Chef Amit Bangar's Braised Lamb Rib Vindaloo

Serves 2-4


2 racks lamb ribs

Spice Rub

4 dried sanaam chilies

3½ tsp whole cumin seeds

2 tsp white poppy seeds

20 whole cloves

1 tsp black peppercorn

10 cloves of garlic, peeled

20 g fresh ginger

1 whole green chili, chopped

7 Tbs (105 mL) white vinegar

1 Tbs (15 mL) tamarind paste

2 Tbs salt

Note: ground spices may be substituted for whole spices at a 1:1 ratio. For whole cloves, substitute ½ tsp ground cloves. If using ground spices, toast lightly in a dry pan before use.

¼ cup (60 mL) mustard oil

1 cinnamon stick

2 tsp yellow mustard seed

1 large red onion, thinly sliced

1 tsp turmeric

1½ tsp red chili powder

1 Tbs sugar

1 stem curry leaves

2 Tbs (30 mL) ghee (optional)

1 lime, for garnish

Fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish

Thinly sliced onion, for garnish


  1. In a pan, toast the sanaam chilli, cumin, poppy, seeds, cloves, and peppercorns together over medium-low heat, constantly moving the spices to ensure they don’t burn. Set aside to cool, then grind with a mortar and pestle.
  2. Once all spices are finely ground, add garlic, ginger, and green chilli to the mortar, crushing into a fine paste. Add tamarind paste and vinegar and mix all together.
  3. Pat down the lamb ribs with a paper towel to remove excess moisture. In a mixing bowl, rub spice paste onto the lamb ribs, fully coating with all of the marinade. Cover, and leave in the fridge overnight.
  4. Preheat oven to 325° F
  5. Add mustard oil to a wide, heavy bottom pot or Dutch oven, and add cinnamon stick and yellow mustard seeds. Set heat to medium, and slowly temper the oil until the mustard seeds start to sputter.
  6. Add sliced onions, turn up the heat and begin to caramelize, making sure not to burn. If the onions start to stick and turn dark on the bottom, add in a bit of water, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally.
  7. Once caramelized, add turmeric, red chilli powder, sugar and curry leaves to the onions, and mix well.
  8. Add one cup of water to deglaze pan, scraping with a wooden spoon to lift off any bits that stuck on the bottom of the pot.
  9. Add lamb ribs with all of the marinade to the pot, and stir gently. Add enough water to just cover ribs.
  10. Turn the heat up until just before the liquid comes to a boil. Cover with a lid, or use foil to create a tight seal. Place in the oven for about 3½ hours.
  11. Once cooked, remove from oven and allow to rest for about an hour.
  12. After resting, gently pull the lamb out and set aside. Using a blender/stick blender, puree the braising liquid to desired smoothness, or leave it as is, if you prefer it chunkier.
  13. Cook down braising liquid until a rich curry sauce is formed. Add a touch of ghee if desired, and salt to taste.
  14. Add lamb back to finished vindaloo sauce, and warm through.
  15. Plate lamb ribs on a serving platter, and garnish with cilantro, onion slices and lime.

If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, use a spice/coffee grinder, or create a makeshift mortar and pestle with a large, heavy Ziploc bag (make sure there is no air in the bag when sealed), and a crushing implement (a rolling pin, or an empty wine bottle works great – be sure to use the bottom surface when grinding).

Read about Chef Amit Bangar here

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