One-Pot Wonders

Creamy Lamb Leg with Cashew

February 10, 2022
2 Ratings
Photo by Mariam Sodawater
  • Prep time 8 hours 10 minutes
  • Cook time 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

Slow cooking gives Lamb leg super soft meat that is literally falling off the bones. Cook it throughly until super tender.


This recipe is of 3 pounds lamb leg, now you must be wondering, why my mutton leg is skinny. It's common practice to trim extra meat from the sides of the leg.
So, the leg is reduced to half the original weight and the meat close to the bone is softer. I also ask the butcher to break it from the joint so I can fit it in my pot.
You can also use the same technique and trim the extra meat. You can use extra meat to make lamb mince or just use boneless mutton for grilling on barbecue nights.

Regardless of the recipe, always marinate mutton leg for 12-24 hours in the fridge with spices and a few spoons of yogurt. The good bacteria in yogurt helps in tenderizing. While commercial tenderizers and a few natural tenderizers like raw papaya dissolve the tissues of meat making them a bit mushy after cooking. The meat loses its delight of biting into soft tender juicy tissues. On contrary, yogurt keeps meat tender without breaking the tissue.

So, this long marination together with slow cooking provides far better results than the usual tenderizer and high heat cooking.

This is a slow cooker recipe, I cooked mutton leg for 3 hours on very low heat. But, the cooking time may vary depending on meat type, age of animal, altitude, size, the thickness of skillet, and so on.

The rich and creamy gravy along with bone soft meat that is about to fall from bone is the delight of this dish.

This recipe is adapted from my cashew chicken recipe at —Mariam Sodawater

What You'll Need
  • Marination
  • 3 pounds lamb leg
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • ¾ tablespoons ginger paste
  • ¾ tablespoons garlic paste
  • tablespoons minced green chilies
  • Salt to taste
  • Gravy and Tempering
  • 4 tablespoons oil, divided
  • ¼ cups Cashew nut powder, more whole cashew for garnish
  • ½ tablespoons coriander seed, dry roasted and grounded
  • ½ tablespoons cumin seed, dry roasted and grounded
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • ½ cups milk
  • ½ tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 5 pieces dried whole chili
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves
  1. Marination
  2. To prepare lamb leg for marinating, take a fork and poke lamb leg from all sides.
  3. Mix green chili, ginger, paste, garlic paste, salt, and yogurt in a bowl. Apply yogurt mixture all over the lamb leg. Then marinate for 8-12 hours in the refrigerator.
  1. Gravy and Tempering
  2. In a thick bottomed wide pan, take lamb leg and fill water to immerse barely half of the lamb leg. You’ll need to turn lamb leg from side to side after every 40 minutes. Cook for about 2-3 hours on slow heat until very tender and water dries completely.
  3. Now, add 2 tablespoons oil, cashew, coriander, and cumin powder in lamb leg pot and sear lamb leg on medium heat by turning from side to side for 3-4 minutes until lightly golden.
  4. Finally, add whipped yogurt and milk, bring it to boil. Then cover the pot and simmer for 7 minutes on low heat until oil separates on sides.
  5. In another pan, fry cumin, coriander, and dried red chilies for 1 minute. Pour the tempering over the lamb leg and cover the pan. Serve hot and garnish with cashew halves.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Mariam Sodawater
    Mariam Sodawater
  • katemcd

3 Reviews

katemcd December 1, 2022
This turned out AMAZING! Except I had to improvise, as there were no cashew quantities in the ingredient list nor any instruction on what to do with them except sprinkling them over the top at the end. There was something on the list "1/4 cups more for garnish"--maybe that referred to cashews? In Step #2, I removed the lamb to make a sauce before putting it back in.

To make the sauce, I took 1/4 cup of ground cashews and the rest of the ingredients into the pot, then crusted the lamb (adding the other 1/4 cup of ground cashews along with the toasted and ground corriander and cumin to make the crust), and seared this in another pot/pan that didn't have liquid in it. Then I added the seared lamb back to the sauce along with the yogurt/milk mixture and followed steps 3 and 4 as written. I have NO idea if this was the correct way to do it, but it turned out amazing! Maybe I read it wrong, but it was a bit confusing!
Mariam S. December 1, 2022
Hi Kate, thanks for trying this recipe. I’ve updated the cashew quantity. The 1/4 cup was ground cashew. Crusting and searing the lamb leg is actually a better idea, with one extra pot but totally worth it.

I’m sure, it must be delicious. Thanks for the genuine and detailed feedback.
Mariam S. February 10, 2022
Try this ethnic recipe with creamy cashew flavors. This is mild tasting creamy reacipe that is finger licking good. You can switch curry leaves for other herbs like rosemary.