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What’s the best way to relish the leg ‘o mutton? We tell you various ways so you can pick and choose

While the winter chill still hangs in the air and the party drinks flow freely, how about treating your guests with roasted leg o’ mutton? No, we are not asking you to serve it in the same old way. There are plenty of unique ways that makes that delicious aroma of raan emanate from your kitchen. Raan, the leg o‘ mutton or leg o‘ lamb as it is called, is traditionally always made from meat of a goat and not a lamb. We present a selection of cooked raans cooked with saffron, smoked with thyme and roasted with Afghani condiments. Take a look:

Text: Saima Afreen & Pics: Suresh and Vinay

Bukhoor and Zafran Raan
Yes, it’s that royal herb and condiment saffron that gives it delicate-yet-strong flavour and colour to the leg o’ mutton. For that typical warm-spicy fragrance bukhoor is added while marinating. Informs chef Inam Khan, “Bukhoor is a kind of food fragrance exotic in nature which gives a nice subtle flavour. For this raan specialty I use sun-dried spices such as juniper and dry thyme.” While he prepares this raan at his restaurant Steak House in Banjara Hills, he adds Himalayan Pink Salt, paprika and cashewnut paste along with yogurt and other spices and leaves it for 12 hours to marinate. It takes him half an hour to roast the meat. He suggests, “You can serve it with grilled or steamed vegetables. Price on request. Details: 69994858

Braised Raan
As the name suggests, at Hotel Marriott chef Yogendar Pal braises the leg o’ mutton. Braising is a slow method of cooking with combination heat which is moist and dry heats. The ingredients used in cooking this leg o’ mutton are: star anise, lamb stock, coriander root, dark soya, cloves, cinnamon, broccoli, sesame oil and honey. Says chef Pal, “The lamb leg which we use for this dish does not weigh more than one kg. It should not be too fatty and should not have any extra tissues attached to it.” It takes a minimum of four hours to braise it. Braising keeps the meat stays extra tender and succulent. Price on request. Details: 27522999

Sajji Afghan Raan 
Well, in movies you may have seen those Afghanis wearing their trademark salwar kurta and biting into those long leg o’ mutton. But now get the taste of Afghani raan traditional style at Kabul Darbar. Says the owner and food consultant Amaan, “Sajji means coal in Dari language. This raan used to be cooked by nomads on coals hence, the name. We use dry fig powder and North East chillies for that exclusive taste. The goat must not weigh more than eight kg, otherwise the meat won’t be tender. We apply olive oil and cook it on burning coals for 35 minutes.” The dry fig powder they use is not available in Hyderabad is sourced out from Afghan.

Raan Jugalbandi

Ever heard of raan stuffed with minced chicken? Well, Sheraton does it for you and names it thus. It takes three hours to cook it in tandoor. It can be savoured with roomali roti. Says chef Kapil Dubey, “We prepare this raan with two types of meat. We marinate the meat for 6-8 hours with our special condiments. After that it’s kept in the oven overnight covered with flour with minimum heat so that the meat gets tender and can be picked just with fingers.” Price: Rs 1,500 per portion. Details: 49251111

Stuffed Italian Leg O’ Mutton 
Want to savour leg o’ mutton Italian style? Park Hyatt,Tre-Forni Bar & Restaurant is the right place for you. They prepare it with a lot of exotic condiments and herbs. A mixture of minced lamb meat, Parmesan cheese, nutmeg, and thyme is prepared and stuffed inside the leg o’ mutton after removing the bone. “We add white wine for that extra taste. It is roasted for 45 minutes,” says chef Daniele Macioce. He serves it with vegetable caponata. Price: on request. Details: 49491235

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