Iranian Curry

This is going to be my dinner tonight.  This dish is traditionally made with lamb, but as I’m not fond of American lamb (too strong for me), I now make this with beef.  This was a dish  we ate often when I lived in Iran as a child.  Iranian lamb is processed under a year of age, and is thus not strong at all, so I could eat this curry made with lamb when we lived there.  But not once we got back to the States, where lamb is processed much older.  😦  This dish is quite simple to throw together and must simply simmer awhile for the flavors to develop.  Traditionally served over wonderful, nutty, aromatic Iranian rice (similar to basmati, but even  better!).  On Atkins we have to avoid the rice, so instead, serve this curry over a bed of grated cauliflower that has been lightly steamed 4 minutes.  Bananas (only for people on Maintenance) seared in butter are GREAT eaten with this particular curry! This is actually quite different from Indian curries, so I hope you like it.   This recipe as written is Induction friendly.  Sometimes dried pitted prunes or a few snipped raisins (if you are to the fruits rung of OWL only) and some walnuts are added to Iranian curries, so have fun with those variations.


1 1/2 lb. slivered lamb, lean beef chuck or sirloin
2 T. olive oil
Enough water just to barely cover the meat
1/2 bay leaf
6 black peppercorns
4 oz. chopped yellow onion
2 T. chopped parsley
2 tsp. high quality curry powder (I use Sharwood’s mild)
1 T. tomato paste
Xanthan gum to thicken

Dash salt to taste

DIRECTIONS:  Brown meat in olive oil over high heat. Cover with water and add remaining ingredients. Simmer covered with lid for about 1 hour or until meat is tender. Time will vary with different meats and thickness used in slivering it up. When your meat is tender, lightly dust the curry with xanthan gum 2-3 times, stirring between each addition to see how thick it’s getting. Stop when you’re satisfied with thickness (usually about 1/8-1/4 tsp total in my experience).

If you need fewer servings, go on and cook the whole recipe, as it freezes well and like Italian spaghetti sauce, it just gets better each time you reheat it!

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION:  Serves 4, each serving has:

290.3 cals,12.6g fat, 3.88g carbs, 1.93g NET CARBS, 1.95g fiber, 38.58g protein, 39 mg  sodium


12 thoughts on “Iranian Curry

  1. Sharon x

    Where would I get xanthan gum from, I live on the uk and never heard of this, where abouts in the supermarket would it be x looks yummy

    1. I would be very surprised if your regular supermarket carried it, Sharon. I would try at a health food store or ask a chemist shop? I order mine on-line at, but I am unfamiliar with UK on-line outlets and sources. I’ll bet you could get some source suggestions from the Atkins UK site: I’ll ask on one of my FB groups with some UK members and see if I get any responses.

    2. My UK buddies said try these sources, Sharon:

      Maureen orders from: Amazon.
      Red Ria said: Waitrose/occado
      Elizaa Do said: Holland & Barrett do high street & mail order too…

    1. Oh, we so love it, too. I’m glad you folks enjoyed it! I’ll share with you a family secret. My mother always served this with butter sauteed bananas sliced in half lengthwise. (think Bananas Foster) You just brown them in the butter to caramelize them on the surface and to allow them to begin to release their banana oil. They are absolutely to-die-for with this curry!! I never post that info. Not because it’s a guarded secret, but because I get tired of the immature “ewwwww, sounds horrible” and they are so high carb. But if you’re at or near goal weight, do try that sometime and you’ll think you died and went to heaven at the combined flavors. They are just marvelous with this curry. 🙂

  2. Theresa

    Hi Peggy! Do you have a particular type of curry powder you use for this? It doesn’t look like the typical yellow curry from the supermarket.

  3. Was never a fan of American lamb as well that’s why I never ate lamb before but when we migrated in NZ and tried the lamb here it all changed, NZ lamb is simply the best never tried the Iranian yet but will give it a shot

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