Indian Goat Curry Recipe - Bhuna

Updated on February 11, 2020
Gordon Hamilton profile image

Gordon loves cooking and experimenting with food. He loves making new dishes, particularly with unusual or underused ingredients.

Goat bhuna on turmeric spiced rice
Goat bhuna on turmeric spiced rice

Goat is very much the meat of choice in a great many countries around the world, particularly in the Middle East, many other parts of Asia and North Africa. It is naturally a very fatty meat—not unlike lamb or mutton—so it's ideally suited to long, slow cooking. This Indian style recipe sees the goat meat stewed in a spicy tomato and onion-based sauce in a traditional Indian karahi cooking vessel before being served ultra tender on a bed of turmeric spiced rice.

Diced goat meat
Diced goat meat

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 3 hours 10 min

Ready in: 3 hours 20 min

Yields: 2 servings


  • 1 pound diced goat meat
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 large white onion
  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • 2 teaspoons hot chilli powder
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 2 teaspoons medium curry powder
  • Salt and pepper
  • 14 ounce can chopped tomatoes in tomato juice
  • 1 large green chilli
  • 1 large yellow chilli
  • 1 pint fresh chicken stock
  • 6 ounces (1¼ cups) basmati rice
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 3 tablespoons freshly chopped coriander (cilantro) - 2 tablespoons for bhuna and 1 tablespoon for rice

Goat meat is quickly fried to brown and seal
Goat meat is quickly fried to brown and seal


Pour two or three tablespoons of vegetable oil in to your karahi and put it on to a high heat. When the oil is very hot, add the goat meat and stir fry it around with a wooden spoon until the pieces are evenly browned and sealed all over. This should only take a maximum of a couple of minutes.

Browned and sealed goat meat
Browned and sealed goat meat

Lift the goat meat from the karahi with a slotted spoon to a deep plate or a bowl and set aside for a couple of minutes.

Onion, garlic and spices are added to karahi
Onion, garlic and spices are added to karahi

Peel the onion and cut it in half down through the central core. Lay each half of the onion flat and slice across the way so that each slice will subsequently separate in to strands. Peel the garlic cloves and finely slice or dice. Add the onion and garlic to the hot pot along with the measured out dry spices, some salt and black pepper

Frying onion, garlic and spices
Frying onion, garlic and spices

Stir fry the onions, garlic and spices for a minute or so until the onion strands are separated and softened. This process also serves to cook the harshness and bitterness out of the spices.

Goat is re-added to karahi along with tomatoes and chillies
Goat is re-added to karahi along with tomatoes and chillies

Top the chillies and finely slice. They can be seeded if you wish to limit the heat of the finished dish but it is not necessary. Pour the tomatoes in to the karahi, add the chillies and carefully pour in the chicken stock.

Stock is added to karahi and brought to a simmer
Stock is added to karahi and brought to a simmer

Stir everything around very well to ensure even combination and bring the liquid to a simmer.

Lid is placed on karahi and bhuna is left to slow cook
Lid is placed on karahi and bhuna is left to slow cook

Put the lid on the karahi and adjust the heat to achieve and maintain as gentle a simmer as possible. Cook in this way for three hours, stirring every so often and making sure it is not boiling dry. The finished product should be comprised of a very thick sauce but if the liquid level is getting too low too soon, top up with a little boiling water or stock.

Rice is added to cooking pot and seasoned with turmeric and salt
Rice is added to cooking pot and seasoned with turmeric and salt

15 minutes before the goat bhuna is scheduled to be ready, put the rice in to a large, fine meshed sieve and wash under running cold water. Put it in to a pot and season with the ground turmeric and some salt. Pour in plenty of boiling water, stir well and adjust the heat that you maintain a gentle to moderate simmer for 10 minutes.

Coriander is added to goat bhuna
Coriander is added to goat bhuna

Add two tablespoons of the coriander/cilantro to the goat bhuna and stir it through that it may impart its flavours during the last few minutes of cooking time.

Goat bhuna is ready to serve
Goat bhuna is ready to serve

If necessary, the lid can be left off the karahi at this stage to allow the sauce to thicken.

Drained turmeric rice
Drained turmeric rice

Drain the rice through a fine sieve and let it steam off for a couple of minutes to dry out.

Coriander is added to turmeric rice
Coriander is added to turmeric rice

Return the rice to the pot and add the remaining tablespoon of chopped coriander. Stir it though with a fork which will allow you to fluff up the rice at the same time. Divide the rice between two deep serving plates and spread out to form serving beds for the goat bhuna which should then be carefully spooned on top.

© 2018 Gordon Hamilton


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    • Gordon Hamilton profile imageAUTHOR

      Gordon Hamilton 

      2 years ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Hi, Mary. Yes, I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work in the slow cooker - though I may be inclined to cook it on the bone.

      Re garam masala, I could only think that you search the recipes online and see what one you could prepare from the spices you have available. It is simply a blend of other common spices. You could make a batch that would keep for months at least.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 

      2 years ago from Brazil

      Since this cooks for 3 hours, could this be made in a crockpot? (slow cooker)

      I can get goat meat here so this is something I could make. Any ideas about a substitution for garam masala?


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