Cape Malay Lamb Curry recipe

  • Sunday, 15 April 2018
  • Jeanette du Toit

Make your own spicy and delicious Cape Malay Curry – this recipe is great for those chilly rainy nights coming up during the winter.

Instead of using ready-made curry mix, this recipe for Cape Malay lamb curry combines basic spices (ginger, cumin, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves) into one of South Africa’s best curries. The long list of spices may let it sound complex, but is surprisingly easy to make.


  • 500 gram lamb, diced
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 large or 3 medium potatoes, cubed
  • 1 tin (400 gram) tomatoes or 4 fresh tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) turmeric
  • 3 cinnamon quills
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon (1/2 ml) chilli powder (you can increase it to 1/2 teaspoon if you prefer it hot)
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) water
  • Frying oil
  • Fresh coriander leaves to garnish

How to:
Combine meat and spices in a bowl and set aside.

Saute onions in a medium saucepan until it starts to brown, taking care not to burn it.

Add meat, tomato, sugar and water, stir through and simmer for 30 minutes on medium heat.

Add the cubed potato and simmer until the potatoes are soft. Add more water if necessary.

Serve on white rice.


This recipe is in The Cape Malay Cookbook by Faldela Williams

This recipe and photo is from the Rainbow Cooking website, where you will find a collection of mostly South African recipes, both traditional and modern.

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