Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Dum Ka Qeema Smokey Keema

Smokey and delicious dum ka qeema
Here is my dum ka qeema recipe. I served this dish at an iftaar recently and a friend kept demanding that I give her the recipe. Since I wrote it down for her in an email, I decided to post it here on my food blog.

This recipe is adapted from Zubaida Tariq's Kitchen (p. 72)...I'd like to link that book, but oddly I cannot find the English version online. (I know I've seen it before!) I purchased the book in Pakistan years ago.

This dish is a favorite of mine, and it is so good that you end up eating more ground meat than you ever imagined you could consume in a single meal. It's something about the smokey flavor that makes you unable to stop indulging.

Ingredients
ground meat (beef or mutton, fatty is good)-2 lbs
yoghurt-1.5 cups whipped 
ginger/garlic paste-2 tbsp (one of each)
onion-1 (Already brown fried tali hui pyaaz)
mint-1/2 cup fresh leaves
green chile-4 (chopped roughly for grinding)
lemons-juice of 2 lemons, plus some lemon slices for garnish
unripe papaya (kacha papita) with ground with skin-2 tbs
khashkhaash (white poppyseed)-2tbsp roasted and ground
bhune hue channe (chilke wale)-2 tbsp roasted and ground to powder 
OR if you don't have it -2 tbp besan toasted in a pan
red chile powder-1 tbs
garam masala 2.5 tsp
black cumin (shahi zeera)-1/2 tsp
salt-1 tsp or to tasteoil-1/2 cup or so (maybe even 1 cup!)
1 cup water
plus 2-3 tbs more oil for dhungar


1 small piece of coal for giving dhungar

Garnish: fresh mint leaves, sliced raw onions (rings look especially nice), lemon wedges

Method:

Grind fried onions, gg paste, green chiles, mint, and juice of onelemon together. Mix this into the yoghurt. Add this into the meat and add in the khashkhaash, ground bhune hue channe/besan, 1 tsp red chilepowder, 2 tsp garam masala, and papaya. Mix well. Allow to rest forone hour. This will allow the meat to soften from the papaya. Don'tleave to marinade for more than one hour or the papaya will turn yourmeat to paste.


Heat oil in pan. Add in qeema and stir on high heat till the water dries up. This will take a long time. Like maybe 7-10 minutes. When it looks dry, add in salt and 1/2 cup water. Mix in, allow to come to a boil, then simmer covered for 15 minutes on low flame. Now turn up the flame and bhunofy it for 10 more minutes until it looks very brown. Sprinkle a little bit of water from the remaining half a cup you have to prevent any burning or sticking. You have to keep stirring and stirring and your arm will hurt, but when it is brown colored, it is done cooking. As long as it is well browned, you don't have to dry up any extra water you put in. It shouldn't be so extremely dry as to be crumbly, and should be tender. The ghee/oil as well as the water used at the end will keep this dish moist.


Giving dhungar (perfuming with smokey flavor): Now heat up your coal on the stove. When it is hot, make a cup out of silver foil (or use a cup made out of a single large onion petal) and put ghee or oil into that cup (2-3 tbs). Put the foil cup filled with oil into the pan with the cooked qeema. Place the hot coal into the oil and quickly cover. Allow the smoke that rises to penetrate the qeema for about 20 minutes or until the coal is cool.When the coal is cool, remove the foil and coal but pour the extra smokey oil into the qeema. Mix this oil into the qeema and also add in1/2 tsp more garam masala and 1/2 tsp shahi zeera. Before serving, stir in juice of one more lemon. (To prevent a house fire, take care to put the leftover burnt lump of coal in a cup of water for a while before disposing, and don't just throw it directly into the trashcan even if it seems completely cool.)


Top with garnishes and serve.

It is a fattening and arduous dish but very delicious. It is traditionally served with parathas, bhatooras, or puris. Naan works, too. It can also be rolled into paraathas along with sliced onions and tamarind chutney for dum ka qeema roll.


Variation:

Dum ke kabab

Use only 1 cup of yoghurt, but keep the rest of the ingredients the same. After one hour of marinading, do as follows: Do the dhungar process on the raw meat. Shape meat into hamburger patty shaped kababs or oval shapes, and pan fry in a little bit of oil on medium heat, nicely browning each side and cooking through thoroughly.