, to season potatoes
100g butter

Here’s how:

Heat the sunflower oil in an AMC Paella Pan.
Fry the cinnamon stick and bay leaf until fragrant, add the cumin seeds.
When the seeds start to splutter, add the onion and salt.
Salute the onion until light golden.
Add the crushed ginger and garlic and fry for a few seconds.
Add the red chilli powder and warm through for 3 – 5 seconds.
Stir the lamb mince into the red chilli and fry until it changes colour.
Add the ground coriander, garam masala and turmeric.
Stir for a few minutes and add the tomatoes.
Simmer until the tomatoes soften.
Place the lamb mince into a casserole dish.
Peel the potatoes and grate them over the mince.
Season with salt and black pepper.
Melt the butter and pour it over the potatoes.
Bake the lamb in the oven at 180 degrees celsius until the potatoes are golden brown which would take about 35 -45 minutes.

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An Eid feast…

Eid recipe...Spiced Shoulder of lamb by Yudhika Sujanani

Eid recipe…Spiced Shoulder of lamb by Yudhika Sujanani

Last year I was asked to host another series of Sugar ‘n Spice with Saffron Tv and the Home Channel on DSTV. I was excited and overwhelmed but mainly taken aback at being asked since I am not a Muslim. I grew up in Isipingo, a little suburb near the old Durban airport, Louis Botha. We moved homes quite often but I do recall that there was much to celebrate irrespective of religion….everyone came out to play at Diwali, Eid and Easter!

I think most of the kids that grew up in my generation feel the same. When I was around 7 years old, we lived in Isipingo Beach and most of my friends and neighbours were Muslim. I can still remember the aroma of breyani wafting down the street…and our gracious neighbours always sent over a steaming pot….it was just how things were! For the Parda Lamb breyani recipe, click here: https://yudhikayumyum.com/tag/parda-lamb-breyani/ and you can also watch the clip from the show for a step by step guide to the perfect breyani…click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXuhIfzGiR0

I miss that, and feel quite sad that my kids will never experience childhood pleasures of being taken care of by a few moms from your street. Eid makes me remember those times….the aromas, the laughter and life’s little pleasures….speaking of life’s pleasures….there is just one more day to enter the KitchenAid competition on the blog…click here, leave a comment and you could be the lucky winner…https://yudhikayumyum.com/competition/kitchenaid-giveaway-2014/

And now for one of my Eid recipes….I prepared a spiced shoulder of lamb, slow roasted to perfection with potatoes and onion wedges! It’s also one of those recipes that takes a little time to assemble, some time to marinate and then it can be left to sort itself out in the oven. Vinegar is not something used much in curries and marinades and the combination of vinegar and yoghurt must seem even more strange but it works beautifully….and it does not end up in a curdled mess! The lamb is spicy with a slight tang from the vinegar…tender and very aromatic.

Spiced Shoulder of Lamb

Ingredients

1 shoulder of lamb around 2,5 – 2,7kg

2 onions, sliced and fried until golden
30ml red chilli powder
30ml Curry Me Home Magic Masala, optional
5ml finely ground cardamom
100ml finely crushed ginger and garlic
200ml white vinegar
400g double thick Greek Yoghurt…I used the Spar brand
10ml cumin seeds
15ml coarse salt

30ml sunflower oil
2 onions, cut into wedges
4 potatoes, halved
2 bay leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
500ml water

50g melted butter
5ml garam masala
60ml fresh cream

Handful fresh coriander, to garnish

Here’s how:

Place the brown onions in a liquidiser with a little water and blitz until smooth. Place the onion into a mixing bowl, then add the red chilli, Magic Masala, cardamom, ginger/garlic paste, vinegar and yoghurt. Add the cumin seeds and coarse salt and stir well to combine.

Use a sharp knife to make little incisions in the lamb. Do not remove the fat…this adds flavour and also keeps the lamb tender by preventing the meat from drying out.

Smear the marinade over the meat and place in a zip seal bag. Refrigerate the lamb overnight. Then bring the lamb to room temperature before roasting.

Grease a roasting pan with sunflower oil, then layer over the onions and potatoes. Place the cinnamon sticks and bay leaves in pan.

Place the marinated shoulder on top of the onions and potatoes and pour in the water. Cover with foil and roast in a preheated oven at 160 degrees celsius for 3 hours – check the meat and the potatoes – the lamb should come off the bone easily and the potatoes should be tender.

Remove the foil and drizzle the melted butter over the lamb. Increase the oven temperature to 200 degrees and roast until the meat is golden brown with a few darker speckled bits…baste the lamb every five minutes.

Stir the garam masala and cream into the roasting pan – then roast for another 2 – 3 minutes.

Garnish with fresh coriander.

Serve with fresh bread, naan or pilau rice.