Safed Maas ~ Rajasthani White Mutton Stew



This month too, I am participating in the Shh Cooking Secretly Challenge. Our state of the month is the largest state of India, Rajasthan, which is located in the northern side. It is home to largest desert in India, as well as many historical monuments and a rich culture. The name of the state when literally translated means “the land of kings” and if you have a look at the history of the state, it surely stays truthful to its name! The state has a robust tourism industry and is a place that is usually on the top end list for destination weddings – the recent famous one being Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas, due to the presence of many castles fit for movies.


The Jaisalmer Chana and the Panchmel Dal are the Rajasthani recipes already on the blog.  The beauty of the cuisine of this state is due to its climatic conditions, the food is such that it uses minimal ingredients and even minimal water. It is a epitome of “cooking with what is available” and “cooking what stays fresh for days”. The cuisine is a mix of Marwari influence – that can be seen in their vegetarian cooking – and the Rajput influence, who were mainly non-vegetarians. Dal Bhati Churma and Kachoris are very synonymous to their cooking, so are sweet dishes like Ghevar. The majority population are vegetarians, in fact, it is said that Rajasthan has the largest vegetarian population in the whole of India.


I am paired with Ashima for this challenge, who herself is a Rajasthan native. I am thankful to have had her, since she was very cooperative and help me choose the ingredients and the recipes as well. However, I ended up cooking something apart from what we had discussed, since the ingredients she gave me – cumin and ghee – were also used in this amazing dish that I ended up discovering called “Safed Maas”.




“Safed Maas” means “white meat”. The dish has heavy Rajput influence. This is said to be prepared when they catch any animal in the wild. The specialty of the dish is definitely its off white color, due to the use of rich ingredients like nuts and cream. It is also called as khorma in many Rajasthani households. As you may see while reading through the ingredients, this dish is truly reserved for occasions. Initially, I had thought of preparing the “Laal Maas”, which is a fiery red mutton curry but in turn ended up making this dish, due to its simplicity and also knowing that my family would accept this more.


As is usual while scouring through the recipes on Google, I found so many variants of this recipe and it left me totally confused. Finally, I decided to use the ingredients that were common in all the recipes. Onion, cashew nuts, cardamom and ginger is an integral part of this gravy. Cream can be switched to yogurt for a lighter version. I have used a mix of milk and cream, and would have added yogurt if I had it in my pantry. For the spice quotient, I have used dry red chillies though you can very well use chopped green chillies instead of it.


Even though it sounds very complicated, in fact it is quite an easy gravy to make. The only time consumed is getting the mutton cooked and keeping ready the paste. The rest of the gravy comes together in no time. This is definitely a gravy to be included into your party menu along with Butter Chicken and the Malaiwala Murg I cooked for the Punjab challenge last month. I served it along with jeera rice but this would be amazing with chapathis or some roomali roti. It didn’t take time to disappear from the pan and was truly relished. As you move on to the recipe, do check out what Ashima cooked from the ingredients I gave her for the challenge…





5 from 6 votes

Safed Maas ~ Rajasthani White Mutton Stew

Course Main
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4
Author Rafeeda


  • 500 gm mutton pieces washed and drained
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 10 cashews soaked in water for 15 minutes
  • 10 almonds soaked in water for 15 minutes
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cardamoms crushed
  • 3 dry red chillis torn (refer notes)
  • 1 small onion minced
  • 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp cream
  • 1 tsp white pepper powder as per spice level
  • Salt to taste


  • Add the washed mutton and salt in a pressure cook. Pressure cook for three whistles on high flame and on simmer for 10 minutes. Switch off and allow the pressure to go on its own.
  • Grind the onion and nuts into a smooth paste and set aside.
  • In a saucepan, heat ghee. Splutter cumin. Add the whole spices and dry chilli and saute for a few seconds.
  • Add the onion and saute till wilted. Do not brown.
  • Add the ginger garlic paste and cook till raw smell is gone.
  • Add in the ground paste along with some water (I pour into the jar and swirl it) and cook till there is no raw smell.
  • Now add the mutton along with all its stock and cook for five minutes.
  • Add in the cream and milk and give a good toss. Allow it to cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Now add the pepper and adjust the seasoning. Serve hot with rice or naan.

Join the Conversation

  1. Must be very flavourful and tasty! Love that creamy gravy too…would be really wonderful to soak some bread with it.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Angie…

  2. The dish sounds so full of flavour! This would be a wonderful treat for meat lovers. 🙂

    You’ve presented the dish so beautifully too.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Priya…

  3. This is the only bland curry we can see in rajasthani cuisine.. Looks so rich and creamy.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Shobhaji…

  4. you are so right RAfee – the essence of rajasthani cuisine is cooking what is locally available and will stay fresh. Heard of only Lal maas, but this dish is new to me. Glad your family liked it.. Can only imagine the gravy must have tasted great with the onions , nuts and spices…

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Kalyani…

  5. 5 stars

    Rightly said about Rajasthani cuisine! We are such a beautiful mix of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes! While Laal Maas is a very popular dish, I had not heard of safed maas 😮 The curry looks creamy and delicious. I am sure it can be used with many vegetarian options too!

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      I guess it would work pretty well with mushrooms or paneer. Thank you so much Ashima…

  6. Lovely presentation..the sabzi looks rich and creamy

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thanks a lot Priya…

  7. A treat for the meat lovers. loved the recipe so rich and flavorful. I think this will work good if add chicken to it or may be vegetarian koftas?? It looks so rich and creamy!!

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Yes I am sure this would be amazing with both the options you have mentioned. Thank you so much Swati…

  8. So rich and creamy gravy with mutton. I am sure it would have tasted delicious

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Narmadha…

  9. 5 stars
    I’ve just checked out two laal mass recipes and the next one is the safed mass! Even in our religious stories its mentioned that the Rajputs cooked meat and Meera a devout Krishna devotee refused to cook it for her husband. The gravy is so creamy and I wouldn’t mind trying it out replacing the meat with jackfruit.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Mayuri…

  10. 5 stars

    Love to read the detail about the recipe. I liked the gravy, looks very rich and creamy, something different from the famous laal maas. I would defintly try this for my family, specially when you have mentioned that it gets ready quickly.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Renu…

  11. 5 stars

    This gravy sounds delicious. I can use it for paneer, mushrooms and even cauliflower. Thanks a lot it is definitely a party pleaser and sounds absolutely yummy.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Archanaji…

  12. 5 stars

    Loved the look of this creamy Safed Maas ! The curry is a treat for meat lovers for sure. Would definitely try out a veg version for my family.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Poonam…

  13. The gravy looks creamy and tasty, I would like to try it by replacing with some vegetable. Nice share from this cuisine.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Jayashree…

  14. Safed Maas! I have had Lal Maas at Jaipur, but this one I have not come across before. Should look out for it next time I travel there, the images you have posted make my mouth water! And you are so right Rafeeda, its so difficult to know which is an authentic recipe when we search online. Every recipe is different from the next. I usually try to check out the background of the blogger who has posted the recipe, to see if he or she has some connection with the cuisine and hence hopefully is giving an authentic recipe. And then I cross check with available cookbooks.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Wow, I love the way you go through your recipe checks, maybe I must start utilizing my cookbooks that way too. Thank you so much Sujataji…

  15. Almonds, cashews used in preparing the masala paste surely made this curry rich in taste. Using milk in gravy surely enhances it’s taste, loved to replace meat with any veggie..

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Vasu…

  16. 5 stars
    That recipe has such a rich gravy, almonds and cashews…my my.
    The royal influvence on the recipe is so evident. I will love to try this with a veggie swap… what do you think is the best swap for the meat?

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      I feel mushrooms or paneer would work best with this gravy. Thank you so much Seema…

  17. Safed maas looks so rich and absolutely delicious. You are right. This type of curry called khurma or korma. Loved the texture of the curry. Can’t wait to try it. Also loved your write up.

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Thank you so much Sujataji…

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