Mutton Rezala is one of those dishes that is quintessentially Bengali. It is made with an aromatic blend of spices that invigorate all your senses. The gravy is thick and rich, with plenty of yogurt to balance the heat. You can adjust the amount of spices according to your tolerance of heat. I didn’t add too much because I’m not a fan of assaulting my stomach with spicy food anymore. But you can always increase the amount of chilli and pepper to suit your taste.
The dish tastes best if the mutton has been left to marinate overnight. But don’t worry, even if you forget to prep beforehand, you can always marinate it for an hour. Mutton Rezala may be slightly complicated with a few more steps than the usual recipes you come across. But a dish that makes your mouth water just at the thought of it, needs a little more effort. And you will absolutely love it, even all the effort you put into it.
Let me remind you, there are a lot of ingredients involved, so read the recipe carefully before you start. You can serve the Mutton Rezala piping hot rice, paratha or even some freshly baked bread. I cooked the mutton a tad bit too much and it was falling right off the bone. It seemed to melt in the mouth every time I took a bite. However, if you like it chewy, keep an eye on the stove, so as to not let the meat cook too much.
- 500g Mutton
- 300ml Curd
- ¼ cup and 2 tbsp Onion Paste
- 1 tbsp Grated Ginger
- 2 tbsp Minced Garlic
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2 Bay leaves
- 4 Dry Red Chilli
- 1 tsp Peppercorns
- 1 inch Cinnamon Stick
- 4 cloves
- 5-6 Green Cardamom
- 5 tbsp Ghee
- 2 tbsp Cashew paste
- 3 tbsp Poppy Seed paste
- ½ tsp Nutmeg powder
- ½ tsp Crushed Mace
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- 1 tsp Kewra water
- Salt to taste
- Take a mixing bowl for the marinade. Pat and dry the mutton then add it to the bowl. Add the curd, the grated ginger, minced garlic, ¼ cup of onion paste, and 1 tsp of salt. Mix well and cover it. Let it marinate for at least an hour. You can also prep it beforehand and leave it overnight.
- Before you start cooking, make sure the mutton is room temperature.
- Take a pressure cooker and add 2 tbsp of ghee to it. When the ghee is hot, add the bay leaves, dry red chilli, peppercorns, cinnamon stick, cloves and cardamom to it. Let it sputter for about 2-3 minutes.
- Shake the marinade off the mutton pieces and add them to the cooker. Fry on medium high heat for 3 minutes.
- Mix two cups of water into the remaining marinade. Add it to the pressure cooker once the mutton is slightly cooked. Bring it mixture to a boil, then close the lid. Let it cook for 4-5 whistles or until you think the mutton is half done.
- Heat the rest of the ghee in a large pan. Add the onion paste and sauté it until it changes color to golden.
- Add the poppy seed paste and the cashew paste and sauté for 2-3 more minutes. Make sure the raw smell is gone.
- Add the nutmeg powder and the crushed mace. The ghee will separate from the mixture and form a sheen on the top.
- Add the mutton pieces and fry for 4-5 minutes. Now add the mutton stock, that is, the liquid from the pressure cooker to the pan.
- Add the salt and sugar. Cover and continue cooking the mutton until is properly done. It should take about 15-20 minutes if your mutton is well cooked. Adjust the seasoning. Finish it off with the kewra water right before you take it off the heat.
And that’s all! The Mutton Rezala can seem a complicated recipe but it is one of those dishes that is worth every bit of the effort. You can serve it with some hot paratha or the traditional luchi or pulao. Or if you’re feeling bold, have the rezala by itself. It is delicious either way!
Tell me if you enjoy the recipe. And check out my Instagram for more!