Rista (Meatball Curry)

Rista is one of the lip smacking dish of Kashmiri one of the favourite mutton preparation of my family. I had not known about the dish till my Kashmiri friend Neelam shared it from her lunch box . And that was day when I became fan of Kashmiri cuisine. Her mother-in-law is a great cook and through Neelam I collected recipes of all Kashmiri Cuisine and tried it in my kitchen. It was a super hit in my family and extended family. In fact in the family parties and get together,  Rista is a must dish from my kitchen. Here I am sharing this recipe as it is I learnt from my friend. It’s a Mutton ball red curry cooked   with fennel & dry ginger powder,  mainly red kashmiri chili powder, Heeng, Sha zeera & Curd. Onion & garlic is not used in this recipe. It is traditionally cooked in Dekchi or narrow mouthed vessel. However, for quick cooking it is cooked in pressure cooker in slow flame.

Rista F.jpg


  1. Finely Minced Mutton(keema)- 500gm
  2. Roasted gram flour (besan) 10 gms
  3. Curd 100gm whisked.
  4. Fennel(saunf) powder 30gms divided
  5. Dry ginger powder(saunth) 10 gms divided
  6. Kasmiri Red Chili Powder 10gms devided
  7. Aesofodita Heeng powder 1 /2 tspn
  8. Cinnamon stick 1” long
  9. Cloves 5
  10. Black cardamom 2( seeds of 1 grounded)
  11. Sha zeera roasted & crushed 1 /2 tspn
  12. Mustard oil 100gm
  13. Salt 15 gms(to taste)
  14. Water 2-3 cups


If you are mincing the meat at home then wash the mutton(boneless), rinse & dry it before mincing it. Do not wash the minced meat in water.

If you are using ready minced mutton then wash it and rinse it thoroughly. Better to do it in a muslin. Ensure no water remains in the keema.

Transfer the minced meat in a bowl, add gram flour, 1 tspn fennel powder, ½ tspn dry ginger powder, 1 tspn red chili powder,  grounded black cardamom powder  salt to taste.  Mix all together nicely like meat dow.

Make balls out of this minced meat dow and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan, reduce the flame and add heeng, cinnamon stick, whole cardamom & cloves one by one. Immediately add the balls one by one and place it carefully so that it does not break.

The mutton will release its juice, and the balls will change its  colour. Now cover the pan and let the balls cook in its own juices. Keep checking in between till the liquid dries up & oil separates. Fry the balls lightly in this oil about 1-2 mins.

Add rest of the fennel & ginger powder. Add the red chili powder right on the oil & immediately pour ½ cup of water. Be careful, the chili powder should not burn otherwise it will spoil the colour of the curry. So when you add chili powder, keep the water ready in another hand and immediately pour it over the chili powder. Stir and mix the masala with balls.

Now in one hand hold the curd bowl & in another hand hold the turner in another hand. Slowly Pour the curd in the pan and keep stirring the curd continuously otherwise the curd will curdle & spoil the consistency of the curry. Keep stirring the whole thing till the oil separates.

Add rest of the water (till the balls are half submerged) & bring to boil.  Cook covered on slow fire for at least 10-15 mins or till the balls are cooked and water reduces & final consistency should be like  masalas at the bottom & oil on surface.

Lightly dry roast the sha zeera & coarsely ground it and sprinkle over the curry. It gives additional aroma to the dish.

Best served with steamed rice. Could be served with, Naan, Roti or paratha.


3 Comments Add yours

  1. My All time favourite and anyone who tries it fall in love with it!!


  2. Aditya choudhury says:

    Authentic dish at its best ……. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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