Parbhi style Kaḍai Mutton – ताजल्यातलं सुक्कं मटण

For all those who think my Marathi sucks (refer to the Devnagri titles on many previous posts) the words, spellings and grammar are deliberate.

Pathare Prabhus speak a version of Marathi that’s slightly different compared to the shuddh bhaasha… So while the cast iron frying pan (kaḍai) I’ve used to cook up this dish is referred to as कढई in Marathi, parbhus will invariably refer to it as ताजलं (pronounced taazla)…

I love this version of mutton which is so simple to cook and with a little bit of patience, yields delicious results. Most families will have their own little twists to this traditional recipe. The inspiration for this post though is a recipe posted by another PP food expert – Kalpana Talpade on her YouTube channel.

Here’s my recipe –

Mutton on the bone – 750 gms (500 gms leg and 250 gms chops)… Trim off excess fat and cut into bite size pieces.

Onions – 100 gms (2 medium onions chopped fine)

Shallots – 500 gms (peel, top and tail)

Potatoes – 2/3 nos peel and cut lengthwise into 6/8 pieces

For the marinade

  1. Dahi – 1 cup
  2. Ginger Garlic Paste 2 tbsp
  3. Haldi – 1 tsp
  4. Red Chilli Powder – 1 and ½ tbsp
  5. Parbhi Sambhaar – 1 and ½ tbsp
  6. Pepper Powder – 1 tsp
  7. Cooking oil – 1 tsp

Ghee – 2 tsp

For garam masala tempering 

  1. Cloves – 2/3 nos 
  2. Peppercorns- 2/3 nos 
  3. Cinnamon/Cassia Bark – 1″ piece
  4. Whole green cardamoms – 2 nos
  5. Bay leaf – 1

Salt to taste and water as required

Marinate the cleaned mutton with the listed ingredients and leave in the refrigerator at least overnight – the longer the better. You won’t be adding any other masala and hence its important that the meat steeps in the marinade really well. 

Season an iron kadai – I rinse mine and oil the insides and leave it overnight. In the morning, heat till it smokes and wipe the insides with a tissue – your cast iron kadai is ready to use. 

 On a gentle flame, heat the ghee and splutter the whole garam masala.
Add the chopped onions and sauté till translucent. Add the peeled shallots and sauté for another minute or so.

Pressure cook the mutton for around 10 minutes or so with 2 cups of water. Add the parboiled mutton to the kadai and keep sautéing on a high flame till the mutton and onion are mixed well. 

Reserve the stock.

Cover with a heavy lid and place a weight on top. Keep the flame slow and add the stock a ladle or 2 at a time till the mutton is completely tender. Be careful of adding stock at regular intervals so that the mutton does not dry up nor sticks to the kadai. 

When it’s alsmost done, add the potatoes and replenish stock, cover and simmer till potatoes are done.

Once the potatoes are cooked and mutton is falling off the bone, remove the lid and dry up any residual liquid completely. 

The iron kadai and the slow cooked onions impart this dish a special taste.

Serve with rotis or parathas and a salad on the side. Perfect with a beer on a hot October Sunday!


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