Introduced during the colonial period by the chefs of Indian Railway, this Anglo Indian mutton curry had been served to the first-class passengers of Indian railway at that time. Railway Mutton Curry was first served on the Blue Train which ran between Victoria Terminus and Calcutta (now Kolkata) via Allahabad (as said by Ms Bridget White Kumar, an Anglo-Indian cuisine expert).
Alongside with Mutton Dakbunglow, this dish too has its origin in the British era. The legend has it that once a drunk British officer paid a sudden visit to the pantry section of a particular train where the cooks were having their meals. As, most of the cooks were Bengali, the dish that they were having is Pathar Mangsho. The Officer insisted to have it but the cooks knew that it would be too spicy for him. One of the cooks had an idea and he whisked some curd and added to the curry to mellow down its spiciness. It is said that the officer loved it so much that he started demanding for the same more often.
That was the time when the cooks unofficially served the Railway Mutton Curry for the very first time. Later, they found out a more better way to substitute curd and added coconut milk. Gradually, it became very famous among both the Britishers and Indians. The dish gained so much popularity that the Indian railway started serving the same to it first class passengers.
Railway Mutton Curry can be seen as the mild version of Mangshor Jhol or Kosha Mangsho. The coconut milk is the game changer here. Goes perfectly with gorom bhat (steamed rice) or even with roti/naan, this dish can be made by adding both coconut milk and curd or just coconut milk. I prefer to add just coconut milk and it is my family favourite dish. This Naboborsho (Bengali New Year), here I am again with this delectable Anglo-Indian dish. While I get ready to welcome my guests with this, you go ahead a have a look at the recipe given below.
- 500 gm mutton (curry cut)
- 1 large onion, roughly chopped
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 1 large potato, diced
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 5 green chillies, slitted from middle
- 1 table-spoon ginger-garlic paste
- 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder
- 1 tea-spoon cumin powder
- 1 tea-spoon coriander powder
- 1 tea-spoon Kashmiri red chilli powder
- 3 table-spoon mustard oil
- a handful chopped coriander leaves
- salt, according to taste
- 1.5 cup warm water
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 dried red chillies
- 1/2 tea-spoon fennel seeds
- 1/2 tea-spoon cumin seeds
- 3 green cardamom
- 2 black cardamom
- 5 cloves
- 1 star anise
- 1 javitri
- Wash and pressure cook the mutton to 5 whistles. Once the pressure cools down, keep aside the boiled mutton along with its stock.
- Heat oil in a pan and temper with all the ingredients mentioned in For Tempering section. Allow them to splutter.
- Now, add onion and sautè until it turns golden brown.
- Add ginger-garlic paste, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, Kashmiri red chilli powder and salt. Sprinkle some water and stir on low flame for 3 minutes.
- Add tomato and stir until it gets blended.
- Now, add potato and give a quick mix. Add water and cover the lid. On a medium flame, cook until the potato is done.
- Once the potato is done, add the mutton with its stock. Mix properly and cook for another 10-15 minutes on a low flame.
- Now, open the lid and add coconut milk. Give a quick mix. Stir and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle the chopped coriander leaves and turn off the flame.
- Cover the lid and let it rest for 10 minutes. Your Railway Mutton Curry is ready to be served now.
My Naboborsho is sorted with this amazing colonial dish and I am just about to welcome my guests 🙂 With that said, Wishing you a very Happy Bengali New Year, Shubho Naboborsho!!!
Enjoy this mutton curry and do drop me a comment giving your feedback about this recipe. You can also tag me on Instagram using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks.