Here we are yet again, on the 10th day of this month, which means it is reveal day for the Muslim Food Bloggers Challenges! This month’s challenge was to use meat as the star of our dish, as Eid al Adha is coming upon us. The challenge asked that we aim to use mutton as the meat of choice, however I used beef because mutton is not eaten in our home (although you can totally swap out beef for mutton in this recipe!).
I chose to make Nihari, a traditional Pakistani/North Indian delicacy that is a spicy slow cooked stew. Nihari is a dish that has eluded me ever since I started cooking seriously. I know I could just throw it together easily with a packet of ready-made Shan masala, but I’ve been wanting to learn how to make it at home from scratch.
You guys, this is the real deal. The Nihari secret is out, and now you can wow even the toughest critics with this amazing from-scratch Nihari!
Quick note- I mention the use of a banana pepper towards the end of the recipe. Although it can easily be replaced with a regular green chili, I highly recommend using it as it imparts an amazing flavor into the Nihari. It is my mother in-laws secret, which isn’t so much of a secret anymore 😉
Thank you once again to the lovely group of ladies who organize these challenges month after month! I look forward to when the challenges are announces, and wait excitedly until reveal day 🙂 Be sure to check out all the yummies everyone shared for this month’s challenge by clicking on the link below-
Yield: 4 – 6 Servings
For Nihari Spice Mix:
- ¼ cup fennel seeds
- 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
- 1 ½ tablespoons cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon whole black peppers
- 1 tablespoon cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ginger powder
- ¼ – ½ piece nutmeg
- 1 small piece mace
- 2 star anise
- 2 1-inch pieces cinnamon
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 black cardamoms
- 4 cardamoms
- 2 tablespoons coriander powder
- 1 tablespoon red chili powder
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 ½ – 2 pounds beef, cut into large cubes
- ½ cup oil
- 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste
- ¾ cup Nihari spice blend
- Salt, as needed.
- 1 banana pepper or jalapeno (or desired amount of green chillies)
For Tempering/ Bhagaar:
- ¼ cup oil
- 1 onion, thinly sliced (½ if onion is large)
- Cilantro, chopped
- Ginger, cut into matchsticks
- Fried onions
- Lemon or lime juice
Make Nihari Spice Blend:
Combine fennel seeds, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppers, cloves, ginger powder, nutmeg, mace, star anise, cinnamon, bay leave, black cardamoms, and cardamoms in the jar of a spice grinder. Grind into a fine powder. Transfer to a small bowl and add coriander powder, red chili powder, paprika, and turmeric. Mix well and set aside.
In a small bowl, combine wheat flour and water. Whisk until smooth and no lumps remain. Set aside.
Heat oil in a large vessel over medium high heat. Add meat and cook, stirring along, for 2 to 3 minutes. Add ginger-garlic paste, mix, and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add Nihari spice blend and salt, and mix well. Add enough water to cover the meat by a couple of inches, about 6 to 8 cups. Add the flour and water mixture, stir, and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 1 ½ to 3 hours, stirring intermittently, until the meat is cooked through and falling apart and desired consistency has been reached.
Add green chillies and reduce heat to low.
Make Tempering/ Bhagaar:
Heat oil in a small pan over medium high heat. Add onions and cook until golden brown, stirring often. Once onions have turned golden, carefully pour the mixture over the Nihari and cover. Cook over low heat for ten minutes. Remove from heat and serve with desired garnishes.
Note: Extra Nihari Spice Blend may be stored at room temperature for use at a later time.