Aslam-o-Alakaum My Lovelies !!
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Happy Spring Season!!
It is quite sometime that I have not shared recipe on the blog. Not that I did not cook anything at all or I did not click photos, but just lost the mojo for writing somehow. I have been a bit busy these days but I’m back now and as soon as possible I will keep you updated.
On a fine spring morning while on my morning walk I was pleasantly surprised to see beautiful white and pink flowers in bloom. These were on some of the trees at Race Course Park. I stood under these tree for a while to feel its beauty. It sounded so incredibly unique and the words just came. Aww it does smell amazing!
A mali uncle (gardener) shared some interesting information on this tree and its lovely flowers. The tree is called the Kachnar and the flowers are Kachnar flowers. The flowers of this tree vary in colour from white with pink veins to almost purple, and when in bloom it can take your breath away with its beauty and aroma. (SubhanAllah)
It’s also known as the Orchid Tree and its botanical name is Bauhinia variegate.
Tender Juicy and Flavorful Kachnar Gosht
While buying some veggies at a nearby grocery store, I saw a bucket full of kachnar buds. And I noticed that many people are buying it. I suddenly remembered the childhood memories, how my father loved to eat Kachnar during the spring season. When we were young kids, this dish was a traditional meal at our home. It was bitter, so we used to hate it back then, but now when I know how much better it was from many de-worming medicines I just feel good that our childhood was much healthier and chemical free.
I decided to give this vegetable or herb a try. As I love to cook, especially experimenting with different vegetables. They are relatively expensive as they are only available in spring for a limited period. You would need closed buds to prepare its dish.
My Nani(grandmother) who has more hands-on experience in preparation of this dish said the kachnar need to be washed very well before use to remove the bitter taste.
When cooked, they taste a bit bitter. And are good with meat or as a vegetarian dish-that way you get to taste the real unadulterated flavour of this bud. You can faintly taste the perfume of the flower still captive inside the green sheath, and that is delicious.
So today we will prepare a traditional Pakistani dish: Tender, Juicy and Flavorful Kachnar Gosht.
Bismillah, let’s get started
Ingredients you will need to make it
- Lamb or Mutton
- Kachnar buds
- onion, ginger garlic, tomato, green chilies
- plain yogurt
- spices:(red pepper, coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder and salt)
Check it out the Kachnar Gosht recipe and printable version below!!
Kachnar Gosht Recipe
The best way to welcome the return of spring: Tender Juicy and Flavorful Kachnar Gosht.
- 1-1/2 kg mutton
- 1 kg kachnar buds
- 1/4 cup desi ghee or butter (you can use oil)
- 2 onions (thinly sliced)
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste
- 1 teaspoon garlic paste
- 3 to matoes (finely chopped)
- 2 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon hot spices powder or Garam Masala powder
- salt to taste
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice (optional)
- green chilies (thinly sliced)
- ginger slices
- Clean Kachnar buds, break the fat stems and remove them from the buds. Wash these buds 2-3 times with clean water.
- Boil kachnar flowers in small amount of water use as little as required to cook for 2 minutes.
- Heat butter or ghee in a deep pan or skillet over medium heat.
- Add onions and fry for 3-4 minutes or until translucent.
- Add ginger garlic paste and cook for 30 seconds.
- Now add mutton, Cook and stir for 15 minutes or until meat color changed.
- Now add tomatoes, red chili powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder and salt.
- Mix well.
- Add 2 cups water and cover the pot with a lid and let it simmer on low flame for 1 hour or until meat is cooked thorough.
- Remove lid and cook on high heat for 5-10 minutes or until water dries up and oil come on top.
- Now add kachnar buds and stir fry for 2 minutes. (Don’t over cook)
- Then add yogurt and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Take it out in a serving bowl.
- Garnished with green chilies and ginger slices. Serve and sprinkle with garam masala and lemon juice if this is to your taste. (I think it improves the flavour.) ENJOY!!
Goes great with tandoori roti, naan bread, chapattis, or any other kind of bread, and mint and yogurt raita.
Benefits of Kachnar (Orchid Buds)
Kachnar has many uses in traditional medicine on the subcontinent.
- Its bark is used as an astringent and a tonic.
- It is good for skin diseases, and has been used to treat leprosy.
- A decoction of the bark is used to cure dysentery, while the dried buds are used to cure diahorrea.
- A decoction made from the root of the kachnar is said to prevent people becoming obese.
- An infusion of the flower buds is good to get rid of coughs. etc.
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