Sunday, November 18, 2012

Chicken in a Coriander Sauce

What is more comforting when the wind turns cold than a curry? The term curry was given by the Brits to describe any Indian stew-type dish and there is a reason they loved them so. There are about as many kinds of curry as people, and they are infinitely adaptable. This one has a lovely bite of mustard in it and the tang of fresh yogurt. I love mustard and yogurt so much that I put in extra, you can season to your own tastes as well. A few julienned carrots makes for a colourful garnish to this comforting dish.

I love that curry has become so ubiquitous in the west. We have a large South Asian population in the Greater Toronto Area and it makes getting traditional ingredients a dream. You can even get curry in Vegas. No longer is Las Vegas the city of steak and all-you-can-eat-buffets (although they still have them too). Every top chef has some sort of presence there, and I have heard the Home Style Chicken Curry Scented at Origin India is divine. Apparently eating is only one of the things to do in Vegas, but I'm guessing it's one of the best things!
 
Let's eat some curry, shall we?

Chicken in a Coriander Sauce
Madhur Jaffrey, online recipe source - uktv

Ingredients

    4 tbsp vegetable oil
    3 bay leaves
    6 cardamom pods
    5 cm/2 inch cinnamon sticks
    5 cloves
    2 dried red chillies
    1 kg chicken, skinned, cut into chunks
    4 tbsp sultanas
    90 ml natural yogurt
    1 tsp salt
    1/8 - 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, to taste
    5 cm / 2 inch peice fresh root ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
    3 tbsp water
    1-2 green chilli, sliced into coarse rings (do not remove the seeds)
    285 g packet frozen chopped spinach, blanched, drained
    1 large handful fresh coriander
    3 tbsp Pommery grain mustard
    cooked basmati rice, to serve

Method
1. Put the oil in a large, wide, non-stick pan and set over medium heat. When hot, add the bay leaves, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, cloves and dried red chillies. Stir for a few seconds, or until the bay leaves begin to turn brown. Add the chicken and fry on all sides for 2-3 minutes, or until golden-brown all over.

2. Add the sultanas and fry for a few seconds. Add the yoghurt and season with the salt, freshly ground black pepper and the cayenne pepper. Cover the pan with a lid, turn the heat to low and gently cook for 15 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, place the ginger into a food processor along with the water and blend until you have a smooth paste. Add the green chillies and coriander and continue to blend, scraping down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula if necessary.

4. Add the lightly drained spinach and blend very briefly. The spinach should have a coarse texture and should not be a fine puree. Empty the mixture into a bowl and mix in the mustard and a pinch of salt.

5. Add the sauce to the chicken and stir to mix. Bring to a simmer, cover again with telid and cook for ten more minutes, or until the chicken is tender. Turn the chicken pieces a few times during this period.

6. To serve, remove the bay leaves, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, whole cloves, and dried chillies from the chicken before serving with basmati rice.

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