Paya Curry – Authentic Pakistani Recipe

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Paya curry is another delicious Punjabi recipe, famous in Pakistan as well as in the other regions of the Indian subcontinent. The name of the recipe ‘Paya’ is synonymous with its main ingredient, which means ‘leg’ (trotter) in Urdu/ Hindi. Originated from the combination of South and Central Asian cuisine ‘pacha’, the recipe was adapted to the regional cuisine by the Muslim cooks and given a tint of their own cooking legacy.

Here we are going to cook mutton paya curry. You can also cook the same using the trotters of cow, buffalo or sheep.

Cooking Time
 35-40 minutes 

The ingredients you must have in your hand before preparing paya curry are –

  • Mutton Paya- 4 pcs
  • Wheat flour- 1/4th cup
  • Vinegar-  4-5tbsp
  • Oil- 3-4 tbsp
  • Cloves – 4
  • Small stick cinnamon- 1
  • Black cardamom- 1
  • Green cardamom- 2
  • Bay leaves- 3
  • Onions (sliced)- 2
  • Ginger paste- 1tbsp
  • Garlic paste- 1tbsp
  • Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp
  • Cumin powder- 1tsp
  • Coriander powder- 1tbsp
  • Red chili powder- 2tbsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Ginger julienne and green chilies for garnish
 Step 1: clean the trotters 

The first step towards making good paya curry is of course cleaning them properly. Let’s see how to do that. First wash the paya or trotters properly with normal water. Then take the paya or trotters in a big bowl. Add 1/4-th cup of wheat flour and 4tbsp of vinegar to it. Rub it on the trotters and leave it for 10-15 minutes. After 10-15 minutes, again massage the trotters and rinse them thoroughly for 2-3 times. If there is any hair left, this will clean them and will also finish the raw smell of the trotter.

 Step 2: prepare the spices 

Take 4 cloves, 1 small stick cinnamon, 1 black cardamom, 2 green cardamoms, and  3 bay leaves. We will cook our paya curry in a pressure cooker. So put the pressure cooker on high flame and add 2-3 tbsp oil. When the oil is hot, then add the mentioned spices and stir fry for 30-60 seconds.

 Step 3: Cook the trotters 

Now set the cooker on medium-low heat and add the sliced onions. Fry them till golden. (The tip is not to fry them too much, otherwise they will not melt later on). Once the onions are golden in colour, add the trotters. Drain the trotters properly and ensure that there is no water left in them before adding them to the cooker.

Now add the ginger-garlic paste and salt to taste. Fry them on high flame for 2-3 minutes. After 2-3 minutes, lower the flame and add the turmeric powder, cumin powder, red chili powder, and coriander powder. Fry all the ingredients on low flame for 3-4 minutes. Now increase the heat and add 2-3 tbsp water. Slowly cook the trotters for 8 minutes by adding water little by little.

 Step 4 : Prepare the gravy for paya curry 

Now prepare the gravy. When everything is nicely cooked, add 1 liter of water for a nice, thin consistency. Close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook on high flame till one whistle. Then cook for 12-15 minutes on low flame. After that, we will open the lid and check the trotters. (If you take big trotters, then they will take more time to soften.)

Take a spoon and check the softness of the trotters (Do not overcook them, otherwise the meat will separate from the bones). Turn off the flame when the trotters are tender and nicely cooked, and garnish them with some freshly chopped green chilies and ginger julienne.

What are you waiting for? Just break a piece of sheermal or naan and enjoy it with hot paya curry!

Try another authentic Pakistani recipe – Chapli Kebab

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