Rogan Josh: Escape to Kashmir on a flavorful ride

I’ve made a form of Rogan Josh before, but never following a strict, authentic recipe. Generally, this is because lamb is expensive, and I usually sub it for beef. My boyfriend and I jokingly call this dish Josh Groban, and it is just as silky smooth as his voice.

Gathering everything together.
Gathering everything together.

I took the opportunity in writing this post to learn a little bit more about the territory known as Kashmir. Kashmir refers to an area that is controlled by China, Pakistan, and India. The influences of all three of the countries are pretty obvious in this dish. It features a heft of assorted delicious spices.

Look at those sexy spices.
Look at those sexy spices.

My boyfriend was in town, and I invited over a couple friends to enjoy this dish. It takes a while, but it’s definitely a great dinner party meal. And if you’re not going for complete authenticity, you can do what I have done in the past and sub out the lamb for beef if you have a picky dinner guest.

Lamb shanks soaking in a spice bath.
Lamb shanks soaking in a spice bath.

Luckily, my friends were only too happy to enjoy lamb shanks. One word of caution I would offer is to make sure you get good quality lamb shanks. I purchased two shanks from a high-end grocery and the other two from a bargain grocery; I didn’t think it would make a difference, but it certainly did. The shanks from the low-end grocery were cut very badly, resulting in still-tough meat even after all the stewing. I saved those bones to make some broth later on.

Melissa eating like a cavewoman.
Melissa eating like a cavewoman.

To round out the meal, I made rice, Nepali-style saag (ghee, garlic and spinach sauteed together), and heated up some pre-made naan (I’m so not good at baking). It turned out beautifully, and the house was filled with wonderful smells.

A complete meal.
A complete meal.

If you’re looking for an easy-to-prepare dish and have a little extra time to let it heat on the stovetop, give Rogan Josh a try.

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