Chef Will Bradof’s Christmas Dinner

Every family has their own special traditions during the Christmas holidays. Some are new, some are old, some have been passed down from generation to generation. Owner of Trio and Local, Will Bradof, says that his family’s Christmas day dinner recipe comes from The India House Club in New York City and has been in tradition for 20 years. His dad always leads in the reading of Dylan Thomas’s “A Child’s Christmas in Whales” as they enjoy a delicious lamb curry.
Chef Will Bradof’s Christmas Dinner


    For the curry:
  • 6 pounds lean, boneless shoulder of lamb cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes [Bradof usually doubles the lamb and there is always enough sauce. I also use boneless leg of lamb.]
  • 1/2 cup peanut, vegetable or corn oil, approximately
  • 3/4 pound carrots, peeled, quartered and thinly sliced, about 2 cups
  • 5 celery ribs without leaves, coarsely chopped, about 2 cups
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped onion
  • 2 large tart apples, cored and quartered, about 4 cups
  • 1/2 cup canned sweetened and shredded dried coconut
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 8 tablespoons curry powder, more or less to taste [Dad always says my curry is too mild]
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 7 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup chutney
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • For the rice:
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 4 cups raw rice
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 sprigs parsley
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • Salt to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  • Use two skillets for this, one to brown the meat in batches, the other to receive the meat after the cubes are browned. (I use a big pot for the second skillet.)
  • Pour about 1/4 cup of oil into the first skillet to brown the meat.
  • Add about 1/4 of the cubed meat and cook to brown on all sides.
  • When browned, transfer the pieces to the second skillet.
  • When all the pieces are browned and transferred, add any remaining oil to the first skillet.
  • If there is no more oil, add about 2 tablespoons.
  • Add the carrots, celery, and onions and cook stirring occasionally.
  • As the vegetables cook in the first skillet, add the cubed apples and coconut to the meat. Add the cooked vegetables, garlic, bay leaves, curry powder, flour and tomato paste to the meat.
  • Stir to blend well.
  • Add the chicken broth and stir to blend.
  • Add the chutney.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Cover and place in the oven.
  • Bake one hour.
  • Remove from the oven.
  • Lift up the meat with a slotted spoon and transfer the pieces of lamb to a casserole.
  • Add the sauce, a little at a time, to the container of a food processor or blender to get a fine puree. [THIS IS AN ESSENTIAL STEP THAT SHOULD NOT BE IGNORED!!! TRUST ME! It may seem like a pain in the neck, but it is worth it.]
  • As the sauce is processed and becomes smooth, add it to the lamb pieces.
  • At this point the curry can be frozen.
  • Before serving, bring to a boil and add the cream, if desired.
  • Serve with baked rice and additional chutneys, if desired.
  • For the rice:
  • Preheat oven to 400 F.
  • In a large casserole or Dutch oven, heat the butter.
  • Add the onion and cook, until wilted.
  • Add the rice and water.
  • Tie the parsley, bay leaves and thyme sprigs into a bundle and add it.
  • Salt to taste.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Cover and place in the oven.
  • Bake 17 minutes.

About Author

Born and raised in south Georgia, Casey moved to Colorado after graduating college and has now settled in Jackson, where she loves to snowboard, hike and water-ski. She's a true southern food junkie, but loves every type of food (there's nothing she won't eat) and will try anything once. A lifelong love of food combined with a Journalism degree made her realize she could combine her two passions which led her to the position of Editorial Assistant. She loves hot sauce and anything pickled, and you'll always find her on the hunt for the perfect Bloody Mary.

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