An accurate representation of Pakistani meat cuisine is the time of Bakra Eid or Eid-ul-Adha. On that occasion, we cook various meat dishes with multiple recipes according to Pakistani ethnic diversity. Sindhi, Balochi, Pathan and Punjabi are the main ethnic groups in Pakistan and all have their unique way of cooking. From Karahi, BBQ, Namkeen Ghost, and Roasted lamb to Chatkhara Botti every regionality has its separate way of cooking. Among other dishes, the Pakistani Kaleji Recipe is one the leading and most probably the first dish of Eid day. Kaleji is the first that we have cooked after doing Qurbani in our house. There are multiple ways of cooking the Pakistani Kaleji Recipe and all have their charismatic flavour. Here in this article, I’m going to give you our homemade Best Pakistani Kaleji (Liver) Recipe which we have been following for the last two decades.
What is Kaleji?
Kaleji translates as the “liver of any animal,” most commonly beef, lamb, or chicken. Kaleji masala or Kaleji fry refers to the preparation of bite-size chunks of beef or lamb liver with spices such as chile, coriander, cumin, turmeric, garam masala, dried fenugreek, and ginger garlic paste. Masala gravy is often made with tomatoes, onions, and yoghurt. It is typically eaten with naan or roti, rice, or yellow lentil khichdi.
Key Points for Kaleji Recipe:
- Cooking time and technique are the most important aspects of making bhunai kaleji. So pay strict attention to the instructions.
- Resting kaleji after cooking works like a charm: After 4-5 minutes of frying lamb liver. Cover and set aside the pot. Because the liver has a short cooking time, the steam in the saucepan cooks it. Resting causes the liver to lock some fluids inside, keeping your liver fried soft.
- The resting procedure causes the liver to release fluids into the gravy, which we will then burn over high heat. When warming the liver fry before serving, I do this. This is the finest method.
- If you want to create Kaleji Pota, substitute some Kaleji for the Pota in the recipe. Earlier in the tomato gravy, add kidney slices. Allow it to simmer sufficiently before adding the liver chunks.
- Here’s a separate post where I go over everything you need to know about cooking liver and how to deal with accidents.
Ingredients for Pakistani Kaleji Recipe:
- Liver: Because the liver is the key component in the dish, you should be familiar with how to select the liver. Choose a darker, glistening liver that is fresh rather than frozen. It should smell fresh rather than stale. The liver of a calf is superior to the liver of a cow.
- Salt: Salt may drain a lot of juice from the liver, so try to use the majority of the salt after the dish.
- Fenugreek: Fenugreek gives a flavour and scent of Indian curry to the liver curry. But it also aids in the digestion of the liver, which can be tough for older folks to digest.
- Smaller green chillies, such as Thai chilli, are hotter, and I used them to produce green chilli paste. Medium and thick chillies are flavorful and less fiery, making them ideal for garnish.
The Cooking Process:
- I’m making this in a nonstick pan since it has a greater surface area for (bhunai) cooking on high heat, but a wok or pot would also work nicely. Fry onion slices for 7 minutes on low heat until extremely tender, then 1 minute on high heat to make onions light golden. (The slow cooking allows the onions to dissolve readily in the gravy.)
- Add spices and whisk to combine. 1 minute in the oven (Tip: Avoid adding salt at first, although a little salt from ginger garlic paste is OK.)
- Then add the tomatoes, which can be chopped or pureed. Cover and mix thoroughly. On medium heat, cook for 5-7 minutes. When the tomatoes are soft, whisk the gravy over high heat to burn off the tomato water (bhunnofy). (Tip: If necessary, add a little water and continue to boil until the onion and tomatoes are tender, as we will not be cooking much after adding the liver.)
- When the oil begins to separate on the edges of the pan, add the beaten yoghurt and dried fenugreek leaves. Cook for another 2-3 minutes on high. Continue to stir. The gravy is done.
- Cover the lid and add the scrubbed liver. On medium heat, cook for 2 minutes. Remove the cover and season with salt. Cook for another 3 minutes on high heat, stirring constantly.
- Turn off the heat and cover the pot to rest. (The liver has not been fully cooked; it will continue to simmer in a covered saucepan.) Rest for 10-15 minutes to allow the fluids of the liver to seal. Water will be released by the liver.
- To your liver curry, add ginger, chiles, cilantro, and butter. Then, over high heat, reheat and burn any excess water (liver juices). Continue to stir on high until oil is visible on the pan’s edges. If necessary, add 1-2 teaspoons of oil.
- Garnish with parsley and serve immediately.
Serving of Kaleji:
Kaleji tastes best when it is freshly prepared. Unlike other Indian cuisines, leftover kaleji is neither appealing nor nutritious. As a result, always prepare in tiny batches, just enough for one meal.
Kaleji masala goes well with pao, naan, or any bread. It goes well with yellow dal khichri or plain rice. You may also prepare kaleji masala buns with onions and chutney. Kaleji buns are another famous street dish.
Pakistani Special Kaleji (Liver) Recipe
- 1.5 cup oil
- 3 medium (125 gramme) finely sliced 1.5 cup oil 3 medium (125 gramme) finely sliced onions
- 6 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
- 1.5 tablespoons small green chilli paste
- 1 1/2 tablespoon coriander powder
- 1.5 tablespoon coriander powder
- 3 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 3 teaspoons red chilli powder
- 1.5 teaspoons turmeric powder
- 0.75 teaspoons black pepper
- 6 (200 g) pureed or sliced tomato
- 1 cup yoghurt
- 3 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves
- 1500 g (1.1 pounds) lamb or beef
- 3 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoon butter or ghee, optional
- 3 handfuls of coriander leaves, chopped
- 9 medium green chillies, sliced
- 6-inch ginger, sliced
- 6 lemon wedges
- Step 1 Fry the onion in a wok for 7-10 minutes on low heat. Increase the heat to medium and whisk regularly until the onion pieces are very tender.
- Step 2 Mix in the spice list components and give it a good swirl. When the spices begin to crackle, add the tomatoes. Cook for 5-7 minutes, covered, over medium heat. When the tomatoes are soft, whisk them over high heat to remove any remaining tomato water.
- Step 3 When the oil separates on the edges of the pan, add the yoghurt and fenugreek leaves. Sear for 2 minutes more.
- Step 4 Stir in the liver chunks for a minute, or until the colour changes. Cook for 2 minutes on medium heat, covered. Remove cover and sprinkle with salt. Cook for another 2 minutes on high heat, stirring constantly.
- Step 5 Finally, turn off the heat and cover the pot for at least 10 minutes. The steam in the pot will thoroughly cook the liver.
- Step 6 Return to high heat and stir in the butter, green chillies, green coriander, and ginger. Remove any excess water and sear until the oil separates on the edge of the pan. (Bhunofy for around 1-2 minutes.)
- Step 7 Serve right away with lemon wedges.