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Chicken with coriander and cream

Not a korma - though it is creamy - but something altogether less sweet and far more flavourful, with a wonderful coriander green chilli freshness cutting through the rich fragrant sauce.

4 chicken breasts, skinned and cubed
1 x tin chickpeas
1½ tsp salt
2 tsp ground cumin seeds
2 tsp ground coriander seeds
½ tsp turmeric
1 tsp chilli powder
Freshly ground black pepper
7 cloves of garlic
2.5 cm cube inch of ginger, peeled
1 fresh green chilli, finely chopped
300 ml water
100g onion, chopped
175 g tomato, peeled and finely chopped
4 large tablespoons plain yoghurt
1 tsp garam masala
6 tbsp cream
Big handful of coriander, chopped

Sprinkle ½ tsp of the salt, 1 tsp ground cumin, ½ tsp ground coriander, ¼ tsp turmeric, ¼ tsp chilli powder and some black pepper over the cubed chicken. Mix well and set aside for at least an hour.

Put the garlic and ginger into a food processor, add 125 ml water and blend until fairly smooth.

Heat some oil in a pan and brown the chicken pieces. Remove and set aside in a bowl.

Sauté the onion and green chilli until lightly browned – about 10 minutes. Add the ginger-garlic paste. Stir and fry until all the water has evaporated. Add the remaining 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp coriander, ¼ tsp turmeric and ¼ tsp chilli powder. Stir and fry for about 20 seconds. Now put in the chopped tomato. Stir and cook the spice paste for 3 to 4 minutes, mashing the tomato pieces with the back of a spoon. Add the yoghurt, a tablespoon at a time, incorporating it into the sauce each time before you add any more.

Put in the chicken pieces and any accumulated juices, the chickpeas, the chopped coriander, 300 ml of water and 1 tsp salt. Bring to the boil. Cover, turn heat to low and simmer for half an hour. Take off the cover. Add the garam masala and cream. Mix gently. Turn up the heat, and reduce the sauce for 10 minutes or so.

Serves 4.

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