This savory, easy Dutch-oven Marrakesh Lamb Korma bakes in a rich sauce of coconut milk, tomatoes and spices. A great company meal, and gluten and dairy-free. An easy prep that requires no last-minute cooking except to assemble your side dishes.
I enjoy curries of all kinds – in fact this is the tenth recipe on my blog that contains some type of curry: Indian, Thai, Japanese, you name it. And I’m a real fan of baking stews in my Lodge cast-iron Dutch oven, so this dish is the perfect hybrid of the two.
My friend Rhoda recommended the Marrakesh Curry Seasoning from the Savory Spice Shop in Denver, and this was my first opportunity to use it. Rhoda actually suggested it for a chicken curry — I’ll get to that one soon!
Korma vs Curry?
According to Wikipedia, a korma is defined as a dish where meat or vegetables are braised with yogurt, cream or stock added. It’s usually milder than a curry and the spices are designed to give flavor instead of heat.
Traditionally the meat and vegetables are seared first, then slow-roasted. The Dutch oven method eliminates the searing step, and means you are not adding any oil, which is important to some people.
This stew is naturally gluten-free, which is typical of curries, of course, as they don’t often contain grains. The potatoes thicken the korma a bit but if you want a very thick sauce, you could stir some arrowroot flour into the coconut milk (see note in the recipe).
Also, because my dishes need to be dairy-free, I’ve used coconut milk instead of the traditional yogurt. The coconut milk gives a similar creaminess to the sauce, though it doesn’t have the tartness of the yogurt.
Roasting in a Dutch oven
My cast-iron Dutch oven has overtaken my slow-cooker when I choose how to prepare meat and vegetable stews. You can see this with my old-fashioned beef stew, beef-barley pumpkin stew and Thai massaman curry.
I love how with almost no prep — no searing of the meat or sautéing vegetables! — you will get tender, flavorful ingredients. You need very little cooking skill — a great starter recipe!
Not only that, but I use my Instant Pot to make the saag that goes so well with this stew, so it can’t cook the stew as well.
And the Dutch oven is large enough to easily fit a full pack of lamb chops from Costco, the vegetables to match, and the sauce fixings.
In the series of photos below: ingredients placed in the Dutch oven (this is actually a photo of my beef stew, which is why you can see celery in it); the Dutch oven covered with foil; the Dutch oven with its lid settled on top.
The one challenge for many people is that you need to be home to put the stew pot into the oven at 10:30 am for a 5:30 dinner – not everyone is available to prep the food that late in the morning. If you are at sea level where the stew only needs to cook for 6 hours, you’d need to put it in the oven at 11:30. But if you can make it in advance, it reheats beautifully!
You can probably layer the ingredients however you like, but I use a sequence that works for me. I place the carrots on the bottom as a resting place for the meat. The potatoes go on top of the meat, followed by the onions and any other vegetables. The sauce and seasonings get spread over that.
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We enjoy this korma with Lundberg jasmine rice, swiss chard saag (recipe coming soon!) and a chutney.
If you have a chance to make this recipe, please leave me a comment so I know how it went!
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Marrakesh Lamb Korma
- 3-4 medium carrots peeled and sliced on the diagonal
- 2½ pounds lamb chops or stew meat
- 24 ounces Yukon gold potatoes peeled if desired and cut into chunks
- 1 large yellow onion chopped
- 2 cans full-fat coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder optional
- 2 tablespoons Marrakesh Curry Blend or blend your own, see note
- 1 can diced tomatoes undrained
- 1-2 teaspoons pink sea salt or to taste
- 1/2 cup minced cilantro plus sprigs for garnish optional
- Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.
- Layer the vegetables and the meat into the Dutch oven in this order: carrots, lamb, potatoes, onions.
- Using a small bowl, stir the curry powder into part of the coconut milk. Add more coconut milk and stir. If you want to make your sauce thick, stir in the arrowroot.
- Pour the coconut milk mixture over the meat and vegetables. Use a little more coconut milk to get the last of the curry seasoning out of the bowl. Pour the second can of coconut milk evenly over the other ingredients.
- Pour the tomatoes evenly over the dish, and sprinkle with salt.
- Cover the Dutch oven with foil and seal tightly. Set the lid of the Dutch oven on top of the foil.
- Place in the oven and roast for 6 hours (7 hours at high altitude).
- After roasting, stir the curry and test for salt and spiciness. You can still add a little curry powder or cayenne (optional) if you want it spicier. Garnish with cilantro or offer it on the table. For the batch shown in these photos, I was serving it to someone who avoids cilantro, so we used parsley in the dish.
- Serve as-is or over rice, with saag and chutney on the side. Garnish as desired.
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