Caribbean Curried Goat




About: I've been posting Instructables since the site's inception, and now build other things at Autodesk. Follow me for food and more!

This is absolutely mind-blowingly good.

Goat basically tastes like lamb, but is far leaner. (Lamb is the fattiest of the red meats.) It's very popular in a variety of different countries' cuisines, but for some reason has yet to gain a real following in the US.

This recipe is inspired by the curried goat roti from Penny's Caribbean Cafe. While Penny doesn't share her secrets, this tastes awfully similar. Go get yourself some goat (or lamb if you must) and try it out!

Step 1: Gather Tools and Ingredients

large pot (mine is 8 quarts)
wooden spoon
cutting board & knife

5 pounds goat, with bones1, cut into stew chunks
5 large onions, chunked
5 T curry powder
5 boullion cubes and water, or equivalent in stock
black pepper
~1/4c marsala or sherry (drinkable stuff; NOT the salted nastiness they sell for cooking)
bay leaves
3 carrots, minced (optional)
1/2 c split peas or red lentils (optional)
1-5 seranno peppers, minced (optional, for spiciness)
1-2 cloves garlic, grated (optional)

1 Yes, the bones are absolutely necessary. They add gelatin and lots of flavor, so even if you're not a fan of bones please leave them in. We'll be cooking the meat until it basically falls off the bones anyway.

Step 2: Chop Veggies

Peel your onions and chop into big coarse chunks.

This is partially because I am lazy, and partially because we'll be cooking the stew for a long time, and smaller onions would basically disappear.

If you're using carrots and hot peppers chop them up and add them now too, but be sure you've minced them into fairly fine bits.

Step 3: Saute

Saute onions in a bit of hot oil with the bay leaves. Add carrots and hot peppers if you're using them, and a sprinkling of black pepper.

As the onions soften and the bottom of the pan starts to brown, add the boullion cubes and stir. When the onions have caramelized and the whole thing starts to stick to the pan, add a splash (~1/4c) of marsala and stir/scrape it about to deglaze the pan. (This added liquid helps you save the fond, or tasty brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. It's of critical flavor importance - see notes on the Maillard reaction in step 5.)

Add the meat and half the curry powder, and stir to coat and brown the meat. Add a bit more marsala if necessary to keep things from sticking.

Step 4: Add Everything Else

If you're going to use the split peas, now's the time to add them. I don't usually bother, since the gelatin from the bones makes for a nice thick consistency even without adding beans, and they really doesn't seem to change the flavor very much. Your mileage may vary; try it and see what you like.

Add the rest of the curry powder and stir things about. When it starts to stick again add the water and deglaze again. Pour in just enough water to cover the meat, and leave a cup full of water near the pot to refill as it boils off. You want the meat to stay wet during the entire cooking process.

In the picture below I've dropped in another boullion cube because they didn't all make it in with the onions. The details really don't matter too much in this dish - it cooks long enough that you've got LOTS of leeway to taste and modify.

Step 5: Cooking, and the Maillard Reaction

Simmer your stew for about about 2 hours, stirring and adding water as needed. Check the meat periodically - we're aiming for fall-off-the-bone, melt-in-your-mouth tender.

You may put the lid on to bring it up to temperature more quickly - if so, be sure to leave the lid cocked to allow steam to escape, and remove the lid once you've reached a simmer. I use the wooden spoon as a handy prop.

You can also speed the cooking process by using a pressure cooker; however, I wouldn't recommend doing the entire thing under pressure, as there are significant flavor differences when the simmered stew reacts with the air.

The Maillard reaction, an interaction between carbohydrates and amino acids under high heat, is the source of all kinds of wonderful brown colors and complex meaty flavors. However, Maillard browning needs temperatures of at least 250F, which usually only happens under dry heat. Even the higher temperatures reached during pressure cooking don't produce much in the way of Maillard reaction products, and you won't get them in a crock pot slow cooker.

What does this mean for you?
1) It means you should leave the lid off of your pot as it cooks, since all the tasty Maillard reactions will be taking place at the top of the pot, as a bit of skin forms around the outside edges. Keep mixing this skin and the dry bits that stick to the side of the pot back in, as they've got the best flavor. Think of it as a fond, just formed on the side of the pot.
2) If you do use a pressure cooker, be sure to add some extra lid-off cooking time on either end of the process. About 30 minutes (at 15psi, natural release) should be sufficient for making the meat melty, and another 30+ minutes of boiling with the lid off should allow for some nice Maillard reaction products to form around the edges.

Note that this business with Maillard reactions, lids, and alternate cooking methods applies to most any stews or soups - leave your lids off and scrape the sides to take best advantage of this tasty browning reaction.

Step 6: Finish, Serve, and Store

How do you know when it's finished?

1) The meat is incredibly tender and falling from the bones.
2) The sauce tastes richly meaty (from those Maillard reactions!)
3) The sauce has reduced, and is as thick as you want it to be.

Now just taste it, and adjust the seasonings. You can add a bit more salt, pepper, allspice, marsala, or curry as desired; if you add more marsala or curry, be sure to let it simmer another 5 minutes to properly assimilate the flavors.

Serve either in bowls as a stand-alone stew, or over rice or the starchy substance of your choice. The bones are delicious, so don't be shy about picking them up and sucking the marrow out for extra flavor. The cartilage on the ends of the joints should have become wonderfully melty as well, so try it - you may like it.

As with most stews and curries, this one becomes even better after overnight refrigeration. It will likely coagulate in the fridge (remember all that gelatin?) but will resume its stewy consistency upon reheating.



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42 Discussions


3 years ago

I'm making this right now. My fiance and his brother walk in to our house says omg smells so good. When I told them I was making goat, his brothers like white girl can cook. I can't wait to try this. Even my mom's happy I'm making it, everyone loves goat. If it turns out I will have to add this to my carribean foods. Just like jerk chicken


Oh dear- I fear for my waistline after making this last night. I had been craving curried goat, all day, went to the local market and bought goat meat, then searched high and low for a good recipe. Yours is by FAR the best version- with such a richness of flavor other versions are lacking; I've tried other recipes before and haven't been able to make it as wonderfully as I had once gotten from my Caribbean roommate- but, you NAILED it!!! I think the Marsala, and super slow heating for the Maillard Rxn, made the difference. I halved the recipe, (due to the fact that I've been disappointed before) and didn't want to waste good food money if the recipe didn't turn out right. Needless to say- next time I'll DOUBLE it and freeze portions so I can eat it whenever the mood strikes- which will probably be often.
The only difference between your recipe and my roomie's was he made it with coconut oil instead of vegetable (so did I) and his version was somewhat creamy- so I added 1/4 cup of plain Greek yogurt at the last minute to finish it off. The result was so delicious that my somewhat finicky husband (who initially said, "Yuck- Curried Goat, again") actually asked me to make enough for both of us for dinner- SOON! This is the highest compliment you can receive from him.

2 replies

Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

Fantastic, I'm glad to be of help!

I like the idea of using coconut oil, it would certainly add good flavor. You could probably add a bit of coconut cream in place of the greek yogurt at the end, too.


Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

Coconut cream would have been the item of choice, but I was out, so I looked at it as bonus protein, as well as creaminess, with plain Greek Yogurt.


6 years ago on Introduction

It would be nicer if there were actually cook times for each step and what flavour of bouillon cubes were used.


7 years ago on Introduction

I called up Publix to see if they had any goat. They checked and said that they had a box leftover from an order, maybe 10-20 lbs, that they would let me have for 99 cents a lb. Got there, and it was 45 lbs. Still bought it!!! Luckily I have a large freezer. I have the curry in a crockpot, but I may have put too much liquid in...I used 2 15 oz cans of beef broth. Should I have my son strain out some of it? I don't want curry goat soup. Thanks, Ted

3 replies

Geez. I'd have drop kicked my granny out of the way for 99¢ goat meat. It sells for four times that in Central and North Florida.


Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

I'd recommend draining the liquid, then cooking it down separately and adding it back into the curry.

How did it turn out?


Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

I screwed it up, because I thought I was smarter. I cooked it all day in the crockpot, and that was the wrong thing to do. You want it cooked down...but not to mush. My bad...and since I have so much goat meat, I will try it the right way--your way--soon.


7 years ago on Introduction

I am from jamaica so i eat this alot, its lovely we normally put a piece of ginger in the pot just to ensure that your tummy doesn't hurt due to the high quality of the curry

1 reply

8 years ago on Introduction

I butchered a goat for a man from Trinidad... He made a batch of this for me. It is absolutely fantastic... The meat truly does fall of the bone! He made mine without the peppers (he uses habeneros); I would recommend adding the peppers if you are a fan of a little heat.


8 years ago on Introduction

What flavor boullion cubes do you use and how much water do you use ?? Thanks for all your helps !


8 years ago on Introduction

Just wanted to make a few comments - for one, goat is actually very popular here in the "deep south", just don't go too south, since Florida is "south of the south" ;) And #2, Wow, that sounds like some good goat - I think I'm gonna have to make a pot tomorrow - not enough time before dinner tonight! Thanks for the 'ible.


9 years ago on Introduction

I am making this as I type. So far, so good! I could not find any marsala or sherry, though. I was mocked thoroughly on my favorite cooking board as a result. Yay! I'm using white wine instead, hopefully it's close enough. I'm also adding a little bit of red chili powder because the "mild" curry powder wasn't joking around when they said it wasn't spicy (I was expecting just a lower degree of culinary inferno). I'm also halving this recipe. We are but two here chez Wolfbird.. But I suspect my boyfriend would have preferred I had made it all, since it's starting to smell really good. I will serve it alongside rice and a half-serious attempt at potato masala ( -- except that I'm missing a few of Sanjay's ingredients).


9 years ago on Introduction

This looks awesome! This is exactly what I should've done with the first cuts of goat I got. They were cut into chunks with the bone. I tried braising, but stewing is the way to go. Again great pics! I'm going to make this recipe this fall when it starts to get cold. It will give me something to look forward to when the temps go down. Thanks!


Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

Ahh yes,nothing better than "dancehall curry goat "....there in lies the difference in true taste. Not an overkill with curry powder but a masterfull dish of the best of curry goat that has been cooking and simmering all day long and now ready for the after hours of dancehall niceness.