Recipe: Oxley chef Andrew Carter reveals how to make his unforgettably aromatic lamb curry

Recipe: Oxley chef Andrew Carter reveals how to make his unforgettably aromatic lamb curry

Toronto Life Cookbook Recipe 2013: Lamb Curry

By Andrew Carter
The Oxley

PREP TIME: 28 minutes
ROAST TIME: 1 hour
Serves 6


3 tbsp coriander seed
3 tbsp cumin seed
2 tbsp turmeric
2 tbsp mustard seed
2 ¼ tsp chili flakes
¾ tsp pepper
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp cloves
10 cloves garlic
1 3-inch-long piece of fresh ginger
½ cup white wine vinegar
1 deboned lamb shoulder, about 3 lb
1 19-oz can tomatoes
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 ½ large onions
1 tbsp harissa paste
¾ tsp salt

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Spread spices out on a baking sheet. Toast in centre of oven for 3 to 5 minutes until fragrant. After spices have cooled, pulse in a spice grinder until powdery.

2. Pulse garlic and ginger in a food processor to chop. Scrape down sides as needed and pour in 2 tbsp of vinegar. Set aside remaining vinegar. Continue to pulse until smooth. Cut lamb shoulder into 1-inch cubes and place in a large bowl. Add spices, garlic-ginger mixture and remaining vinegar. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

3. When ready to cook lamb, preheat oven to 350°F. Purée tomatoes in a food processor or blender. Heat oil in a large ovenproof pan set over medium-high. Add onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes until golden brown. Adjust heat if needed. Add lamb. Stir to mix. Add puréed tomatoes. Stir in harissa and salt. Reduce heat and bring to a simmer. Roast, uncovered, in oven for 1 hour until lamb is tender. Stir twice during roasting. Serve over steamed basmati rice with chutney and pappadums.

Toronto Life Cookbook Recipe 2013: Lamb Curry
Deboning a lamb shoulder requires confident knife skills. If you’re not feeling up to the task, order a deboned shoulder from a reputable butcher, like Rowe Farms. 893 Queen St. E., 416-461-4383.

Toronto Life Cookbook Recipe 2013: Lamb CurryANDREW CARTER

Toronto’s gastropub obsession owes a lot to chef Andrew Carter, the Mancunian expat who started the movement with the Queen and Beaver in 2009, then stoked it with The Oxley in 2012. His standout dish is lamb curry, a constant on both menus. The recipe, made with gamey lamb shoulder and lots of garlic, is based on a classic vindaloo you might find in any U.K. curry house. Carter kicks it up a few notches with a walloping dose of house-made harissa paste, which he says gives the dish “an offensive amount of heat.” The result is a fantastically spicy curry that would put even the best Indian restaurants to shame.

Recipes developed by Victoria Walsh. Recipe photography by Raina and Wilson. Illustrations by Aleksandar Janicijevic. Interviews by Meaghan Binstock, Chantal Braganza, Matthew Hague, Peter Saltsman, Courtney Shea and Caroline Youdan.