It is very satisfying to make a real curry without just throwing in a teaspoon of stale curry powder which always has the same taste. Getting together your own spices is more trouble but the result is quite different and far better, and I think well worth the little extra time and trouble. This fairly mild curry has a really delicious, creamy but fresh flavour and you can get the right spices for it from an Indian shop, a delicatessen or even a large supermarket. Of course if you cannot get one or two of the ingredients do not worry, just put in what you can and I am sure you will be pleased with the result. You do not have to marinate the meat but I think it makes it much better.
Marinate the meat and soak the prunes overnight. Then get all your spices together ready prepared before you start the curry. Melt a large knob of butter and a tablespoon of oil in a large pan (or cast-iron casserole dish which you can also use to cook the curry in) and gently fry the ground spices, the chopped ginger, the crushed cardamom pods and the curry leaves. Stir in the meat, the turmeric, the chilli powder, the brown sugar, the garlic and the pieces of cinnamon. If you are not already using a cast-iron dish transfer the meat mixture to a casserole dish and pour over
© 1976 Josceline Dimbleby. All rights reserved.