Mutton Haleem

Mutton pieces slow-cooked with an array of dals and spices—a Ramzan speciality.

  • Cooking time
    4 hours
  • Calories
Recommended by
members who rated this recipe on Youtube

Haleem is closely associated with Ramzan in Calcutta. The meat and grains are gently simmered in a giant hnari (cauldron) for the entire day and are ready to be relished after the evening prayers. Haleem is usually had on its own, or sometimes with tandoori roti or naan. Many Calcuttans, irrespective of religion (even the ones not fasting), flock in front of New Aaliah in Chandni Chowk, Arafat near Eliot Road, Aminia, Arsalan, and Shiraz for haleem.

This recipe for mutton haleem has been adapted for cooking at a small scale at home. The use of pressure cooker cuts down on the cooking time at the cost of flavour and texture. To make up for that we are cooking the grains in a concentrated mutton stock made from paya (trotters of a goat). The slow simmering of bones and connective tissue over a long time extracts a lot of flavour and gelatin into the stock. This gelatin is what gives haleem its mouthfeel and consistency. If you don’t have the patience, you could skip this step and just use water. It will still taste great.

Books in this recipe

No items found.
Like the work we do? Help keep this site ad-free by making a donation.


5 servings
  • 150 g whole wheat grains (soaked 24 hrs)
  • 50 g barley (soaked 24 hrs)
  • 10 g moog dal (soaked overnight)
  • 10 g mosur dal (soaked overnight)
  • 10 g chholar dal (soaked overnight)
  • 10 g arahar dal (soaked overnight)
  • 10 g kalai dal (soaked overnight)
  • 10 g rice (soaked overnight)
  • 1 kg mutton (fat and bones, meat from the leg)
  • 5 g coriander powder
  • 5 g cumin powder
  • 5 g turmeric
  • 3 g red chilli powder
  • 50 g mustard oil
  • 40 g ginger (paste)
  • 20 g garlic (paste)
  • 2 tsp shahi gorom moshla
  • ½ tsp kababchini powder
  • 20 g salt
  • 50 g birista (fried onions, from ~150 g raw onions)
  • 5 green chillies
  • 1.5 L water (for cooking mutton)

For the stock

  • 500 g paya (goat trotters)
  • 100 g onions
  • 2 L water

For boiling wheat and barley

  • 30 g onions
  • 6 g garlic
  • 4 pcs bay leaves
  • 1 tsp shahi gorom moshla
  • 10 g salt
  • 1.5 L stock


  1. Soak wheat and barley for 24 hours. Soak moog dal, mosur dal, chholar dal, arahar dal, kalai dal, and rice overnight.
  2. To make stock, add goat trotters, onions, and water to a saucepan. Simmer on the lowest heat for 3 hours. Once done, strain and set aside.
  3. Roughly chop onions and garlic. Add soaked wheat and barley, chopped onions and garlic, bay leaves, shahi gorom moshla, and mutton stock to a pressure cooker. Pressure cook until grains are soft. These usually take a long time; be patient. Ours took 1 hour.
  4. Lightly toast kababchini in an iron skillet. Grind to a fine powder.
  5. In a small bowl, mix cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, and red chilli powder.
  6. Heat a pan well and add mustard oil. Once oil turns hot, fry mutton in a single layer until brown. Browning the mutton will increase the haleem's flavour. Set aside.
  7. Add mustard oil, and once hot, add the spice mix. Fry for a minute; be careful not to burn the spices.
  8. Add garlic and ginger paste. Fry until the raw smell of spices disappears. This will take roughly 3 minutes.
  9. Add fried mutton pieces. Mix with the spices. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes. Cover and stir intermittently.
  10. Add birista, whole green chillies, and soaked rice and dals. Mix well. Cover and cook.
  11. In the meantime, whisk the barley and wheat that you boiled earlier in the pressure cooker. Whisk until it breaks down; you can use a blender too if you want.
  12. Remove the whisked barley and wheat from the pressure cooker and add the mutton.
  13. Add water to the kadai in which you were cooking the mutton. Now, add this flavourful water to the pressure cooker. Pressure cook mutton until tender. Ours took 45 minutes.
  14. Once done, remove the mutton pieces from the gravy. Save the gravy for later.
  15. Add the boiled and whisked wheat and barley to the kadai. Add the gravy. Mix them well and bring to a boil.
  16. In the meantime, separate the bones and break mutton into smaller pieces. Whisk the contents of the kadai. Add mutton and give everything a gentle stir.
  17. Cook everything on low heat for 15 minutes.
  18. For garnishing, julienne ginger, chop coriander leaves, and slit green chillies. Heat ghee in an iron skillet until it turns smoking hot. Add ginger and green chillies. Fry for a few seconds. Pour the hot ghee onto the haleem. Sprinkle birista and chopped coriander leaves on top. Give everything one last mix.
  19. Serve with some more julienned ginger, chopped coriander leaves and a squeeze of lime.

Recipe discussion

Did this recipe help you cook something that made you happy?

At Bong Eats, we are working to standardise Bengali recipes, and present them to the world in a way that anyone, anywhere will be able to cook Bengali food with confidence—even if they have never tasted it before. We want the world to know that there is Indian food beyond tikka masala.

A lot of time and money goes into creating precise recipes such as this one. We don't want to depend on advertisements that track our viewers' activities through third-party cookies; we do not want take sponsorship money from companies that don't make subpar products.

You can help us make this a sustainable venture that can employ talented local writers, editors, photographers, recipe-testers, and more. Donate to keep us going.

Make a One-time donation

Help us keep Bong Eats free and open for everyone by making a one-time contribution. You can donate as much as you want. No amount is too little.

Become a member ⭐️

Join to get access to a vibrant private community of people who full of people who love to cook, feed and eat. Get answers to your questions about recipes, techniques, where to find ingredients from fellow members. If you love cooking, this is the place for you.

Monthly LIVE cookalongs
Shiny new private forum
Adda after every video release
Personalised recommendations
✨ See Membership Perks ✨
Art by Ritwika
A fun, private community for enthusiasts of Bengali food

We're building a community

With Bong Eats adda we are trying to create a quiet corner on the internet for people who love nothing more than cooking and feeding people. The focus is naturally on Bengali and South Asian food, but as anyone who has spent time with food and its history knows, everything in food is interconnected. Nowhere is this more true than in Bengal, the melting point of so many cultures of the world—home to the first "global cuisine", as food historian Pritha Sen puts it. If that sounds like just the place you have been looking for, come help us build this space together. We are just getting started.

Join now
Join our 220+ strong community

🧣 Winter 🫛

Bakes & Roasts

Posted on
December 21, 2023
Bong Eats

Winter is here. It is time to get baking. Here are some ideas, both savoury and sweet.

Read More »

✨ What's new?

View all »

Kumro Dogar Pachmishali

Pumpkin vine cooked with a medley of vegetables

  • 90 mins
  • 223
Viewers liked this

Koi Komola

Koi fish cooked with fresh orange juice and seasonal tangerines.

  • 1 hour
  • 214
Viewers liked this

Kochur Loti Chingri diye

Taro stolons cooked with mustard and prawns

  • 90 mins
  • 170
Viewers liked this

Potoler Khosha Bata

A spicy, fudgy mash made of pointed gourd (potol) peels.

  • 60 mins
  • 90
Viewers liked this
See all New recipes »
View all »

Shami Kabab

Boiled and ground red meat, pan-fried into round meat patty— A Ramzan or Eid speciality

  • 3 hours
  • 260

Mutton Haleem

Mutton pieces slow-cooked with an array of dals and spices—a Ramzan speciality.

  • 4 hours
  • kcal

Bohri Keema Samosa

Deep-fried pastry of thin, whole-wheat wrappers filled with mince meat or lentil mixture—a Bohra Muslim speciality

  • 2 hours
  • kcal
View all »

Pressure-cooker Mutton Curry

Bengali mutton curry, cooked in a pressure cooker, with tender pieces of meat and potatoes, and a light, flavourful broth.

  • 2 hours
  • 653

Mangsher Ghugni

The well-loved east India snack ghugni (white chickpeas), cooked with chunks of mutton

  • 90 minutes
  • 294

Mutton Burra Kabab

Double chops of mutton, marinated with spices and creamy yoghurt and roasted until juicy and smoky.

  • 1 hour
  • kcal