Lamb, Recipes

Korma is one of the world’s most popular curries and is traditionally prepared in a potjie on the fire. It’s been around since way before the days of electricity, and back then it was really the only way to do it. Prepare it with the actual spices as opposed to using a pre-mixed masala or paste. Even though it is spicy, the korma is relatively mild and quite creamy, so it suits a wide variety of palates. You’re unlikely to need to down jugs of water and milk after enjoying it.Some people will tell you that it’s possible to make the korma with chicken, which is true, but then it’s not a traditional korma. Your only options are lamb or goat but as I’m not much of a goat man, I reckon the only meat you should use for a korma potjie is lamb. I prefer deboned leg, but any deboned chunks of lamb meat will do. 


  • 1 kg deboned leg of lamb (cut into cubes)
  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 tot butter
  • 2 onions (chopped) 
  • 4 garlic cloves (crushed or chopped)
  • ginger, equal in volume to the garlic (grated)
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (or chilli powder)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 5 cloves (whole)
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 tots tomato paste (or a 50g sachet)
  • 1 cup plain yoghurt
  • 1 cup fresh cream
  • 100g ground almonds
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • fresh coriander (to serve)


  1. Get as much heat as possible under the potjie and flash-fry the meat in two batches. You’re not trying to cook the meat and you don’t even need to seal the meat on all sides. All you want is some brown searing on some or all sides of each piece of meat. Set the seared meat aside in a safe place for later use. If the meat has a bit of fat on it, I fry it as is without any oil or butter, but if the meat looks very lean to you, add a dash of oil or blob of butter to ensure that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the potjie.
  2. With the flames still licking away at your now empty potjie, add the oil, butter and chopped onion to the potjie and fry the onion for a few minutes until it gets some colour.
  3. Then add all the other herbs and spices and toss around with the onion for about 1 minute until it has the type of fragrance that makes your neighbours jealous and the lions downwind from the camp roar. The potjie could get quite dry and run the risk of burning in this step, so add a splash of water if needed.
  4. It’s now time to fetch the lamb from step 1. Add it to the potjie together with any liquids that might have pooled in whatever container you had the lamb resting in. Also add the tomato paste. Stir everything through.
  5. At this stage, there might be some sticky bits on the bottom of the pot, trying to burn themselves onto the pot and take up permanent residency there. Add a dash of water to the potjie, and use a wooden spoon to scrape and negotiate it all loose.
  6. Now stir in the yoghurt bit by bit and once all of it is in, close the lid of the potjie. You want it to simmer very gently for the next 30 minutes with the lid closed.
  7. After 30 minutes, stir in the cream and ground almonds. Don’t close the lid again, just let the potjie simmer uncovered until you are happy with the consistency of the sauce.
  8. When you are almost entirely but not quite happy with the consistency, taste the potjie and add salt and pepper to taste if needed.
  9. Serve with basmati rice, fresh coriander and any other curry side dishes of your choice like rice of fresh naan bread.